It's hard to believe that up until 50 years ago, this small community could only be reached on foot or via the occasional train.
And even though a highway now connects Pemberton to Whistler and Lillooet, Pemberton has never lost its sense of self-sufficiency and connection with the land.
First Nations Heritage
The Valley was first settled by the Lil'wat Nation, a branch of the Interior Salish. They were also called "Onion People," named for the region's abundance of wild onions and evidence of their existence here dates back more than 2,000 years in the form of pictographs (rock paintings), a Lil'wat tradition that still influences much of their art today.
Pathways to Gold
The gold rush of the 1860s was the first to reshape Pemberton Valley. In their quest to reach the gold fields of the Fraser River, 500 miners volunteered to build a trail – now the Pemberton Portage Road, to connect Anderson and Lillooet lakes on which Port Pemberton was established.