Given that I grew up in Smithers, I put my hand up for this "shift" right away. For a week in mid July the Google Trekker was in Smithers and the Bulkley Valley and we explored some of my long-time favourite spots, and discovered some new ones as well.
Tasha had already met up with Gladys Atrill from Tourism Smithers and covered Moricetown Canyon and Twin Falls Trail. Gladys lives and breathes the Bulkley Valley and was an excellent host and guide throughout the week!
Early Tuesday morning we had a call from Shane Menzel at Highland Helicopters that we had a small weather window and we had to get to the base right away. Over the next few hours we flew in and trekked ridges with views of Hudson Bay Mountain and Crater Lake, and explored Bulkley Adventures Base Camp on Hudson Bay Mountain, and multiple glaciers and waterfalls.
Over the following days between rain showers, we trekked hiking trails along Hudson Bay Mountain, scouted some of the areas signature mountain bike trails, and hiked in the Bulkley Valley Nordic Ski Centre. To the west, we trekked at Hankin Evelyn Backcountry Skiing Recreational Area, Taltzen Lake and the fossil beds at Driftwood Canyon Provincial Park.
On our final day, the sun shone bright for us and we took full advantage. Hudson Bay Mountain, Smithers' local ski hill, features unique ski cabins along the Prairie T-bar. Weaving through the trails with the trekker on my back, we captured the essence of small town ski hill culture for all to see. After that, one final trip up the mountain for a view of the valley with the tops of all three ski lifts in view was in order.
Just to squeeze it in, we also had time to hike Call Lake Ridge Trail with amazing views of the Bulkley Valley and Hudson Bay Mountain before a quick photo op with Smithers' Mayor, Taylor Bacharach, on Main Street to end off a fantastic week.
Thank you to Smithers and everyone that helped along the way.