The community of Heffley Creek on the Yellowhead Highway north of Kamloops is situated on the North Thompson River and bordered by the Sun Peaks Ski Resort to the east.
Located inside the boundary of the City of Kamloops, Heffley was founded as a farming community in the 1860s. Prior to that, the east side of the North Thompson River was one of the routes of the fur brigades on their way to the North.
Heffley Creek is named after Adam P. Heffley, an American pioneer rancher who arrived with the gold rush of 1858. In 1862, Heffley brought in some twenty camels from California and attempted to use them to pack supplies to the Cariboo goldfields. The project’s lack of success was due in part to the camels frightening the horses. He settled at Bourdignon Creek in 1865, raising horses on his ranch and working as a packer, and died of a heart attack in 1871.
Services at Heffley Creek include a general store, community hall and elementary school.
Sun Peaks Resort is an international four-season resort located east of Heffley Creek. Known for its sunny climate, Sun Peaks Resort receives more than 2,000 hours of sunshine per year, and more than five metres of snow. There are over one hundred runs to choose from, spread over the second largest skiable terrain in BC.
Fishing: Paul Lake is stocked with two species of rainbow trout and is easily accessed with a car-top boat. Heffley Lake is a great location for rainbow trout, and ice fishing is also at Heffley Lake in winter. The Barriere Lakes also provide some of the best trout fishing in the region. The nearly 200 lakes in the Kamloops area make it one of the best freshwater fishing destinations in North America, whether it’s spring, summer, fall or winter. Steelhead, eastern brook and rainbow trout can be found in most lakes. Once the cold weather sets in and the ice thickens up, determined ice fishermen can be found on a number of the lakes in the region. Some may choose to visit a secluded lake or visit one of the many fishing lodges open year-round. Consult the BC Freshwater Fishing Synopsis to determine which lakes are open for ice fishing.
Golf: Thin air and summer temperatures that rise above 90 deg F mean that the ball really flies at the eleven golf courses in the Kamloops area; The Dunes Golf Course, Eaglepoint Golf & Country Club, Kamloops Golf & Country Club, Rivershore Golf Club, Sun Rivers Golf Resort, Aberdeen Hills Golf Course, McArthur Island Golf Club, Mount Paul Golf Club, Pineridge Golf Course and Tobiano Golf Course (just east of Savona). Golf Vacations in British Columbia.
Lac du Bois Grasslands Provincial Park south of Heffley Creek is one of the largest publicly owned grasslands in British Columbia, encompassing 15,000 hectares of protected wilderness. Cool dry forests, hidden ponds, several small lakes and two Ecological Reserves are found within the boundaries of the park. The spectacular cliffs of Tranquille Canyon separate the rolling hills in the east from the Tranquille River valley in the west.
North Thompson Oxbows Jensen Island Park near Heffley Creek protects an oxbow, a U-shaped bend in the North Thompson River. The park contains rich marsh and wetland habitat that is important for a variety of waterfowl species, as well as otters and beavers. It is a migration stop for white pelicans, tundra and trumpeter swans, passerines and other waterfowl. There are no facilities at the park, which is covered by water for approximately four months of the year and can only be accessed via private land.
Paul Lake Provincial Park is known for its beautiful scenery and wide variety of recreational activities. The park features a large lakeshore campground, extensive picnic grounds, and a hiking trail to Gibraltar Rock that leads to a great view of Paul Lake and nearby Harper Mountain.
South of Heffley Creek is the neighbourhood of Rayleigh and the city of Kamloops, situated at the confluence of the North and South Thompson Rivers. Water isn’t the only thing that meets in Kamloops; the Trans-Canada, the Yellowhead Highway and Highway 97 all meet in Kamloops, as do the two national rail lines, CP and CN.
North of Heffley Creek is the small community of Vinsulla and the town of Barriere, nestled in the North Thompson Valley and reminiscent of Swiss alpine scenery. The history of Barriere dates back to the days of fur trading, but farming and forestry are now the main contributors to the economy of Barriere.
Circle Tours: See the best of the area on Okanagan and Kootenay Rockies 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 the Southern Okanagan, starting and ending your sun-drenched voyage in Osoyoos, the place where two lakes come together. Circle Tours in British Columbia.