August 12, 2012 | Tips from Travellers >
Dawson Creek, Attractions
One of the most frequently asked questions I encounter as a Tourism/Visitor Information Councilor in Dawson Creek is: “what can I do in this part of the country?!” My answer to this is usually “what can’t you do in this part of the country!” The Peace Region is filled with natural beauty, historical interests and adventure packed outdoor recreation for all you adrenaline seekers! So, to make things a little simpler for your Peace Region trip planning needs here are the top ten things to see and do around the Peace!
1. Learn about the rich histories that this region has to offer! Dawson Creek has some of the best museums and historic walks you can find! Stop by the Northern Alberta Railway museum located in the Visitor’s Centre, which is the original building that once housed the railway station from 1931; the same station that brought American Soldiers to build the Alaskan Highway! After you are done make sure to check out the other side of the museum which houses natural history of the region as well as history on Dawson Creek! For more historic tales about Dawson Creek, ask one of the T/VIC councilors about the Dawson Creek Downtown Historical Self-Guided Walking Tour and they would be happy to show you on your way for a fantastic tour of all the historic monuments and murals of the Mile “0” city. After you have finished at the NAR Park be sure to head down to the Walter Wright Pioneer Village. This heritage museum is a recreation of Dawson Creek pre-Alaska Highway. Walk along the boardwalk and check out historic houses, schools, churches and shops. Once you are done reliving the 1920s, head to the Village of Pouce Coupe and stop in at the Pouce Coupe museum. Though small in size, this museum is a treasure trove of different information on the region as well as the Village its self! For a little bit of a different history, be sure to take a trip down to the Tumbler Ridge Dinosaur Museum to learn about the Peace Region’s prehistoric inhabitants! Be sure to investigate the museums in Fort St. John, Chetwynd and Hudson’s Hope for even more of historical journeys through time.
2. Fulfill all your hiking needs on one of the many beautiful hiking trails in the region! Enjoy a leisurely hike with gorgeous views of the valley along the rim rock trails located at the Bear Mountain Wind Park. If you’re looking for a bit of variety, be sure to stop in at the Dawson Creek or Tumbler Ridge visitor centers to pick of a map of all the hiking trail heads in and around Tumbler Ridge. These trails come in a range of difficulties and lengths; there is sure to be a trail that will fit everyone’s needs and wants!
3. From August to May be sure to catch magnificent displays of northern lights in the night sky. This ten month span is the best to catch some of the most breath taking lightshows! So once the sun sets, be sure to turn your head towards the skies for a chance to catch one of the world’s most brilliant natural performances.
4. Get an insider’s peak at life in natural wetlands at McQueen’s Slough. Located about fifteen minutes outside of Dawson Creek, this boardwalk through a nature preserve is sure to excite birders and wildlife enthusiasts a like!
5. In early August, come down to Dawson Creek to check out the Annual Fall Fair and Rodeo. This event has been dubbed “The Biggest Event in the Peace” and is sure to please everyone in the family! There is a full sized midway, with rides for little ones and adrenaline seekers alike. The rodeo portion holds all sorts of events from bull riding to barrel racing. If you stick around long enough, you can catch the Pro Chuckwagon races, which draw in crowds from all over the USA and Canada.
6. Drive a portion of the old Alaska Highway and experience history and an engineering marvel as you cross the world famous Kiskatinaw curved wooden bridge. Located at Mile 21 of the Alaska Highway, this is a must see if you’re going North or if you’re just in the region.
7. The views off the bridge are spectacular but the swimming under the bridge is even better! So pack a lunch, bring your camera and a swimsuit because you’ll be sure to spend the afternoon enjoying all the Kiskatinaw River has to offer.
8. Go to the Rolla Pub, located fifteen minutes outside of Dawson Creek. This little pub out in the country is jammed packed with local history, endearing locals and friendly staff.
9. Dip your feet in the mighty Peace River! Drive ten minutes on highway 2 outside of Dawson Creek to Pouce Coupe and head down to the Pouce Coupe Park. The river is a five minute walk away.
10. Lastly, partake in one of the amazing day trips around the BC Peace. Leave from Dawson Creek, goto Fort St. John, Hudson’s Hope, Chetwynd and loop back to Dawson, or go from Dawson Creek to Chetwynd down to Tumbler Ridge... really which ever route you want to take is sure to be alight with majestic wildlife, quaint towns, and gorgeous natural scenery.
There are so many things to do in the Peace that it’s hard to fit them all onto one list. Be sure to stop in at a Visitor Centre or ask a local and you’ll embark on an experience of a lifetime!