June 09, 2007 | Tips from Us >
Hudson's Hope, Attractions
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On May 27, 2007 I took a day trip down to Hudson’s Hope from Dawson Creek to take a tour of the Bennett Dam. When I left Dawson Creek I had exactly 2 hours to make it to the last tour of the day. To Hudson’s Hope it is 162km and then an extra 25km to the Dam. Well I assumed that I was going to be late so being the little speed devil that my car is, I ended up driving 120-130km/hour and made it there with 20 minutes to spare. The drive there was so beautiful. I have lived in Dawson Creek for 22 years and have maybe been to Chetwynd a handful of times and to Hudson’s Hope once. 15 minutes out of Dawson Creek I had to slow down due to a yearling moose grazing on the side of the highway, from there I saw 5 deer watching the traffic from a farmer’s field. After that the only wildlife that I saw on the drive was 2 dead squirrels and a bird that I ended up running over. As I was driving I remembered how beautiful this country really is. Even though I was traveling fast I still got to take in quite a bit of scenery and thoroughly enjoyed it. After Chetwynd the drive to Hudson Hope was amazing. Moberly Lake is immaculate and you can see it for most of the half hour drive. The lake looked just amazing, all I wanted to do was pull over and go for a swim...but I was on a mission.
When I got to Hudson Hope the signage quickly showed me where to go to get to the Dam and before I knew it I was there. I met up with Nicole and her and I went through the building to get ready for the tour. They had many different kinds of activities that you could do to see how electricity works which was fun and informational. When the tour started we were taken into a theatre type room and watched a quick 10 minute film on how the Bennett Dam was built. From there we were taken on a tour bus and went on a 5 minute bus ride down into the dam where we were showed how electricity is produced and what the dam actually does for our surrounding area. The guided tours were so informational and the lady was so nice and answered any questions we had about the dam...especially about the sinkholes that happened in 1996 and nearly flooded all of Hudson's Hope. The W.A.C. Bennett Dam at the head of the Peace River Canyon is key to the multiple uses of Peace River water for power generation. Completed in 1967, it is one of the world's largest earth fill structures, stretching 2 km across the head of the canyon and measuring 600 feet in height and is named after the B.C. premier at the time. Behind the dam is British Columbia's largest reservoir, Williston Lake, which covers an area of 410,000 acres. Driving back on the bus we spotted 4 bald eagles which are usually located there watching for dizzy fish that come out of the turbines so they can munch on them. After the hour long tour Nicole and I left the main building and drove around on top of the dam where we could see the top view of all the surrounding area. We were also fortunate to stop in at an artifact gallery with Dinosaur prints as well as old goal mining carts and stamp machines. On our way home we also stopped at a little abandoned cabin which is really just a short long house and toured the area a little more before heading back home to Dawson Creek. The way home we took the end of the circle route which took us from Hudson Hope to Fort St. John and then to Dawson Creek. The drive once again was very beautiful and scenic but it was so windy that I need to go much slower especially around those corne