The Chilcotin offers excellent horseback riding country, as many parks in the region are only accessible by hiking, horseback or floatplane. Come and experience the excitement of a horseback adventure dating back to the good old days, when horses brought the fur traders, prospectors and settlers into the BC interior.
Challenge the trails on multi-day trail rides, the traditional way of exploring the Chilcotin. Combine horseback riding with rounding up cattle at a working cattle ranch, or fishing remote lakes and streams that can only be reached on horseback.
Guided-outfitters offer trip packages that provide the ultimate outdoor experience – a safe, professionally guided and outfitted adventure horseback packtrip. The Rainbow Mountains, Southern Chilcotin Mountains, Marble Range, Itcha and Ilgachuz Mountains, Cariboo Mountains, Fraser Canyon and Chilcotin grasslands are all destinations for unforgettable trips.
Lodges in Ts’yl-os Provincial Park and at Chilko Lake offer excellent horseback riding packages to be enjoyed from the comfort of well appointed lodges. Explore the open grasslands, rolling hills, forests, river ridges and numerous small lakes of the Chilcotin Plateau.
You’ll also find good riding on the Puntzi Lake Trails, 4.3 miles (7 km) north of Hwy 20, about 35 miles (60 km) west of Alexis Creek. The central location of beautiful Puntzi Lake in the Chilcotin makes it an ideal spot for a base camp when exploring the region.
Horses are permitted on many of the trails leading from the colourful Rainbow Range trailhead in Tweedsmuir Provincial Park, 18.6 miles (30 km) west of Anahim Lake. Guiding services located in Anahim Lake lead guided horseback trips into both Ts’yl-os and Tweedsmuir parks, combining memorable alpine sightseeing, wildlife viewing and eco adventure with learning about botany, geology, First Nations’ culture and local Chilcotin history.
The wilderness Tweedsmuir South Provincial Park is located on the western limit of the Cariboo-Chilcotin cattle country, and offers great horseback riding on wilderness trails. A large portion of the Alexander MacKenzie Heritage Trail is located in the park, and wildlife is everywhere; caribou, moose, deer, mountain goats, black bears, grizzly bears, marmots, wolves, wolverines, and many species of birds, including ptarmigan, hawks and eagles.
The Alexander Mackenzie Heritage Trail also can be travelled on horseback. The trail follows the route of Alexander Mackenzie, who trekked overland and by canoe from Lake Athabaska in 1793 on behalf of the North West Company in search of a trade route to the Pacific. His journey took him 72 days and covered over 1,240 miles (2,000 km) of unmapped terrain. See Sir Alexander Mackenzie Provincial Park.
The historical trail stretches a full 260 miles (420 km) from the mouth of the West Road (Blackwater) River between Prince George and Quesnel to the Sir Alexander Mackenzie Provincial Park in Dean Channel west of Bella Coola. Designated as the first heritage trail in British Columbia in 1985, the trail’s hiking terminus is at Burnt Bridge Creek, adjacent to the western boundary of Tweedsmuir Provincial Park, where it is intersected by Hwy 20.
The trail includes local wagon roads, provincial highways, forest access roads, rivers, and coastal waterways. Approximately 186 miles (300 km) of this corridor is recreational trail, and about 62 miles (100 km) is well-preserved aboriginal footpath. The 50-mile (80-km) stretch of the trail in Tweedsmuir Provincial Park is perhaps the most scenic of the entire route. A short section of the trail that offers views of the Bella Coola Valley and south to Stupendous Mountain can be reached in a one- to two-hour loop from Burnt Bridge Creek.