Smithers Mountain Peaks Photo SimonSees.com
Smithers is a community with a borderline humid continental/subarctic climate in the Bulkley Valley in Northern British Columbia. The region is known for its world class skiing and fishing, particularly for steelhead. Mountain biking, cross-country skiing, hiking, quadding, and snowmobiling are all popular in the area. The many lakes and rivers are excellent for kayaking and canoeing.
The Bulkley Valley offers a self-guided Culture Crawl through the history of the Bulkley Valley. The Museum features artifacts and documents which detail the history of the region. The Smithers Art Gallery, which opened in 1972, houses exhibitions from local and regional artists. The gallery is home to many beautiful and exciting works of art.
The community of Witset (Moricetown) is just 33 km (20.5 mi) north, and is well worth the trip. The current village was built during the early 1900s. Evidence of Native American inhabitants date back to around 5,500 years ago. The region is mainly a native american settlement, and their rich culture is easily observable here.
The Town of Smithers is situated in the Bulkley Valley of Northern British Columbia along Yellowhead Highway 16. It is approximately half way between the cities of Prince Rupert and Prince George and 204 km (127 mi) east of Terrace, 15 km (10 mi) west of Telkwa, 64 km (40 mi) west of Houston.
The community of Smithers was founded in 1913 as the divisional headquarters of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway. The community took its name from Sir Alfred Smithers, the chairman of the board of directors of the railway. Lake Kathlyn is one of the most familiar spots in the area. The lake is named after Sir Alfred’s daughter.
In 1921, British Columbia incorporated the village of Smithers. The town encouraged a steady growing economy through the development of local mineral and agricultural resources. In 1967 it moved from the status of village to an incorporated town.
Pioneer settlers made the region their home because of the fertile valley soil, its abundant mineral riches and imposing coniferous forests. Later, tourism played an important part of the economic foundation of the area. Following World War II, many Europeans immigrated to Smithers, notably Dutch and Swiss families.