The community of Tulameen is located on Otter Lake in the Tulameen Valley, northeast of Vancouver. The historic gold, platinum, and coal mining town has long been one of British Columbia’s popular recreational areas, offering hiking, fishing, canoeing, tubing, swimming, water-skiing, cross-country skiing, gold panning, and many other activities.
The community of Tulameen and the Tulameen River derive their name from a Thompson Indian word meaning red earth. A steep bank of the Tulameen River four miles north of Princeton was the source of the much-prized red ochre for which the Indians travelled from afar. The settlement of Tulameen was earlier known as Campement des Femmes, or Otter Flat.
Location: Tulameen is located off Highway 5A, 30 miles (47 km) northwest of Princeton, and 3 ½ hours Northeast of Vancouver. From Princeton drive to Coalmont and Tulameen on Coalmont Road, then to Otter Lake, which is well marked with signs. Tulameen can also be accessed from Highway 97C, Coquihalla Connector Highway. Turn at Aspen Grove which is Highway 5A and follow signs. All roads are paved.
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Historical sites in the area include Granite Creek, founded by Johnny Chance when he stopped here for a drink of water and discovered gold nuggets lying at the bottom of the creek, Blakeburn, the home of an underground coal mine in the early 1900s, Coalmont, named after the coal deposits mined after the gold at Granite Creek ran out, and Hedley, site of famous Nickel Plate Mountain. You can also meander along the Historic Walk around downtown Princeton, a centre for mining in the old days, and discover a bit about the town’s history and heritage, with a short story about each site.
The Coalmont Hotel is a heritage Hotel with furnishings from its era. The hotel is open to the public and serves drinks.
Gold Panning: Keep the gold you find on three proven Placer claims on great Gold Panning Tours out of Princeton.
Otter Lake Provincial Park is surrounded by the Cascade Mountain Range, which includes awesome canyons, beautiful rugged terrain, and clear flowing streams. Pristine Otter Lake is approximately 4-1/2 km long and fed by fresh mountain runoff and natural spring water. Large numbers of otter, beaver and red squirrel inhabit the area, as well as, mountain goats, cougars and grizzly bears. The park is a local favourite for picnics, fishing, swimming, boating, and water skiing, and fisherman will be rewarded, with large lake trout being the catch of the day.
Trans Canada Trail: Tulameen is located on the developing Trans Canada Trail, which will wind its way through every province and territory in Canada and will be the longest trail in the world (16,000 kms). The walking, cycling and horseback riding trail will pass through some of BC’s most stunning landscapes. The Kettle Valley Trans Canada Trail provides cycling opportunities for the whole family.
Fishing: Bring your rod to Tulameen, as there are more than forty good trout fishing lakes in the area, as well as the Similkameen and Tulameen rivers.
Rated beginner to expert, the Tulameen and Similkameen Rivers offer more than 75 km of excellent canoeing and kayaking on 2 to 6 hour runs. Or try tubing the rivers on a hot summer day, there’s nothing like it!
Winter Activities: Cross-country skiers of all levels should head for China Ridge Trails, covering open forests and fields, broad ridges and logging roads on maintained and marked trails. The Princeton area also offers lots of rolling hills for tobogganing fun. Dogsledding and Skijoring are great activities for winter enthusiasts and dog lovers.
Golf: Golfers must return to Princeton, and the Princeton Golf Club, a gorgeous 18-hole, par 72, public golf course located about three minutes east of Princeton. The course presents a challenge for almost every level of player, with intimidating Ponderosa Pines lining the long, rolling fairways. The beautiful scenery that surrounds the course only adds to the truly unique experience of playing the Princeton Golf Course. Facilities include a driving range, putting and chipping green, and RV hook-up service outside the club house for travelling guests. Golf Vacations in British Columbia.
East of Tulameen is the town of Princeton, beautifully situated in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, where the Tulameen and Similkameen rivers meet, serving as the southern gateway to the British Columbia Interior. The mountains and valleys make it a natural setting for fabulous, year-round outdoor activities.
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.