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6-PBC-Smithers-Hockey-Winter
Pond hockey in winter
(Picture BC photo)

Smithers

Geography

Smithers is a small and rural, but warm and welcoming, mountain community set along Highway 16 in Northern BC.

It sits between the towering backdrop of Hudson Bay Mountain to the southwest and Babine Mountains Provincial Park, full of hiking trails, to the northeast.

Smithers is surrounded by massive mountains as well as forests and farmland. Depending on the season, the variety of the land makes for striking views and photographs.

Bulkley River and Hudson Bay Mountain

The Bulkley River winds its way past and through Smithers, which is also surrounded by dozens of small and medium-sized lakes. Some rivers and lakes are popular fishing grounds while others are good for swimming and other water sports. Farmland and houses dot the surrounding countryside. Train tracks also run between the town and Hudson Bay Mountain. 

The town is 370km/230mi north of its closest big city, Prince George, and 351km/218mi from BC's port town of Prince Rupert on the Pacific Ocean. Drive less than five minutes out of town and be surrounded by endless scenic nature.

The approximately two-hour drive west from Smithers to Terrace follows the Bulkley River and white peaks of the Skeena mountains all the way to the Coast.

Climate and Weather

All four of Smithers seasons are distinct: summers are warm, winters are snowy, springs are rainy and falls are cool. Temperatures hover around 20°C/68°F during the summer, though it can be much hotter or cooler. Temperatures in winter usually range between -4°C/25°F and -12°C/10°F, and snow usually covers the ground. The town averages 204cm/80in of snow a year. Visitors should bring winter boots, hats, gloves and a big warm jacket. Winter tires are also necessary on vehicles.

The town's average annual rainfall is 354mm/14in, which makes for rainy springs. Fall is beautiful with the surrounding forests' leaves changing colours dramatically from red to orange and yellow to finally brown. Temperatures average about 3°C/37°F in spring and fall.