Wildlife & Wilderness

This is ‘the Canada you Imagined’. Over one million acres of wilderness in Canada’s waterfall park act as a playground for humans and animals alike. Clearwater & Wells Gray are a land of ancient forests, pristine glacial lakes, epic whitewater rafting, and more than 42 named waterfalls (including Canada’s fourth-highest). Some call this the land of fire and ice. Long ago, volcanoes erupted beneath the glaciers, leaving the breathtaking landscapes you see today. Bears, wolves, moose, deer, beaver and over 250 bird species call this land home. B.C.’s fifth largest Provincial Park, Wells Gray, lies in the heart of the world’s only inland temperate rainforest. Once you’ve had your fill of adventure, support local and fulfill your cravings at Clearwater’s numerous original cafes & restaurants. Clearwater & Wells Gray are the perfect midway stop between Vancouver and the Canadian Rockies. Giving yourself additional days and time to explore the area is a must if your soul is craving connection with awe inspiring nature.

Endless Awe

In the Spring, bears come out of hibernation, giving great opportunities for bear viewing. The rivers reach their crescendo with spring run-off and slow in early summer for excellent whitewater kayaking and rafting on the legendary Clearwater River. This is the best time to view the awe inspiring Helmcken Falls and the other 41 named waterfalls at their full and breathtaking force. Three waterfalls are equipped with the best accessibility for mobility - limited visitors include Dawson, Spahats, and Helmcken, with shorter, paved paths and viewing decks. Check out Moul, Silvertip, or Triple Decker Falls to start if you’re up for more steps and varied terrain.

Spring, summer and fall are optimal to explore the 250 kms (155 mi) of hiking trails. The geology is incredible here - you’ll walk along 200,000-year- old lava beds past ancient volcanoes with sounds of the river below or at your side. Try hut-to-hut hiking in Canada’s largest alpine flower meadow on Trophy Mountain for a real adventure. Paddle the pristine glacial waters of Clearwater/Azure Lakes dotted with beaches and campgrounds.

In the late summer, watch the salmon return to our great rivers at the accessible Raft River viewing platform off Hwy 5 or at Bailey’s Chute on the Clearwater River in Wells Gray Provincial Park.

Explore on
Horseback or Bike

Horseback riding and mountain biking are always exciting ways to explore, and they offer a perfect view of the stunning autumn colours in our endless forests. Choose from a short ride to multi-day and fully outfitted horseback riding excursions. Pack your bike to explore the whole network of mountain bike trails in town, starting with Candle Creek Trails, equipped with over 30km of groomed tracks for all levels of riding experience. You can also experience Clearwater from the air on a tandem paragliding experience to see the valleys as the birds do.

Take in the
Spectacular Views

Autumn colours give way to breathtaking winter scenes in Clearwater & Wells Gray. Many of the rushing waterfalls freeze into picturesque ice sculptures the likes of which you’ve never seen.

For postcard-worthy photos, visit Helmcken Falls, Canada’s fourth-tallest waterfall, where Old Man Winter creates a majestic ice cone beneath the rushing water. Roads and viewing platforms are maintained in the winter for your viewing pleasure.

Cariboo Mountain Powder

The mountains and meadows of Trophy, Battle and Fight Mountains offer a wide variety of spectacular terrain for hut-to-hut skiing and snowshoeing. This area is covered in the most reliable powder snow in the province – Cariboo Mountain Powder! One of the most affordable backcountry ski experiences, you can choose access by Snowcat or helicopter. In the winter, it’s the only way to experience Clearwater Lake, where you can snowshoe through ancient cedar forests, winter canoe and enjoy the coziness of a warm cabin and campfires under the stars.

Let your cross-country skis glide over the 28 kms of groomed ski trails at the Candle Creek Ski Trails. Or join us in February for the Birchleg—a Viking-themed Nordic fun cross-country ski race. There may be fewer people here in the winter, but moose, pine martens, foxes and deer are abundant.

Rest & Rejuvenate

After a full day in the great outdoors, rest your head at one of our friendly accommodations. B&Bs, hotels, resorts, cabins, and ranches all have places for you to relax and rejuvenate. With over 700 RV and campsites in the area, pick your favourite and spend the night. In addition, there are several local and provincial campgrounds, including several in Wells Gray Provincial Park and at North Thompson Provincial Park, at the confluence of the North Thompson and Clearwater Rivers.

Top Ways to Experience Clearwater & Wells Gray

‘Canada’s Waterfall Park’ is home to 42 spectacular waterfalls, including Helmcken Falls, Canada’s fourth-highest waterfall (141m high).

Float or paddle over pristine waters on Clearwater and Azure Lakes, surrounded by nature. These lakes have plenty of backcountry camping opportunities.

Let your feet carry you along over 250km of trail that go through volcanic fields, rainforest, wildflower meadows and up epic summits.

Experienced guides will help you find adventure on the legendary Clearwater River with the biggest rapids in B.C..

Hit the Candle Creek Trail System, with bike trails and terrain to keep novice & expert riders exhilarated.

Find out more about Clearwater Wells Gray: https://wellsgray.ca/

This website is the official travel website for the North Thompson Valley, British Columbia, Canada and is sponsored by the North Thompson Valley Marketing Committee; a partnership of Tourism Wells Gray, Thompson-Nicola Regional District and Tourism Valemount.