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Find Clarity in BC’s Mountains: The British Columbia Effect

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If you’ve ever daydreamed about ditching everything to head into the mountains, you understand the positive shift that disconnection and solitude can bring. There’s something life-altering about spending uninterrupted time in the mountains.

BC is home to ten major mountain ranges and is the most mountainous region in Canada. From the glacier-worn Canadian Rockies to the highest peaks of the Coast Mountains, ranges extend from all edges of the province making it the ideal place to reset when you need it most. Discover these three ways that BC’s mountains change you for the better.

Sonora Resort | Destination Canada

 1. Disconnect to reconnect

Swapping the behind-the-screen view for something a little grander is what many of us crave. The daily demands of multitasking can lead to exhaustion and eventually adrenal fatigue if uncontrolled. Whether you’re seeking complete solace in the back country or a more leisurely respite, time in the mountains provides the opportunity to disconnect from daily life and reconnect with nature.

Mountain Trek Fitness Retreat and Health Spa

Give yourself the gift of disconnection at one of these digital detox retreats in BC’s rocky interior. Sleeping sans distractions at the mountain’s base is a great way to become energized and enlightened. Go in the spring when the landscape is just starting to wake up from winter.

Echo Valley Ranch and Spa
Kokanee Creek Provincial Park | Kari Medig

2. Find clarity

Mountains act as empowering role models for strength and stability. Being in their presence seems to transfer a sense of certainty that we can lose touch with over time. By placing yourself in a broader landscape you literally and figuratively see the bigger picture and how you fall into it. 

Navigating trails in Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park by foot gives you the ultimate view of neighbouring valleys and meandering crystal blue lakes. Seeing the spread from above will give you the time and space to put your surroundings and life into perspective. Sometimes all it takes is zooming out from what is in plain sight to see where you’re headed.

Spending time in nature has a lasting effect on us, and research shows that the bigger the nature the better. A retreat to the mountains can teach and shape you by bringing clarity and a wider perspective.
Stone Mountain Provincial Park | Andrew Strain

3. Tap into ‘awe’

Spending time afoot BC’s mountains not only clears your mind but inspires a special sense of wonder and curiosity. It’s the slow jaw-dropping feeling you get when you clear the last ridge to a summit and take in an expansive aerial view, or when your mind becomes still enough to hear a glacial stream trickling downwards in the distance. It’s a feeling similar to disbelief but it lingers far longer and affects us for the better.

Awe and happiness researcher Dacher Keltner of Greater Good Science Center explains that big natural landscapes move you to a state of awe because of both their beauty and how different they are from your usual environment. You become so moved by what is around you that it brings a positive and lasting shock to your system. 


Mount Edziza Provincial Park | JF Bergeron


 When you’re perched on the edge of a mountainside, or looking up from a cutting valley your environment can look especially remote and removed. With their unique glacial proximity, interior BC’s Bugaboos in the Purcell Range are a choice place to stand in awe, perplexed by the way nature has sculpted itself over time. Accompanied by jagged spires of granite, the perfect combination of beauty and uniqueness leaves you entranced in a resetting state of awe. 

Another noteworthy path to awe includes the mind-bending Spectrum Range in Mount Edziza Provincial Park. Sweeping volcanic formations display a geological colour palette completely foreign to most eyes. There is no vehicle access to the park but hiking in or taking a scenic flight makes for a life-altering experience

Purcell Range | Kari Medig

When to visit

The arrival of spring or fall in BC brings the best opportunities for change—to try something new, become unstuck, and widen your perspective through retreating to nature. Whether you choose to challenge yourself physically by hiking BC’s peaks or passively take in the view from afar you will return home reconnected with yourself and the natural world. It’s the power of place, it’s the power of scale—it’s the British Columbia Effect.

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