Tour Planning ... Forgotten Highways

Since the completion of the Coquihala Highway, the once famous highways of the vacationing traveler have been all but abandoned to the faster routes. Our tour will take you back in time to these picturesque and less traveled routes. We stop at all the historic sites and towns along the way and travel into yesteryear to once again explore Canada's Historic Routes.

Day 1
Early morning coach departure through the lush lower mainland delta for the mighty Fraser Canyon. Our first stop will be in Hope: the gateway to the mountains. We stop briefly in the town of Yale. Gold once made Yale the largest town west of Chicago and north of San Francisco. It was the trading post for the Hudson's Bay Company. It was also the head of navigation, as it was the sternwheelers first town to be incorporated on mainland British Columbia. Once established it brought prospectors from Victoria and Vancouver up to Yale where they would continue on foot to the gold fields.

We drive through Spuzzum, which is known, to most Canadians as the smallest town in the world. This was the site of a Cariboo Wagon Road toll station that collected fees on the freight headed for the gold fields further north.

We now take a wild ride on the 'Hell's Gate Airtram'. Here the towering rock walls of the Fraser plunge toward each other forcing the waters through a passage only 100 feet wide. The foaming canyon torrent and the grandeur of the surrounding mountains make Hell's Gate a photographer's dream. Aboard the Airtram you'll enjoy a fascinating commentary by your flight host.

We continue on our journey through the many towns along the forgotten highways. We pass through Boston Bar, Lytton, Spences Bridge, Cache Creek. We visit the famous 'Hat Creek Ranch' and learn about this early historic settlement. (lots of photo stops along the way) We stop for the night in the big city of Kamloops.
Overnight Kamloops (BLD)

Day 2
Its more nostalgia as we now travel south through the Okanagan (home of the legendary 'Ogopogo') with stops in Vernon, Kelowna, (Calona Winery Tour) Penticton, Oliver, Osoyoos, Grand Forks and finally stop for the night in the ancient Canadian mining town of "Trail".
Overnight Trail (BLD)

Day 3
Today we venture along more forgotten highways and visit Castlegar, Nelson, Salmo, Creston, (Creston Museum) Cranbrook, Kimberley. We stop for the night at the Bavarian City of Kimberley.
Overnight Kimberley. (BLD)

Day 4
After a relaxing morning we head north through the Columbia Valley where we stop for a relaxing and rejuvenating soak in the hot pools at 'Radium Hot Springs'.
Leaving Radium we travel further north on Highway #95. The highway follows the 'Columbia River Wetlands', known as the "Serengeties" of North America, all the way to the picturesque village of Golden. offering spectacular vistas. The Columbia River Wetlands is the major migratory path for over 265 species of birds. View the wonder of waterfalls, whitewater rapids, alpine lakes, and majestic mountains, as they are the crown jewels of the Canadian Rockies
Overnight Golden (BLD)

Day 5
We now travel through the Rockies and into the legendary city of Banff in "Banff National Park". Some of the sights we will be seeing are Bow Lake, Peyto Lake, Lake Louise, and of course the magnificent and world famous Banff Springs Hotel. (some time will be allowed for shopping for souvenirs) After spending ample time in Banff we will venture north via the Icefield Parkway and stop to view the Columbia Glacier and take a wild ride on the Snow-Coach to the top of the glacier. We now head for Jasper National Park, which is famous, for its wildlife and beautiful mountain scenery.
Overnight Jasper Area (BLD)

Day 6
This morning we travel homeward through the Great Canadian Rocky Mountains (We stop to view Mt. Robson - Canada's Highest Mountain) to the historic town of Lillooet.

One of the stops we make are to visit "Painted Chasm" At the close of the Ice Age about 10,000 years ago, a stream fed by melting ice cascaded over a falls forming this chasm by cutting into some of the lava flows that helped to build the Fraser Plateau. The horizontal layering shows individual lava flows here. When the glacial ice finally disappeared the flow of the meltwater stopped. The Chasm is a brilliant display of bright orange and pink rock and a must see.

Lillooet's history is entrenched in the B.C. Gold Rush of 1860. Here you can step back in time and see the offerings of the past as chronicled at the local museum. Lillooet is on the Cariboo Pavilion Road (the first wagon road to be surveyed in B.C. and the route to the gold fields).
Overnight Lillooet (BLD)

Day 7
Today we travel on another forgotten highway through the Pemberton Valley and eventually end up back in Vancouver. We stop in the luxury resort town of Whistler and take in some of the sights of the world's best resort area. The snowy peak of Mount Currie shadows the gorgeous landscape of the Pemberton Valley. At the valley floor, a distinct hometown pride exists within the villagers who have made their livelihood from the fertile soil for generations. Pemberton became a hub of activity in the 1860's for the men travelling to the Cariboo Gold Rush. As we approach Vancouver we will stop for a photo opportunity because the view is really out of this world

End of tour (BLD)