Start in the coastal city of Prince Rupert. Tour the North Pacific Cannery, a national heritage site built in 1889 in nearby Port Edward. See the cannery, general store, and net-loft. Today, it remains the oldest, most intact fish cannery on the west coast of North America.
View grizzly bears in their natural habitat on a guided tour to the Khutzeymateen, Canada’s only grizzly bear sanctuary. Stop at the historic district of Cow Bay to have lunch, then take an after-meal stroll along the waterfront. From Prince Rupert, drive east on Highway 16 to Terrace.
In Terrace, visit nearby Kitselas Canyon historic site to see totem poles, petroglyph sites (weather permitting) and hike an interpretive trail that leads to a viewpoint overlooking the Skeena River. Or take a short drive and hike to nearby Extew Falls.
Terrace’s Skeena Valley Farmers’ Market is held every Saturday during the summer months; try any number of Northern BC food favourites such as Saskatoon berry pies or buffalo jerky.
From Terrace, take Highway 113 up the Nass Valley on a self-guided auto tour of the Nisga’a Memorial Lava Bed Provincial Park to see remnants of a volcanic eruption. Visit the Nisga’a Museum, and be sure to stop at the natural hot springs for a relaxing soak in the forest.
Located at the end of the Highway 113 is Gingolx (Kincolith), the “Seafood Capital of the Nass”. Stop in at Bonnie’s for one of the freshest halibut and crab feasts in the west.
Backtrack south to Highway 16. Overnight in Terrace. Drive east to Gitwangak (Kitwanga) – the junction to the Stewart-Cassiar Highway. Gitanyow (Kitwancool) is located just past the turnoff and is home to many totem poles (some more than a century old). Nearby, relive history on an interpretive walking trail at Battle Hill National Historic Site.
Optional: For a day trip from this area, continue east on Highway 16 to the Hazeltons and visit the world-renowned ‘Ksan Historical Village. Learn about Gitxsan history and culture, see traditional totem carvers at work and stroll the shore where the Bulkley and Skeena Rivers meet.
Head toward Meziadin Junction and stop in at the Meziadin Fish Ladder to watch the local fisherman use traditional dip netting techniques to catch and smoke salmon.
Take in a picnic, swim or paddle at Meziadin Lake Provincial Park and enjoy the scenery and crystal clear water.
From Meziadin Junction, take Highway 37A west to Stewart and Hyder, Alaska. Visit the Stewart Historical Museum, which is housed in a 1910 firehall, to learn about the town’s colourful mining past. Stroll along the boardwalk for spectacular views of the Portland Canal.
Walk 3km/1.8mi across the border to Hyder, Alaska to get “Hyderized” – the world-famous Hyder tradition. Drive to the Salmon Glacier, North America’s fifth largest glacier, and the largest vehicle-accessible glacier in the world. Or watch grizzly and black bears fish for spawning salmon from the viewing platform at Fish Creek. Overnight in Stewart.
Backtrack to Meziadin Junction and follow Highway 37 north to Kinaskan Lake Provincial Park and take in sweeping views of the Todagin Mountains to the east and the Klastline Plateau to the west. A quick paddle across Natadesleen Lake brings you to the trailhead to dramatic Cascade Falls.
From Tatogga Lake, take a flight-seeing tour over the volcanic wilderness of Mount Edziza with Alpine Lakes Air, or go horseback riding in the remote Spatsizi Plateau Wilderness Provincial Park.
Head to Dease Lake. Fishing, hiking, boating and canoeing are all popular activities here. Visit in June to attend the annual Lake Trout Derby, which attracts many fishing enthusiasts. Overnight in Dease Lake or stay at the quaint and cozy Red Goat Lodge on the shore of Eddontenajon Lake.
From Dease Lake, adventurous drivers can take a side trip to Telegraph Creek. (Note: this gravel road is steep and narrow in places – not recommended for RVs or fifth-wheels.). Here you will find remarkable Tahltan hospitality at the Riversong Lodge and Cafe. Or dive into the area’s rich history at the Stikine Museum.
Witness the remarkable “Grand Canyon of the Stikine.” This is Canada’s largest canyon – an 80km/50mi stretch of impassable waters located in canyons 300m/985ft deep. Take a guided jetboat tour of the lower Grand Canyon to experience the beauty of the river.
Backtrack to Dease Lake then continue driving north to the Yukon border – the junction of Highway 37 and the Alaska Highway.
This region is known for its high concentration of jade; drive north to the Jade City to browse locally mined jade-based souvenirs. Be sure to stop at Boya Lake Provincial Park to swim in the warm, aquamarine waters.
Optional: Drive northwest on the Alaska Highway through the Yukon to Alaska.
Get additional information about travelling along the Stewart-Cassiar.