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6-PBC-Chetwynd-Aboriginal-Dancers
Dancers performing at Aboriginal Activity Day
(Picture BC photo)

Chetwynd

Geography

Chetwynd lies within the Peace River Country against the eastern foothills of the northern Rocky Mountains.

Situated as a northern gateway into the Pine Pass, the town's setting among rolling hills makes it the perfect place for a variety of outdoor activities.

Location & Area

Mountain erosion processes that created the jagged Rocky Mountains influenced the gently shaped foothills around Chetwynd. Three main rivers also helped to sculpt the landscape of the surrounding area. The Sukunka River flows into the Pine River a short distance from town, and the Moberly River flows in and out of Moberly Lake, within 20-minute drive of town. Take advantage of the area's two golf courses, which have made the most of the scenic beauty of the Sukunka River and Moberly Lake's rolling banks.

Natural Resources

The geology of the area includes coal seams, which are currently being explored. The terrain offers a variety of other resources resulting in a diverse local economy that is fairly resilient to changes in the Canadian and global economies. Today, Chetwynd has weathered mill closures with the downturn in the forest industry in BC, and is moving steadily forward with its oil and gas, ranching, and mineral exploration industries.

Climate and Weather

Overall, Chetwynd's climate is milder than other communities in the Peace River Country, with winter temperatures often several degrees warmer. The hills have characteristically bare south facing banks with grassland type ecosystems, while the north facing banks are frequently treed with mixed deciduous and coniferous stands of aspen, spruce, and pine. Valley bottoms support stands of great balsam poplar trees, similar to the cottonwoods found in southern BC.

July temperatures average 16.3°C/61.3°F, reaching highs of 32.7°C/90.86°F, while January temperatures average -10.7°C/12.7°F, dipping down as low as -52°C/-61.6°F. Be prepared for mountain weather such as thunderstorms and squalls (short rain or snow storms). When heading into the mountains it is a good idea to bring layers, as temperatures do decrease as elevation increases. Interestingly, winter temperature inversions can create warmer air at higher elevations.