British Columbia Wildlife Watch - Lower Mainland Region (Fraser Valley Viewing Sites)
copyright © A.L. Mol  2003
Binoculars Seagull Flying

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Within the Fraser Valley portion of the Lower Mainland Region, the following 33 viewing sites are identified.

       Mission, Harrison Mills (8 sites)
       Abbotsford (1 site)
       Chilliwack, Cultus Lake, Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs (12 sites)
       Hope (12 sites)

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   Mission, Harrison Mills
    Detailed Location Map   (click here for a map showing the location of the following 8 viewing sites)
    WARNING - this will take some time to load!!

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   Abbotsford

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   Chilliwack, Cultus Lake, Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs
    Detailed Location Map   (click here for a map showing the location of the following 12 viewing sites)
    WARNING - this will take some time to load!!

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   Hope
    Detailed Location Map   (click here for a map showing the location of the following 12 viewing sites)
    WARNING - this will take some time to load!!

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   Agassiz Farmlands

The farmlands in and around the community of Agassiz are frequented during the winter months by Trumpeter and Tundra Swans. Occasionally large flocks of ducks may be seen on flooded fields.

Viewing Highlights - Both Trumpeter and Tundra Swans may be sighted in the Agassiz area. Their movements are sporadic. The best times to watch for them is from November through February. In very cold winters, when local water ways, ditches and sloughs freeze over with ice, the swans will move on to other areas.

Directions - There is road access throughout the farmland areas. Please remember to stay on the roads and to keep off private property. When stopping or parking on local roads, pull well off the road and do not block driveways.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Cheam Lake Wetlands Regional Park

Located in Popkum, about 15 km east of Chilliwack, Cheam Lake Wetlands Regional Park encompasses about 93 hectares (250 acres), with almost half being lake and marsh.

Cheam Lake is an example of habitat restoration. The original lake was drained in the 1950's during the process of mining marl from the bottom sediments. A water control structure with a fish ladder was installed in 1992 to allow the lake to reflood. Changes are occurring as the lake establishes, and new wildlife species are beginning to visit the park. This is your opportunity to watch for change.

In addition to wildlife viewing, there are opportunities to picnic and to hike. Please note that all dogs, either on or off leash, are not permitted within the park boundaries. Boats or floatation devices of any kind are not permitted on the lake.

Viewing Highlights - A wide range of birds are easily observed at the park, including many species of waterfowl, songbirds and woodpeckers. Beaver and Muskrat activities are visible throughout the park, especially along the shoreline. During spring and early summer, there are frog choruses.

From late March through August, the park is a good place to look for butterflies, including Mustard (veined) White, Cabbage White, Mourning Cloak, Milbert's Tortoiseshell, Red Admiral, Lorquin's Admiral, Painted Lady, Pale Tiger Swallowtail and Western Tiger Swallowtail.

Directions - Access is from Highway 9 (Agassiz-Harrison Highway). Take Exit 135 from Highway 1 (Trans Canada Highway) and watch for the park and binocular logo logo signs. From Highway 9 turn east onto Yale Road. Follow the signs for almost 2.5 km, then turn left onto Egley Road. The park entrance is at the end of Egley Road.

For more information contact -

Fraser Valley Regional District, Parks Department
8430 Cessna Drive, Chilliwack, B.C. Canada V2P 7K4
phone: (604) 792-0061
fax: (604) 792-9684

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   Chehalis River Hatchery

The Chehalis River Hatchery is responsible for rearing and for releasing a range of fish species, including Coho, Chinook and Chum Salmon, and Steelhead and Cutthroat Trout. This Department of Fisheries and Oceans facility is the largest producer of Chum Salmon on the Fraser River, and in the spring of 1998 an estimated 9 million Chum fry were released.

The hatchery compound is open to visitors year round, and there are self-guiding interpretive signs on-site.

Viewing Highlights - Within the compound, fish of various ages are visible in the troughs and tanks throughout the year. In November, salmon can be seen spawning in the hatchery out-flow channel and in the small stream near the parking lot.

Directions - From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) follow the hatchery directional signs north onto Morris Valley Road. Continue straight to the site.

For more information contact -

Chehalis River Hatchery
16250 Morris Valley Road, Agassiz, B.C. Canada V0M 1A0
phone: (604) 796-9444
fax: (604) 796-9631
e-mail

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   Chilliwack Lake Provincial Park

This park is located at the northern end of Chilliwack Lake. A loop trails provides access to the mouth of the Chilliwack River.There are a number of hiking trails near the park, with distances up to 14 km return and from 0 to 1,000 m elevation gain.

Viewing Highlights - During the month of April look for Steelhead Trout spawning in the river. October to mid November is best for Pink (odd years only), Sockeye Salmon and Coho Salmon.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the Sardis exit (Exit #119) south and onto Vedder Road. Continue through Sardis. Immediately before the bridge over the Chilliwack River turn left onto Chilliwack Lake Road. The park is located 38.9 km from this junction and 19.0 km past the Chilliwack River Hatchery.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland Region
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Chilliwack River Hatchery

The Chilliwack River Hatchery is situated just upstream of the junction of Slesse Creek and the Chilliwack River. It is open daily from 8 am to 3:30 pm. This facility was completed in 1981 and is involved in the rearing of Chinook, Coho, Pink and Chum Salmon as well as Steelhead Trout. In addition to the hatchery building there is a walking tour of the many outdoor troughs, tanks and rearing channels. Group tours should be booked in advance.

Viewing Highlights - Chinook Salmon (summer run) adults arrive at the hatchery in August and September. Coho Salmon are visible in October and December. The period from mid October through November is best for Chum Salmon and Chinook Salmon (fall run). Steelhead Trout adults are present in March and April. In addition to fish, listen for the rattling call of the Belted Kingfisher, a common visitor to the hatchery. Bald Eagles are often seen overhead in the winter months.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the Sardis exit (Exit #119) south and onto Vedder Road. Continue through Sardis. Immediately before the bridge over the Chilliwack River turn left onto Chilliwack Lake Road. The hatchery is located 19.9 km from this junction.

For more information contact -

Chilliwack River Hatchery
55205 Chilliwack Lake Road, Chilliwack, B.C. Canada V4Z 1A7
phone: (604) 858-7227
fax:
e-mail

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   Coquihalla Canyon Provincial Park

This site contains a section of the famous Kettle Valley Railway bed. There are four train tunnels along the path and two bridge crossings over the Coquihalla River. In addition to its history, the canyon scenery is spectacular, the summer trout viewing is good and the spring wildflowers along the trail downstream of the tunnels are worth the extra walk.

Viewing Highlights - The summer months of June, July and August are best to observe the summer run of Steelhead trout migrating up the Coquihalla River. The trout must move through the falls and pools of the canyon. From the bridges, they are easily seen resting in the deep pools of water. These fish spawn further up stream.

Directions - From Highway 1 or Highway 3 take the exit into downtown Hope. From Water Avenue take Old Hope Princeton Highway. Turn left onto 6th Avenue and then right onto Kawkawa Lake Road and cross the bridge over the Coquihalla River. After Kawkawa Lake, the road forks. Take the right fork onto Othello Road and continue to the park entrance. From Highway 5, take the Othello Road exit and follow the directional signs to the park.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland Region
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Cultus Lake Provincial Park

This provincial park is a major recreation destination for residents of the Greater Vancouver area. Located along the east side of Cultus Lake, the park offers many facilites, including several walking and hiking trails, some with access into the International Ridge Provincial Recreation Area.

Viewing Highlights - The summer months are best to watch for Osprey. At least one Osprey nest is visible along Columbia Valley Road. The lush forests are home to many birds including Steller's Jay, Black-capped Chickadee and Winter Wren. During the summer months, as the sun sets, watch for bats feeding in forest openings and along forest edges.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the No. 3 Road exit (Exit #104) located west of Chilliwack or the Vedder Road exit (Exit #119) in Chilliwack and follow the park directional signs.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park

Established in 1941, the 70,844 ha E.C. Manning Provincial Park is located in the Cascade Mountains. There are two major rivers in the park, the Skagit that flows northwest and then south to the Pacific Ocean, and the Similkameen that runs northeast, through the Okanagan and finally into the Columbia River.

Viewing Highlights - More than 200 bird species have been recorded. Woodpeckers and a great variety of songbirds are the most common, but also look for American Dipper, Clark's Nutcracker and Gray Jay. The Beaver Pond is a good site. Other areas include Strawberry Flats, Blackwall Meadows, McDiarmid Meadows and Sumallo Grove. In addition to birds the park is a wonderful place to view a wide range of small mammals. Visitors to the park should take care as there are many resident black bears.

Directions - The park is located along Highway 3 between Hope and Princeton. The West Gate of the park is 26 km from Hope and the East Gate is 48 km from Princeton. The park is easily accessed by car and several public bus companies.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Manning Park Visitor Centre
Box 3, Manning Park, B.C. Canada V0X 1R0
phone: (250) 840-8836
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park (Lodge/Restaurant)

The lodge and restaurant area offers lodging, food and public washrooms. There is a play area for children and picnic tables.

Viewing Highlights - Columbian Ground Squirrel are easily observed in the grass fields around the lodge and restaurant. These tawny coloured critters are visible in the daytime, but frequently retire to cool burrows on hot afternoons. They emerge from winter borrows once much of the snow has melted, usually in May. It is not uncommon for most of these squirrels to begin winter hibernation by early or mid August. Also watch for Clark's Nutcracker.

Directions - The lodge and restaurant area is located on Highway 3 just east of Allison Pass (1341 m).

For more information contact -

Manning Park Resort Inc.
Box 1480, Hope, B.C. Canada V0X 1L0
phone: (250) 840-8822
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park (Beaver Pond)

The Beaver Pond contains a number of beaver dams that separate several pond areas. A short trail leads from the parking area along the pond's edge.

Viewing Highlights - This roadside pond is an excellent place to see a variety of birds, including five species of swallows, Sora, Lincoln's Sparrow, Common Yellowthroat and Yellow Warbler. Hummingbirds visit flowers throughout the summer. Some waterfowl breed here. There are many species of insects including butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies. There are frog choruses in spring. Chipmunks and Red Squirrels are often seen scurrying up or down the trees.

Directions - The Beaver Pond is located along Highway 3, just east of the Visitor Centre, and about 1 km east of the lodge area. There is a parking area off the highway. Look for the binocular logo signs.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Manning Park Visitor Centre
Box 3, Manning Park, B.C. Canada V0X 1R0
phone: (250) 840-8836
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park (Lightning Lake)

Lightning Lake is located west, and a short 3.5 km drive, from the lodge and restaurant area. There is ample parking, picnic areas, canoe rentals and many trails.

Viewing Highlights - Columbian Ground Squirrel colonies are everywhere. They are usually out of their winter burrows from about May through August. Clark's Nutcracker and Gray Jay are almost always observed. Other birds to look for include Spotted Sandpiper, Burrow's Goldeneye, Common Raven and Mountain Chickadee.

Directions - From Highway 3 at the lodge and restaurant area follow the signs to Lightning Lake. The road is paved.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Manning Park Visitor Centre
Box 3, Manning Park, B.C. Canada V0X 1R0
phone: (250) 840-8836
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park (Cascade Lookout)

Along the road to the Blackwall Alpine meadows is a large pullout called Cascade Lookout. From here you can see the highway below, the lodge/restaurant area and all of the Lightning Lake area.

Viewing Highlights - At this elevation there are Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel, a striped small mammal but not a Yellow-pine Chipmunk. They are seen darting in and out of the concrete barriers. Also watch for Clark's Nutcrackers that are very common. A few small colonies of Yelloe-bellied Marmot may be seen along the road up to the lookout.

Directions - From Highway 3 at the lodge and restaurant area follow the signs to Blackwall Alpine. The road is paved to the Cascade Lookout. This is a steep switchback road that should be driven with care. It is 8 km from Highway 3 to the lookout. This road is open once the snow has melted, which varies yearly and closed after Thanksgiving.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Manning Park Visitor Centre
Box 3, Manning Park, B.C. Canada V0X 1R0
phone: (250) 840-8836
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   E.C. Manning Provincial Park (Blackwall Alpine Meadows)

E.C. Manning Provincial Park has one of the most accessible alpine areas, where visitors may drive right up to the flower-filled meadows. There are many trails, both short and long, and the views are spectacular.

Viewing Highlights - In addition to enjoying the beauty of the alpine meadows, there are some good viewing opportunities for Hoary Marmot and Common Pika. Most of the rocky slopes and rock piles near the end of the access road are home to both of these critters. The marmots will be seen first, sitting a-top rocks or moving about the meadows. Pikas are much smaller and a careful observer will see them moving about collecting vegetation for food and bedding. Drive carefully as both species are often crossing the road.

Directions - From Highway 3 at the lodge and restaurant area follow the signs to Blackwall Alpine. The road is paved to the Cascade Lookout and gravel from there to the top. This is a steep switchback road that should be driven with care. It is 15 km from Highway 3 to the meadows. This road is open once the snow has melted, which varies yearly and closed after Thanksgiving.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Manning Park Visitor Centre
Box 3, Manning Park, B.C. Canada V0X 1R0
phone: (250) 840-8836
fax: (250) 840-8700
e-mail

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   Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery

Viewing Highlights -

Directions -

For more information contact -

Fraser Valley Trout Hatchery
34345 Vye Road, Abbotsford, B.C. Canada V2S 4N2
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 852-5420

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   Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve

This site contains a Great Blue Heron colony. It is located in the Wet Bridge training area of the old Chilliwack Armed Forces Base. The colony nests are visible to the west from the parking area and from along the dyke off Sinclair Road.

Viewing Highlights - Heron activity begins in March when the adults begin claiming nests. They are most visible before the leaves are on the trees. Once the young are born, adult herons can be observed all day long entering and leaving the colony. Viewing will continue to late July.

Directions - From Highway 1 (Trans Canada Highway) take the Yale Road Exit. Follow Yake Road West to Sumas Prairie Road and turn right. Continue to the end at Sinclair Road and up onto the dyke. There is a small parking lot on the other side.

For more information contact -

Parks and Recreation Department, District of Chilliwack
8550 Young Road, Chilliwack, B.C. Canada V2P 8A4
phone: (604) 793-9311
fax:

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   Harrison Bay (Kilby Provincial Park)/Chehalis Flats

Kilby Provincial Park is located at Harrison Mills on the Harrison River, opposite Harrison Bay. The Chehalis Flats area is located upstream of the Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) bridge over the Harrison River. Both areas contain important fish and wildlife habitats.

The park contains a small campground and a boat launch.

Viewing Highlights - While many bird species are visible in the river, bay and flats, this area is best known as the winter home of an estimated 700 to 1,100 Bald Eagle. The eagles begin arriving in early November and most have departed by late January. The presence of dead and dying salmon attracts the eagles to this area. The salmon are spawning in a series of rivers and streams that feed into the Harrison River, including the Chehalis River and Weaver Creek systems.

The Trumpeter Swans that utilize Nicomen Slough can be found here almost daily during the winter. Look for the grey coloured swans, young birds born during the previous spring.

Directions - From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) follow the provincial park and binocular logo directional signs south onto School Road at the eastern end of the highway bridge. Continue straight to the t-junction and turn right onto Kilby Road, pass the historic Kilby Store and Farm, and continue to the park.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119
or
BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Hayward Lake Reservoir Recreation Area

Hayward Lake Reservoir Recreation Area is located in northwest Mission, about 60 km east of Vancouver, and is private land owned and managed by BC Hydro. This area is one of many located across British Columbia offering recreational opportunities on lands surrounding hydro reservoirs.

Hayward Lake forms part of the Alouette-Stave-Ruskin generation system that produces power primarily to meet the short term peak electrical demand in the Lower Mainland. The Stave Falls dams and powerhouse were built between 1909 and 1925. A new powerhouse is currently being constructed.

In addition to wildlife viewing, there are opportunities for picnicking, hiking, swimming, boating and fishing.

Viewing Highlights - While wildlife can be found throughout the area, the pond is the best to see a wide range of wildlife, including waterfowl, woodpeckers, swallows, songbirds and beaver activity. An interpretive brochure for the Pond Trail is available from BC Hydro.

Directions - The main access point is from Dewdney Trunk Road. From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) turn north onto 287th Street which becomes Wilson Road. At the t-junction with Dewdney Trunk Road turn right (east) and follow the signs to the site. The southern trailhead of the Railway Trail is located on Wilson Road.

For more information contact -

BC Hydro, Environmental Services
6911 Southpoint Drive, 9th Floor, Burnaby, B.C. Canada V3N 4X8
phone: (604) 528-1877
fax:

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   Hope and Camp Sloughs

Hope Slough and Camp Slough are meandering waterways that drain the area between Chilliwack and Rosedale. The sloughs run primarily through private property but where the road crosses or parallels them, look for wildlife.

Viewing Highlights - The sloughs are visited by waterfowl through the year. Watch for American Wigeon, Wood Duck, scaup, Bufflehead, mergansers and Mallard. From spring to fall, Great Blue Herons are a common sight.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the Vedder Road exit (Exit #119) heading northward. The road becomes Yale Road. At Young Road turn left and continue to a bridge crossing the Hope Slough. Immediately after crossing the slough turn right onto Hope River Road which eventually becomes Camp River Road.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Inch Creek Hatchery

Inch Creek hatchery was built in 1981-1982 for the purpose of enhancing salmon and sea-run trout stocks. It is operated by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. The trout rearing program is a joint effort with the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. In 1997, this facility produced an estimated 1 million Chum Salmon fry, 800,000 Coho salmon smolts, 210,000 Chinook Salmon fry and 20,000 Steelhead Trout.

The water from the fish rearing troughs and tanks is allowed to settle in a large pond before draining into Inch Creek. This pond is home to several large white sturgeon that are part of a research program. The largest sturgeon weighs about 91 kg (200 lb). White sturgeon is the largest North American freshwater fish species. Adults may live over 100 years, reach 6 m (19.7 ft) in length, and weigh over 800 kg (1,760 lb).

The hatchery compound is open to visitors every day (except Christmas Day) from 9 am to 3 pm. Information signs explain the on-site facilities.

Viewing Highlights - A small outflow channel within the hatchery compound provides opportunities to view spawning Coho and Chum Salmon during November and December. White Sturgeon are visible in the outflow pond. Throughout the year young fish in various stages of development are visible in the outside tanks and troughs. There are self-guiding interpretive signs on site.

Directions - From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) just east of Mission look for the hatchery signs directing you onto Hawkins Pickle Road. Continue, without crossing the railroad tracks, until you reach the hatchery located on Bell Road.

For more information contact -

Inch Creek Hatchery
Box 61, Dewdney, B.C. Canada V0M 1L0
phone: (604) 826-0244
fax: (604) 826-1446
e-mail

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   Jones Creek Spawning Channel

Located west of Hope near Laidlaw.

Viewing Highlights - The best viewing occurs during October. Look for Chum and Coho Salmon. Also, in odd-numbered years, there are Pink Salmon.

Directions - From Highway 1 between Bridal Veil Falls and Hope, take the Jones Creek Road exit (Exit #153). Continue eastward about 0.9km to the bridge over Jones Creek. Park well off the road and walk along the river.

For more information contact -

Fisheries and Oceans Canada
#400 - 555 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6B 5G3
phone: (604) 666-6614
fax:

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   Kopp Creek

Kopp Creek is a small stream that provides spawning habitat for Kokanee, a land locked salmon species. Viewing is from the road only.

Viewing Highlights - During September and October look for spawning Kokanee Salmon.

Directions - From Highway 1 or Highway 3 take the exit into downtown Hope. From Water Avenue take Old Hope Princeton Highway. Turn left onto 6th Avenue and then right onto Kawkawa Lake Road. Cross the bridge over the Coquihalla River. Continue to a fork on the road, taking the left fork. This small creek runs under the road at the bottom of the hill.

For more information contact -

Hope and District Chamber of Commerce
Box 370, Hope, B.C. Canada V0X 1L0
phone: (604) 869-2021
fax: (604) 869-2160
e-mail

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   Maria Slough

Maria Slough is located just east of Agassiz and flows through privately owned lands. In several places the road parallels or crosses the slough. These are places to look for fish and wildlife. Remember - the lands surrounding the slough are private.

Viewing Highlights - From mid October through mid November watch for Chum, Coho and Chinook Salmon spawning in the shallows off Chaplin Road. Fall and winter are the best for birds. Trumpeter Swans, and a few Tundra Swans, head for parts of the slough to feed and roost. Small numbers of waterfowl feed and rest, including Hooded Merganser, Bufflehead, scaup, goldeneye, American Wigeon and Green-winged Teal. Throughout the year watch for Belted Kingfisher. In summer, Turkey Vultures may be observed soaring overhead.

Directions - From Agassiz take Lougheed Highway (Highway 7) eastward. Just past the junction of Highways 7 and 9 you cross a bridge over the slough. Turn left onto Seabird Island Road. Continue to Chaplin Road and turn left. When stopping or parking on local roads, pull well off the road and do not block driveways.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Nicomen Slough

Nicomen Slough flows from the Fraser River around Nicomen Island. Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) crossed this large island between the bridges at Dewdney and at Deroche. The slough contains habitat that is important to many species, including Bald Eagles, Trumpeter Swans and spawning salmon. This waterway provides salmon with access into several major spawning rivers, such as Norrish Creek and its tributaries.

Viewing Highlights - The slough provides important wintering habitat for Trumpeter Swan. An estimated 100 to 200 swans frequent Nicomen Slough from late November through January. These same birds move about daily, utilizing habitats at Harrison Bay and Chehalis Flats.

In addition to swans, the slough, particularly the Deroche area, is utilized by a wide range of waterfowl, including teal, wigeon, scaup, Canada goose, goldeneye and merganser.

The presence of spawning salmon attracts hundreds of Bald Eagle. The eagles are usually visible from late November through January sitting in trees or standing in shallow section of the slough.

Directions - The slough is visible at many locations along Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) between Dewdney and Deroche.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Rolley Lake Provincial Park

Rolley Lake Provincial Park is located in northwest Mission, about 60 km east of Vancouver. This 115 hectare park is rich in human history. It was named after James and Fanny Rolley who homesteaded here in 1888. In the early 1900's, the lake was used as a holding pond for shingle bolts destined for the Sholtze mill at Ruskin. A wooden flume sped the bolts 5 km downhill to the mill. In the 1930's the park supported a small Japanese-Canadian hand-logging operation. Today you can still find evidence of these activities, including an old wooden plank road.

The park offers many recreational opportunities including walking, wildlife viewing, swimming, picnicking, camping, fishing and canoeing. No power boats are permitted on the lake.

Viewing Highlights - Douglas' Squirrel and Yellow-pine Chipmunk are common. The forests and forest edge areas are good places to look and to listen for Barred Owl, woodpeckers, chickadees and many songbirds.

Directions - The main access point to the park is from Dewdney Trunk Road. From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) follow the provincial park and binocular logo signs, and turn north onto 287th Street which becomes Wilson Road. At the t-junction with Dewdney Truck Road turn right (east). At Bell Road turn left (north). The park is at the end of Bell Road.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Ruskin Recreation Area

Located just south of Hayward Lake Reservoir Recreation Area, on the east side of the Stave River, below the Ruskin Dam.

Viewing Highlights - A small spawning channel has been constructed along the Stave River, and Chum Salmon may be observed from early October through late November. The presence of spawning fish attracts some bird species, including many Bald Eagle that are visible along the river during the winter months.

Directions - From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) east of 287th Street, turn north onto Hayward Street. Continue straight to the recreation area entrance on the left.

For more information contact -

BC Hydro, Environmental Services
6911 Southpoint Drive, 9th Floor, Burnaby, B.C. Canada V3N 4X8
phone: (604) 528-1877
fax:

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   Sasquatch Provincial Park (Beaver Pond)

The Beaver Pond is a very active place. Look for the evidence of beaver. A trail leads around the pond and from spring through early fall listen for the call of many birds.

Viewing Highlights - The pond is the year round home to at least one family of beaver. The best times to observe them are at dawn or just before sunset. Bird life abounds, including Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers, Red-breasted Sapsucker, chickadees, Steller's Jay, warblers, vireos, and Tree, Northern Rough-winged and Barn Swallows. In late July and early August walk the trail carefully! Thousands of young Western Toad will be sharing the trail with you.

Directions - From Highway 7 in Agassiz follow the signs to Harrison Hot Springs via Highway 9. Follow the park directional signs onto Rockwell Drive. Continue into the park and watch signs leading to Hicks Lake Day Use area.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Sasquatch Provincial Park (Hicks Lake Outlet)

The outlet of Hicks Lake is a small dam and fish ladder. A trail leads along the creek and across the dam.

Viewing Highlights - During the months of March and April look for spawning Cutthroat Trout. They are best seen early in the morning or at sunset.

Directions - From Highway 7 in Agassiz follow the signs to Harrison Hot Springs via Highway 9. Follow the park directional signs onto Rockwell Drive and to the park. Continue into the park and follow signs leading to Hicks Lake Day Use Area.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Sasquatch Provincial Park (Trout Lake Creek)

The Green Point Day Use area is located on Harrison Lake. Just before entering the parking area you cross Trout Lake Creek.

Viewing Highlights - In the lower reaches of the creek (creek mouth to the culvert) look for spawning Chum Salmon in October and November.

Directions - From Highway 7 in Agassiz follow the signs to Harrison Hot Springs via Highway 9. Follow the park directional signs onto Rockwell Drive and to the Green Point Day Use Area on Harrison Lake.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Skagit Valley Provincial Park

Skagit Valley Provincial Park is located in the North Cascade Mountain Range 35 kilometres southeast of Hope, and approximately 150 kilometres east of Vancouver. First established in 1973 as a recreation area, it received official park status in late 1995. The park contains 27,948 hectares of forest, river and marshland habitat, and is situated along the Canada-United Sates border. This park is part of a large international protected area that also includes E.C. Manning Provincial Park, and in the United States the North Cascades National Park (north unit), Ross Lake National Recreation Area and Pasayten Wilderness.

In addition to viewing, the park offers opportunities for camping, picnicking, hiking, botanizing and fishing. From late June to September high water levels in Ross Lake Reservoir provide swimming and boating activities at the Ross Lake campground.

Viewing Highlights - The diversity of habitats in the park result in a wide range of wildlife species. At least 199 bird species have been recorded for the park and a British Columbia Wildlife Watch bird checklist is available. Woodpeckers and many species of songbird are easily found from spring through fall. Some of the most likely to be seen mammals include Columbian Black-tailed Deer, Mule Deer, Snowshoe Hare, Beaver, Common Pika, Townsend's Chipmunk, Red Squirrel and Douglas' Squirrel. More secretive and less abundant are Elk and Moose. Visitors should take caution when in the park, especially on trails and in open areas, as Black Bears and cougars frequent the park.

The roadway and open meadows provide excellent habitat for many butterfly species. The best time to look is from March (once the snow has gone) to September.

Directions - Road access is from Highway 1 (Trans Canada Highway). The Silver/Skagit Road joins Highway 1 (Exit 168) about 3 km west of Hope. It is 37 km from Highway 1 to the park entrance, and a further 23 km to Ross Lake Reservoir and the Canada/United States border. The Silver/Skagit Road is a well maintained, loose gravel road. Motorists are advised to drive with extreme caution. Watch for wildlife and logging trucks on the road.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Skagit Valley Provincial Park (Ross Lake)

Several areas located near the Ross Lake portion of Skagit Valley Provincial Park are excellent places to look for butterflies. The Ross Lake day use area, Chittenden Meadow and Whitworth Meadow all contain plants and flowers that attract more than 20 species of butterflies. A special identification booklet, Butterflies of the North Cascades, will help you to identify the different species.

Viewing Highlights - The best butterfly viewing occurs from March (once the snow is gone) through September. Look for swallowtails, whites, tortoiseshells, Mourning Cloak, Painted Lady and admirals.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the Silver/Skagit Road exit (Exit #168) located about 3 km west of Hope. It is 37 kilometres from Highway 1 to the park entrance and a further 23 km to Ross Lake Reservoir. The Silver/Skagit Road is a well maintained, loose gravel road. Motorists are advised to drive with extreme caution. Watch for wildlife and logging trucks on the road. From Highway 1, Whitworth Meadow is about 54 km, Chittenden Meadow 59 km and the Ross Lake day use area 60 km.

For more information contact -

BC Parks, Lower Mainland District
1610 Mount Seymour Drive, North Vancouver, B.C. Canada V7G 2R9
phone: (604) 924-2200
fax: (604) 924-2244
e-mail

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   Sucker Creek

A small enhancement channel is located next to Sucker Creek (also known as Kawkawa Creek), a short drive from downtown Hope. A boardwalk provides views of the creek and channel.

Viewing Highlighst - From early October to mid November Chum and Coho Salmon may be observed spawning in the creek and channel. Throughout the year, American Dipper may be seen along the waters edge.

Directions - From Highway 1 or Highway 3 take the exit into downtown Hope. From Water Avenue take Old Hope Princeton Highway. Turn left onto 6th Avenue and then right onto Kawkawa Lake Road. Cross the bridge over the Coquihalla River and immediately turn left onto Union Bar Road. The site is located a short distance on the left.

For more information contact -

Hope and District Chamber of Commerce
Box 370, Hope, B.C. Canada V0X 1L0
phone: (604) 869-2021
fax: (604) 869-2160
e-mail

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   Sweltzer River

Located at the north end of Cultus Lake, Sweltzer River drains northward from the lake into the Chilliwack River. A local park and short trail provide access to the river.

Viewing Highlights - Look for Chum Salmon from mid October to mid December. There may also be a few Sockeye Salmon each year and a few Pink Salmon in odd-numbered years (ie. 2001, 2003, ...). Some Coho Salmon are present from late October to late November. During the summer months Belted Kingfisher may be observed along the river.

Directions - From Highway 1 take the No. 3 Road exit (Exit #104) located west of Chilliwack or the Vedder Road exit (Exit #119) in Chilliwack and follow the directional signs to the community of Cultus Lake. As you drop in elevation into Cultus Lake the road crosses a bridge over the Sweltzer River. The park is immediately on the right.

For more information contact -

BC Environment, Lower Mainland Region
10470 - 152nd Street, Surrey, B.C. Canada V3R 0Y3
phone: (604) 582-5200
fax: (604) 930-7119

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   Weaver Creek Spawning Channel

Weaver Creek Spawning Channel is 2932 m long, about the same length as the new runway at Vancouver International Airport. It was constructed in 1965, and is operated by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. The channel compound is open daily when the fish spawn from late September to early November.

When loaded, a total of 32,000 Sockeye Salmon (19,000 females and 13,000 males) and 2500 Chum Salmon use the channel, depositing an estimated 76 million eggs. This means that in each 1 m of channel length there were about 27,285 eggs.

Viewing Highlights - Next to the Adams River east of Kamloops, this is one of the best sites to observe the bright red Sockeye Salmon. There are also some Chum Salmon that use the channel and adjacent creek to spawn, and in odd years (ie. 1999, 2001, ...) a few Pink Salmon can be seen also.

The channel, and all nearby streams, are terrific places to look for American Dippers, a small slate-grey songbird that walks under water. During the cold winter months, these birds are visible in high numbers.

Directions - From Highway 7 (Lougheed Highway) follow the directional signs north onto Morris Valley Road. The channel is past Chehalis River Hatchery, about 12 km from the highway.

For more information contact -

Weaver Creek Spawning Channel, c/o Chehalis River Hatchery
16250 Morris Valley Road, Agassiz, B.C. Canada V0M 1A0
phone: (604) 796-9444
fax: (604) 796-9631
e-mail