The BC Rockies region of British Columbia is located in the southeastern corner of the province, bordering Alberta and the US state of Montana. The Rockies includes the area from Creston in the Selkirk Mountains to Cranbrook in the Purcell Mountains, the Crowsnest Pass and the British Columbia/Alberta border in the Rockies, and the Columbia River Valley from Cranbrook to Golden.
For outdoor enthusiasts, the route from Creston to Crowsnest Pass is a motherlode of serious adventure. The British Columbia/Alberta border parks – Height of the Rockies Provincial Park, Elk Lakes Provincial Park, and Akamina-Kishinena Recreation Area – present some truly extraordinary landscapes to explore.
The Rocky Mountain Trench (also known as the Columbia Valley) is surmounted by the Rocky Mountains on the east and the Bugaboos on the west. Both are impressively high and rugged ranges.
Equally impressive is the Columbia River, which rolls through the southern part of the valley. The broad waterway is an important stopover on the semiannual migration route for wildlife and a joy to travel in any season.
Highway 93/95 links Cranbrook at the south end of the Columbia River Valley with Golden, about 140 miles (230 km) north. A steady stream of travellers pass through the region, but few are fortunate enough to make a home in this blessed setting. The land will sustain agriculture only at its south end, leaving vast tracts of wilderness for the enjoyment of those who love the outdoors. For additional adventure, visitors can explore the northeast section of Highway 93, which runs from Radium Hot Springs into Kootenay National Park.
The name Kootenay, used for the southeastern portion of the province, comes from the Kootenay First Nation, a group of linguistically distinct Native people. They occupy the East Kootenays, with their territory extending into northern Washington, Idaho, and Montana. The western portion of the district was also occupied by Interior Salishan Natives, linguistically and culturally related to the coastal people, or by Thompson River-Shuswap Natives, heavily influenced by the Athapaskan culture.
The following towns are located in the BC Rockies:
Location: The BC Rockies region of British Columbia is located in the southeastern corner of the province. The Rockies can be approached from the Columbia River Valley in the north along Highway 93/95, from the east along Highway 6 in Alberta, or from the west along Crowsnest Highway 3. Highway 3 deposits travellers at its junction with Highway 93/95 in Cranbrook. The Trans-Canada Highway (Highway 1) does the same in Golden, where it meets Highway 95. Highways 93 and 95 part company in Radium Hot Springs. Highway 93 heads northeast to Alberta and meets the Trans-Canada at Banff, a distance of 65 miles (105 km), and Highway 95 heads north to Golden.
Circle Tours: See the best of the area on the Okanagan and Kootenay Rockies Circle Tour or the Kootenay Rockies Hot Springs Circle Tour. Travel the sunny interior of British Columbia, north through the Okanagan to Sicamous, following Highway 1 into the mountains of the BC Rockies. From Golden, head south through the Columbia Valley to Creston, and west through Boundary Country and the Southern Okanagan to complete the loop. Circle Tours in British Columbia.
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