70 Mile House
70 Mile House caters to travellers journeying the historic Gold Rush Trail along Highway 97. It is also a key turnoff point for the Green Lake Recreation Area – one of the most popular destinations in the South Cariboo for water sports of all kinds and, along with nearby Watch Lake, a habitat for thriving waterfowl and raptor populations.
When 70 Mile House was established in 1862 as a hostel for Cariboo Wagon Road work crews, the residents probably had no idea that in the next 150 or so years, the area would become one of the Cariboo’s major guest ranch areas. Several family-run ranches continue the tradition of guest-house hospitality, offering a wide selection of outdoor activities that include hiking, horseback riding, fishing, snowmobiling, mountain biking and canoeing. A must-see event is the annual Carriage Trails Driving event with fun for all ages!
The Fishing Highway
Heading north on the Gold Rush Trail (Hwy 97), just south of 100 Mile House at 93 Mile House, is the intersection of Highway 24. This touring route, which connects Whistler to Jasper and Banff national parks, is also known as the Fishing Highway. Connecting to Little Fort at the junction of Highway 5, this route is renowned for the hundreds of lakes nestled in the Interlakes Resort area’s tranquil, scenic settings where the day’s catch might include rainbow trout, lake trout and kokanee.
The Interlakes Resort area includes 50+ lakes within 50 sq. km including the famous larger lakes of Sheridan Lake, Bridge Lake, Horse Lake and Deka Lake. The pristine landscape, crystal clear waters and endless trails lure visitors from around the world to experience an all season outdoor adventure playground. Guest ranches, fishing resorts, cottages, RV sites or private and provincial campsites complement the many amenities this community of 1450 residents has to offer. The world famous Wells Grey Provincial Park and the Trophy Mountains provide the scenic backdrop.
For available roadside information visit one of the three visitor information pull outs at Little Fort, Lac Des Roches and just outside of Lone Butte. Near the east end of Highway 24, the Lac Des Roche rest area sits on top of a plateau and offers an incredible view of Lac de Roche Lake, which is one of the most photographed lakes in British Columbia. Near the west end of Highway 24 is Lone Butte, a peaceful little village named for the solitary volcano plug that rises skyward. Enjoy an invigorating hike up the ‘butte,’ visit the ice cave trail or research the community’s historic past.
Canim Lake is 35km/22mi northeast of 100 Mile House and is one of the largest lakes in the Cariboo at 37km/23mi long. It is surrounded by meadows, mountains and forested hills, with resorts dotting its shoreline and a vast pebble beach that is a remnant of the glacial age. Summertime offers hiking, horseback riding, canoeing, boating and fishing against a backdrop of magnificent waterfalls, volcanic cones near Spanish Creek, and ancient pictographs and pit houses at Deception Creek. Winter fun includes snowmobiling, ice fishing, backcountry skiing and snowshoeing.
Lac la Hache
The village has been dubbed ‘the longest town in the Cariboo’ for how its fishing resorts, ranches and vacation homes dot the lake’s 19km/12mi long shoreline. Long before the lure of wealth brought fur traders to this area, the Secwepemc (shi-HUEP-muh-k) and Chilcotin (chilko-teen) First Nations moved through the region. The Secwepemc established pit houses near present-day Lac la Hache, and the Chilcotins named the lake Kumatakwa, Queen of the Waters. Today, Lac la Hache is one of the most popular lakes along Highway 97, particularly with anglers, power boaters and water-skiers. Winter brings crisp, sunny days for ice fishing and families skiing the slopes at nearby Mt. Timothy.