In a picturesque setting on the banks of the Peace River in the Rocky Mountain foothills, is the beautiful little community of Hudson’s Hope. Situated midway between Chetwynd and Fort St. John, this route is the most scenic in the area, as the highway follows the Peace River.
Hudson’s Hope is the third oldest community in British Columbia, and is steeped in fur-trading history dating back to the late 1700s, and the days of the Alexander Mackenzie Northwest Company.
The Hudson’s Bay Company established a trading post here in 1805, but it closed for 57 years, to punish the First Nations people for resising the white man’s invasion.
The area is one of the richest sites of fossils and dinosaur footprints in the world. Is it any wonder that the town mascot is a friendly little fellow by the name of Dudley Dinosaur?
Hudson’s Hope extends a warm welcome to visitor and entrepeneur alike, to share their unique northern bounty and hospitality.
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The fossil display in the Hudson’s Hope Museum is the finest collection of fossils in the Peace River area, which is to be expected from one of the world’s richest sites of fossils and dinosaur footprints. On display is a 11,600 year old Mammoth tusk. The history of the area is represented by pioneer and Native displays, and artifacts from the early trapping and coal mining industries.
Visit Gething Creek for a unique prehistoric experience to view actual dinosaur footprints! This site is located in a somewhat remote area approximately 40 km from the townsite. Additional information and directions are available at the Hudson’s Hope Visitor Centre.
Stroll through Alwin Holland Park, beside the Peace River.
Jamieson Woods Nature Preserve is home to ancient sand dunes, mature mixed pine/aspen forest, abundant variety of flowers and shrubs including calypso orchids and intricate mushrooms. This tranquil woodland setting is home to many types of birds, including, seven species of woodpeckers. There are great trails for mountain bikes in the summer and cross country skiing in the winter. The trail layout provides designated areas for ATV’s and snowmobiles.
The W.A.C. Bennett Dam is celebrating 40 years! Join them for an exciting underground bus tour of one of the world’s largest earth-filled structures. They will drive right through the canyon wall that will take you to the powerhouse – 500 feet underground! Have fun with hands-on science exhibits and learn how electricity is made. Tours of the underground powerhouse are available (first tour leaves at 10:30am and the last at 4:30pm). Free admission. Fee applies for underground bus tours. Hours: 10am to 6pm daily from May 17 to September 1. Located on Canyon Drive, 21 km west of Hudsons Hope.
Behind the W.A.C. Bennett Dam is Williston Lake, the largest man-made lake in North America, offering excellent fishing and fossil hunting in the surrounding area.
The Peace Canyon Dam site tells the story of the Peace Canyon dating back to the time of the dinosaur. Two life-sized models of the Hadrosaur Dinosaur, fossils, and photos tell this story in the visitor centre. At the time that the Peace Canyon Dam was built their units were the largest in the world! Free Admission. Seasonal Hours: 8am to 4pm daily from May 17 to September 1 – guided tours available. Off-Season Hours: 8am to 4pm weekdays only – self-guided tours only.
Moberly Lake Provincial Park is a popular swimming spot, and home to the mythical monster, Moberly Dick. Located south of Hudson’s Hope on the south shore of Moberly Lake, the park boasts campsites for overnighting, as well as the usual variety of water-related activities. Moberly is a popular getaway for residents and visitors alike, but there are usually a few camping spaces open for latecomers on all but the busiest weekends. A lakeside cairn to fur trader Henry John Moberly records his discovery of the lake in 1865.
Camping: Overnight camping is provided at Gethin Park, Dinosaur Lake, Cameron Lake and Alwin Holland Campgrounds, the latter situated in a rustic setting beside the Peace River. All parks are maintained by the District of Hudson’s Hope, and include water, wood, and outdoor washrooms, and some have playground equipment.
Fishing: Angling in the Fishing Capital of the Peace is excellent, with lakes and rivers full of rainbow trout, arctic grayling, dolly varden, and northern pike.
Bird Migration: The Peace River Valley is a well-travelled migration route for bald eagles, tundra and trumpeter swans, and five types of gulls. Boaters and paddlers are likely to see moose, elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer and coyotes. Also along the river bank are unusual microclimates where cacti and roses grow wild.
Circle Tours: See the best of Northern BC on one of the Circle Tours that capture the wonders of the north. The Circle Tour of Northern British Columbia incorporates the Alaska Highway through the Rocky Mountain foothills to Watson Lake in the Yukon, linking with the Stewart/Cassiar Highway and Yellowhead Highway 16 in the south. The Inside Passage Circle Tour and the Native Heritage Circle Tour follow the same route, from Port Hardy on Vancouver Island north by ferry to Prince Rupert. Catch another ferry to the Queen Charlotte Islands, or venture east on the Yellowhead Highway to Prince George, and south through the peaceful Cariboo to Vancouver along the historic Cariboo Wagon Road.
Circle Tours in British Columbia.