THINGS TO DO IN TELKWA
Telkwa is surrounded by spectacular lakes, picturesque rivers and breathtaking mountains that offer a beautiful experience year round.
Whether you love to hike into an alpine lake, raft through whitewater rapids, ski down fresh powder slopes or battle the will of large steelhead; Telkwa has year-round wilderness adventures. Local sightseeing and adventure tour operators offer world-class hunting and sport fishing, hiking, canoeing, rafting, kayaking, bird watching and wilderness photography explorations. The adventures continue in the winter with phenomenal ice climbing; cross-country, backcountry and downhill skiing; snowmobiling, and snowshoeing.
Historic Walking Tour
Take a step back in time and explore what you might have seen on the streets of Telkwa 100 years ago. Learn a little about the Village’s history and the people who used to live here.
This self-guided walking tour is designed to help you envision what you might have seen in Telkwa in the early 20th century. Please be mindful that today many of the stops on this tour are now private homes and not open to the public. Be sure to check out the Museum, Village Office and St. Stephen’s Anglican Church to view some interesting facts and artifacts.
Be sure to be mindful of safety as you will find yourself crossing the highway. Please use the crosswalks.
When the rod is bent to the near breaking point and the line is screaming off the reel, you know that you are in a truly special place, Telkwa. Our many streams and rivers with world class fishing, start their lives at the tops of snow-capped glaciers. They wind for miles through dense virgin forests to the valley floors below. Down here is where you often find yourself competing with eagles and ospreys, otters and bears, all searching for the same elusive trout and salmon hiding in the deep, crystal-clear pools. Magical names like the Morice, the Babine, the Kispiox, and the Bulkley send adrenaline rushing through the arteries of knowledgeable anglers. All the Steelhead and salmon must pass first through the mighty Skeena. Salmon over 41 kilograms (90 pounds) have been taken in the Skeena! There are 68 major rivers that flow through this vast area, each offering its own brand of excellent fishing. If you prefer to do lake fishing, the Telkwa area provides tranquil lakes that are sources of endless pleasures. Our lakes provide magnificent opportunities to catch fish like char, kokanee, cutthroat and rainbow trout. The Babine Lake offers char that grows up to 20 pounds! Whether you want to test your skill against the fighting spirit of a Steelhead or to experience the therapeutic serenity of lake fishing, Telkwa offers world class fishing spots.
Review BC's Fishing regulations here.
BOATsmart regulations can be found here.
Are you a free rider who's looking for big drops, or a cross-country rider wanting to explore some tressels and teeter-totters? The Telkwa area offers a diverse group of trails for every level of ability. The rides vary from an easy trail ride around Tyhee Lake and up McDowell Lake trails, to a moderate climb into Silver King Basin, and an extended day trip over the Telkwa Pass. Into exploring? Try a day trip into Call Lake or Babine Mountain Provincial Park trails. Be sure to pick up A Guide to Mountain Biking in the Bulkley Valley Area that provides how to get to the trail head, a large scale trail map and profile, and a list of significant junctions and other points along the trail in the form of a distance log. Bike trip tours are available and can be booked through the bike shop. Happy Riding!
Total length: 4.9 km loop
Time: 1-1.5 hours
Rating: Easy - moderate
Distance from Telkwa: 10 km.
Trek across valleys and mountain ranges for a multi-day excursion or enjoy a couple hours of easy walking on Telkwa's scenic trail system that links to Tyhee Lake's trails. There is no end to the alpine lakes and meadows to explore. Hiking is fun for all ages and a great way to see wildlife and pristine wilderness areas. Bald eagles, osprey, moose, bear, deer, furry marmots, and songbirds are just some of the animals you may see. Guided tours are available and trips can be customized to suit your vacation needs and abilities. If you want to do some hiking on your own, be sure to pick up the local trails book which provides directions and maps of the hikes. Friendly staff in the outdoor shops will gladly assist with directions, advice and supplies as well.
Smithers Golf and Country Club
For those seeking a more challenging golf game, check out the Smithers Golf and Country Club, just 13 km west of Telkwa. Established over 65 years ago, this Club is one of the 18-hole championship courses located between Prince Rupert and Prince George and features a driving range, full-service clubhouse and pro-shop. If you are interested in taking golfing lessons link up with our friendly, professional golf instructor on site. Click on this website to view more on Smithers Golf and Country Club.
Berry and Mushroom Picking
Telkwa and area flourishes with a wide variety of berries. If you have never tasted a huckleberry here's your chance! Sweet, deep purple, shiny berries burst with juice and flavour and are plentiful in old logged areas throughout the valley. Huckleberries make the best pies, syrups, jellies, and jams. The hardest part of picking huckleberries is getting them into the pail, as it is so tempting to eat them. Some other berries that are commonly found include high bush cranberries, blueberries, saskatoons, wild strawberries, raspberries, salmonberries, crowberries, and bog cranberries. For more information on berries found in our area stop at the local bookstores, and the friendly staff will be glad to assist you. Be sure to ask locals where the best picking spots are located. Huckleberries have a high sugar content, grow on shrubs 1-3 feet high in old cleared logged or burned areas. High Brush Cranberries are bright red, tangy tasting, berries with a large pit in the center often used for jams and jellies. They are found along many roadsides, rivers, lakes and clear cuts.
Mushrooms galore. If you are the harvesting type and enjoy adding gourmet mushrooms to your meals, check out the woods of the Telkwa area. Each spring, aspen stands flourish with morels. Later in the summer, the giant puffballs, inky caps, shaggy manes, chanterelles, boletus and of course the popular pine mushrooms pop out. There is a large commercial pine mushroom picking industry with most of these mushrooms being shipped overseas to the Orient. As with any mushroom picking, one must be able to properly identify the mushroom and know how to navigate in the woods. For more information on mushrooms in our area check with local bookstores.
The region around Telkwa affords great sightings of birds for the novice and experienced birder. Spring will bring migratory birds in great numbers as they head to breeding grounds in Alaska and the Arctic. The Arctic Tern is seen after its long journey from the southern areas. A walk by the river will bring sightings of the spunky American Dipper and the common Merganser. Looking up you can see great flocks of sandhill cranes, Canadian geese, swans and white-fronted geese. Summer months present the birds who will stay to rear their young. Around Tyhee Lake, warblers, sparrows, belted kingfishers and eagles nest. Lots of birds on the water as well as a variety of shorebirds including the American Bitterns, Yellow-Headed and Red-Winged Blackbirds. When winter returns to the land those hardy souls who remain entertain many birders who feed them. Chickadees, repolls, siskins, varieties of woodpeckers all take advantage of wild food and seed provided. A checklist of birds of this region is available at local bookstores.
What to Look For
Aspen forest is the home to many kinds of animals. If you look at the smooth bark of the trunk of an Aspen tree, you can see that it has a green colour. Aspen are one of the few types of trees that have a lot of chlorophyll in their bark as well as in their leaves. This allows the bark to make carbohydrates through photosynthesis and is the reason that it is an important food for many animals.
To figure out what was eating the bark, look for teeth marks where the tree bark was peeled. Mice, moles and snowshoe hare leave small teeth scrapes, usually near the base of the tree, while porcupines typically chew large patches at varying heights and will even destroy a tree by eating the bark off right around it, eventually killing it. Moose and deer usually leave bare patches with large scrapes between 1 to 3 metres off the ground.
Sometimes male moose and deer will rub their antlers against trees, leaving irregular scrape marks. Some deer will strip bark when they eat it, leaving long narrow scars on the trunk. With some searching, you may find claw marks of a black bear who had climbed a tree for a safe escape. In some trees, you might see what looks like a pattern of small holes, the size of sunflower seeds, in the bark. These are the work of a woodpecker called a sapsucker, who drills the holes to let them fill with sticky sap that then catches insects for the woodpecker to collect later.
Near ponds and the river, check sand bars and mud for tracks of animals. Moose, deer, coyotes and even bears often pass through the area unseen except for their tracks. River otters may be seen fishing and playing on the Telkwa River, particularly in the winter.
Look for small holes in the snow that are breathing holes left by moles and mice to let fresh air into their winter tunnels. You might see this best in the open fields by the Aldermere townsite. As the snow melts in the spring, the network of grassy tunnels the moles and mice created for their winter life under the snow is left behind.
What to Listen For
In the spring and summer, perhaps the most common sounds are those of the almost 100 species of song birds that nest in these forests. But don't be fooled – some creatures have songs that may only sound like birds! The night time trill of the northwestern toad has left many people wondering what kind of bird they might be listening to. Also listen for a deep thumping sound like a heartbeat that slowly gets louder and faster. This is the mating and territorial call of the male Ruffed Grouse which can be heard almost anywhere along the trail.
The tapping of woodpeckers is not only their means of catching bugs under the bark of trees, but it is also a way of identifying their territory.
You may hear the lonesome call of loons on Tyhee Lake, or on hot days, the buzzing sound of cicadas that is a large insect that sounds like the hum of electrical wires.
In the fall, male moose and deer may be heard grunting and rattling their antlers against trees as they go through the rut, preparing to mate. In some years you may even hear the bugle of an elk on a cool October morning.
Telkwa is surrounded by majestic mountains all around, which offer snowmobilers of all ages and skill levels, a myriad of exciting recreational opportunities.
Some of the more popular riding areas include The Big Onion, 20 km north of Smithers in Babine Mountain Provincial Park; The Dome, 25 km north of Smithers; and The Microwave, which is 19 km southeast of Telkwa.
The SSA has a Partnership Agreement with the Province of BC, Recreation Sites & Trails Branch and BC Parks to maintain seven emergency shelters, and groom approximately 100 km of trails in the immediate area.
Our annual snowfall averages 7.5 ft. and our average winter temperatures range from -5.2° C and – 12° C.
Our riding seasons stretches from November through to May.
Membership or Day Passes are required to access our riding areas.
It's the middle of winter, and it's far too cold outside to play golf or go stand in the frozen river. So what do you do? How about grabbing a few buddies, hauling a portable shelter onto the middle of a frozen lake, drilling a hole in the ice and sitting around with good friends and family while you wait for the fish to bite?
Telkwa is known worldwide for our fishing, and when the winter roles around, there is still no exception.
Telkwa has two outdoor rinks for public use. Whether its taking the kids for a skate, or starting up a game of hockey, we have beautiful outdoor rinks available for everyone.
Woodland Rink is located in the Woodland Subdivision and Dockrill Rink is located on Riverside Street.
Telkwa is known for its trails and hiking, and this is just as true in the winter as it is in the summer. If you like hiking to take in the beauty of nature, why not try snowshoeing? Snowshoeing today offers something for anyone interested in the outdoors. Whether you're looking for an afternoon walk around a neighborhood trail, a weekend hike, access to backcountry powder, mountain views, a new winter workout, or just some family fun.
Downhill Skiing & Snowboarding
If you enjoy skiing we have it right here in our back yard. Hudson Bay Mountain with skiing & snowboarding for all ages and stages of skills is just a short drive away.
For more information please click here.
Cross Country Skiing
Many say that the winter trails are even more stunning than the summer ones around our town. If you are interested in getting out and getting in some winter exercise, or in taking in the scenic majesty around Telkwa, why not try cross country skiing?
For more information please click here.