Thompson River - Kumsheen Rafting Resort, Lytton, BC.
August 2021 – Sadly Lytton was destroyed by wildfire in the summer of 2021. The community will be rebuilt as soon as possible. Our thoughts are with the residents and businesses during these difficult times.
Situated in Thompson Okanagan‘s Gold Country at the confluence of the Thompson River and the Fraser River, Lytton is one of the oldest continuously settled communities in all of North America. Its history is reflected in the local museum with an excellent collection of artifacts. View the Jelly Roll, a rare natural geological formation comprised of sand and silt that dates back to the Ice Age. It was discovered in a nearby gravel pit and is considered rare as it is one of the largest in the world, if not the largest. Visit Caboose Park which showcases the railway history in these parts with a model railway replicating the rail lines and crossings in the area. Check out the steel sculptures, do some gold panning and try geocaching – fun for the whole family.
Stop in at Skihist Provincial Park. Try river rafting on the Thompson River. Do a little fishing and exploring. Awe-inspiring views of the Thompson Canyon and quiet strolls on the old Cariboo Waggon Road bring to mind the difficulties encountered by early travellers traversing the western mountain ranges. Goldpan Provincial Park is also close by and provides access to the Thompson River and excellent fishing, canoeing and kayaking.
Lytton is located at the junction of Highway 12 and Trans-Canada Highway 1, at the north end of the Fraser Canyon and at the confluence of the Thompson and Fraser Rivers. It is located 107 km (66 mi) north of Hope and 85 km (53 mi) south of Cache Creek.
Lytton is one of the oldest continuously settled communities in all of North America. Built on the site of a First Nations village known as Camchin (“the meeting place”), Lytton was also a stopping place along the route taken by hardy prospectors as they made their way north to the gold fields.
The explorer Simon Fraser visited this site in 1808, travelling down the great river which now bears his name, seeking a route to the Pacific. He stopped at Lytton, the point of the confluence, and named the green tributary flowing into the Fraser the Thompson River, after his friend and fellow explorer, David Thompson.
The tremendous surge inland for gold and other precious metals saw the Indian trail through the Fraser Canyon expanded to a mule trail in 1860, followed by a wagon road in 1863. By this time, the community known as The Forks had been renamed in honour of the British Colonial Secretary, Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton.
Lytton’s appreciation of its Gold Rush history, as well as its thriving First Nations culture, are all visible through the preserved buildings and archives of a bygone era.