[The Journal of Lost Time] Wake Up North

A road trip from Smithers, British Columbia to the Nass Valley, Kitimat and the Kemano River, Khutzeymateen Wilderness Lodge and The Great Bear Rain Forest, and Prince Rupert - Chapter 2 of Roam British Columbia: Smithers to Prince Rupert

Un viaje por carretera hacia el norte a través de la meseta de Fraser hasta el norte de la Columbia Británica, Prince George y el glaciar Burnie en Howson Range - Capítulo 1 de Roam British Columbia: The Fraser River to the Burnie Glacier Chalet

by Josiah Roe with visuals by Joseph Gulizia, Sierra Rempel, and Viktoria North

I unzip the window of my roof-top tent and look out to see the sun rising over the tops of lodgepole pines on the far bank of the rapidly-flowing Bulkley River. The low-hanging clouds and early fall fog help diminish and diffuse the sun’s light, giving the campground - Riverside Park - a warm glow.

The indigenous inhabitants of the Bulkley River valley, the Wetʼsuwetʼen, originally called the river Wet'sinkwha, meaning “blue and green river”. European interest in the area was centered around logging, and when the Grand Truck Pacific Railway decided to build a divisional point here in 1913, they named it Smithers for their chairman of the board, Sir Alfred Waldron Smithers.

Now in our second week of our trip we have an established morning routine. First Victoria makes coffee, then Dan make’s sure devices are charging and the solar panels are angled correctly, and then Colton makes breakfast. Today our plan is explore the town of Smithers before pressing west and north into the mountains.

In the last decade Smithers has become famous for its diversity of world-class outdoor adventure activities, from steelhead fishing to skiing and mountain biking on the post-card perfect Hudson Bay Mountain. Its remoteness still helps it retain its charm, and we stop at Smithers Brewing for lunch and to say hi to head brewer Cam, and then we play paper-rock-scissors for who is the DD for the next leg of the trip.

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