Smithers Mountain Peaks Photo SimonSees.com

Travel Spotlight

Smithers

Smithers is a community with a borderline humid continental/subarctic climate in northern British Columbia. The region is known for its world class skiing and fishing, particularly for steelhead. Other available activities include soccer, volleyball, hockey, baseball, downhill mountain biking, cross-country skiing, hiking, quaddingd, and snowmobiling. The many lakes and rivers in the area 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 artefacts and documents which detail the history of the region. The Smithers Art Gallery, which opened in 1972, features exhibitions from local and regional artists. The gallery is home to many beautiful and exciting works of art, with shows booked at least 2 years in advance.

Totem Pole at the Glacier View RV Park in Smithes.

The community of 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.

Location

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. The Town’s location is positioned with excellent road, rail and air connections to the rest of the province of British Columbia.

A Step Back in Time

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.

Cabin deck at Glacier View RV Park in Smithers.

Contact Information

Tourism Smithers

Camping Lodging

The Super Camping / Select Lodging Guide

First Published in 1989