Bordered by the Fraser River to the south, mountain ranges to the north, and the Pitt River to the west, the picturesque community of Pitt Meadows lies 40 kilometres east of the hustle and bustle of Vancouver. This rural area between Port Coquitlam and Maple Ridge comprises the communities of Hammond and Pitt Meadows, separated from Coquitlam by the Pitt River and Pitt River Bridge. Pitt Lake, Pitt River and Pitt Meadows were named after William Pitt, the British Prime Minister during the Napoleonic era.
The first inhabitants of the area were the Coast Salish Indians, who lived, gathered food, and hunted on the productive land for centuries before the first European settlers arrived in 1858. The settlers, many of whom had worked for the Hudson’s Bay Company, established residences on land across the Fraser River from the fort at Fort Langley. They settled into a hard lifestyle of clearing and working the farmland, where success was achieved by very few.
The municipality of Pitt Meadows was incorporated in the fall of 1874, with the Federal Free Homestead Act passed in the same year attracting more settlers to the area. The act provided land for $1 per acre to those enduring enough to clear the land, fence it, and establish a residence within three years.
After 1885, the arrival of the railway attracted more people to the area. The neighbourhoods of Whonnock, Ruskin, Pitt Meadows, Webster’s Comer, and Albion were established. The completion of the Lougheed Highway in 1931 renewed activity and development in Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge.
The two communities of Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge to the east are among the fastest growing in the Lower Mainland, offering a rural setting in close proximity to the main urban centres. Pitt Meadows is an agricultural area known for its specialty crops, including blueberries, cranberries, raspberries and strawberries. The Fraser River also supports a commercial fishery, and forest products are a major resource sector in the region.
The Pitt Meadows Museum and Archives is housed in the old Pitt Meadows General Store, which was built in 1886 and moved to its current location in 1908. Artifacts relating to the pioneer and agricultural history of the community are located on the first floor, with a small community archive on the upper floor. Heritage walking tours are available. Take a tour and learn the history of the city and the region. Located at 12294 Harris Road, the museum is operated by the Pitt Meadows Heritage and Museum Society. Admission by donation.
The Maple Ridge Museum is located in an historic setting overlooking the Fraser River near the original waterfront heart of Port Haney. Displays reflect the local history and geography of the region, beginning with First Nations stone tools and cedar baskets, as well as Finnish and Japanese items from the varied ethnic groups that settled in Maple Ridge. The Museum also houses the Maple Ridge Community Archives that includes several thousand photographs and primary documents relating to local people, organizations, and businesses.
The Maple Ridge Art Gallery in the heart of downtown Maple Ridge features work by artists in the Maple Ridge area.
Savour fresh Farm Produce from the markets, and tasty delicacies from the European style delis.
Nature Sanctuaries and wildlife preserves offer a wonderful retreat for nature lovers. British Columbia is one of the richest wildlife viewing areas in Canada.
Golf: The area offers a number of beautiful golf courses: Meadow Gardens Golf Course is notable for the water, sand, tree-covered rolling mounds, and the attention to the needs of nature. From the winding entry drive to spectacular views of the Golden Ears mountains, the theme of harmony and challenging golf repeats itself on every exciting hole. Golden Eagle Golf Club is situated amidst the beautiful Thompson Mountains in scenic Pitt Meadows, offering 36 fun and challenging holes divided between the North Course and South Course. Rolling fairways surrounded by plenty of water and bunkers lead you to massive bent grass greens testing all aspects of your game. Pitt Meadows Golf & Country Club, situated on the old Greybrook Farm property, offers an enjoyable course, challenging yet fair, with perfectly manicured lawns and a picturesque backdrop of the Golden Ears Mountains (18 holes, par 72, 6,549 yards). Swan-E-Set Bay Resort Club is set in an inspired setting, complete with meandering streams, crystal-clear lakes, and the breathtaking backdrop of the coastal mountains. From the tranquil Pitt River Valley, Lee Trevino sculpted two unique championship golf courses that offer both challenge and playability for all skill levels. Golf Vacations in British Columbia.
Sports facilities in Pitt Meadows include indoor skating arenas and athletic parks.
Dykes: Explore the numerous hiking trails and biking routes – the dykes along the river provide an extensive trail system for year-round enjoyment, wildlife viewing and bird watching.
Outdoor Adventure around Pitt Meadows includes boating, canoeing, fishing, swimming, horseback riding, and much more. The varied terrain of the Vancouver, Coast and Mountain region of BC accommodates every outdoor recreation known to man. Recreation in the Vancouver, Coast & Mountains region.
Pitt Lake is the only freshwater tidal lake in North America.
Golden Ears Provincial Park in the Coast Mountains is one of the largest and most popular provincial parks in British Columbia. The park is 11 kilometres north of Maple Ridge – entrance via Fern Crescent.
The UBC Research Forest – just west of Golden Ears Park, is accessed at the end of Silver Valley Road.
The tranquil Blue Mountain Forest in Maple Ridge provides a soothing setting for picnicking in Kanaka Creek Regional Park. Tables are spread about in a sunny location just above Cliff Falls. Come June, the salmonberry bushes are laden with ripe fruit, in brilliant shades of red and gold.
One of the best picnic sites in the south Fraser Valley is located at Campbell Valley Regional Park in Langley. An unspoken welcome permeates the atmosphere. Eat a little, explore a little, eat a little more – you know the routine. Take Scenic Highway 7 east to Albion and catch the ferry.
Derby Reach Regional Park sits across the Fraser River from the entrance of Kanaka Creek, near Fort Langley. The park is situated on the original townsite of Fort Langley, the oldest continuously settled European community in British Columbia. Tall black cottonwoods shelter the campsites and support the nests of a colony of blue herons. Take Scenic Highway 7 east to Albion and catch the ferry.
The Pitt Meadows Airport is the only airport in the Fraser Valley that is located on the north side of the Fraser River. The airport offers a variety of services, including daily flights to Victoria, charter flights, helicopter rides, flying and parachute lessons, and sightseeing tours. There is also a seaplane access with a floatplane dock along the Fraser River.
The Albion Ferry shuttles vehicles and foot passengers from Maple Ridge to Fort Langley across the Fraser River, providing access to the Trans-Canada Highway.
A must-see is the Fort Langley National Historic Site, a five-minute ferry trip from Maple Ridge on the south side of the Fraser River. The park was a Hudson’s Bay Company trading post that has been lovingly preserved and restored, allowing exploration of the living magic of the historical Birthplace of British Columbia.
Visitors exploring the Langley Centennial Museum in nearby Langley, one of the oldest community museums in British Columbia, will see examples of pre-contact life among the Coast Salish people, as well as early settler exhibits.
Stop by the BC Farm Machinery and Agricultural Museum in fort Langley, which features a wind-powdered water well and Tiger Moth airplane.
Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Circle Farm Tour: Join the kids for some lighthearted agri-tainment, shop for seriously nutritious food, and beautify your yard on this delightful tour. The whole family will enjoy the farmers market, corn maze activities, and the world of bees. Shop for organic berries, hormone-free beef, old-fashioned ham, bacon, and sausages, and sample fine fruit wines. Pick up bedding plants, hanging baskets, trees and water plants to take home to your garden. Check with the Visitor Centre for more details.
Neighbouring Pitt Meadows is the quiet pastoral community of Maple Ridge, nestled below the Blue Mountain on the north bank of the Fraser River. Maple Ridge proudly boasts a rich heritage of First Nations and pioneer history, much of which has been well preserved.
East of Pitt Meadows, across the Pitt River, is the town of Port Coquitlam, the geographical centre of the Lower Mainland. Port Coquitlam’s central location and unique setting produces a truly exceptional living and recreational environment.
Circle Tours: See the best of the area on a driving Circle Tour. Head north out of Vancouver for the scenic Sunshine Coast and Vancouver Island Circle Tour, or stay on the intensely scenic Sea to Sky Highway, passing through the magical winter resort town of Whistler and Coast Mountains Circle Tour. To explore the rural farmlands and forests of the fertile Fraser Valley, take the Fraser Valley Circle Tour, travelling outbound on the scenic route north of the historic Fraser River, returning westwards along the Trans Canada Highway 1 to Vancouver. Circle Tours in British Columbia.