Get out and explore the province’s abundance of snowmobiling, cross-country and backcountry skiing, and snowshoeing sites and trails this winter.
Recreation Sites and Trails BC (RSTBC) offers hundreds of managed snowmobile, cross-country/backcountry ski and snowshoe areas throughout B.C.
Provincial winter-use sites and trails are managed and maintained through partnerships with local recreation groups, community organizations, First Nations, local governments and forest companies.
In October, RSTBC and partner groups completed installation of two new weather stations at the Telkwa Mountains Snowmobile Trail near Houston (Houston Snowmobile Club) and Hankin-Evelyn Backcountry Trails near Smithers (Bulkley Backcountry Ski Society).
RSTBC provided approximately $9,500 in funding for the project. The weather stations, worth an estimated $15,500 combined, were donated by Capstone Mining Corp. and installed by volunteers including ERM Consultants Canada Ltd.
The repurposed cellular/satellite telemetry stations will allow Avalanche Canada to remotely download hourly weather data for their forecasts, and will be publicly available online to recreational users.
The Telkwa snowmobiling and Hankin-Evelyn backcountry skiing areas will be included in Avalanche Canada’s “Hot Zone Reports” pilot project, which presents detailed avalanche, snowpack and terrain observations, and offers travel/risk management advice. In 2016, RSTBC provided a total of $90,000 in funding for avalanche safety initiatives including the Mountain Information Network and Hot Zone project.
The new Hot Zone Reports are part of the Province’s ongoing goal of improving avalanche awareness, education and safety information so recreational users can make informed decisions on where, when and how to travel safely in the backcountry by understanding risks and taking necessary precautions.
Backcountry recreationalists using the Grizzly Plateau area/trail in the Telkwa Mountains are reminded to adhere to restrictions while snowmobiling or skiing to minimize potential encounters with and help protect northern caribou populations.
Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations–
“Recreation Sites and Trails BC’s snowmobiling, cross-country and backcountry skiing, and snowshoeing areas offer excellent recreation opportunities for families in and visitors to communities throughout B.C. – a safe and rewarding way to explore the province’s outdoors this winter.”
Shea Long, Houston Snowmobile Club president–
“We are proud of working with Recreation Sites and Trails BC on the new weather station that will help provide users of the Telkwa Mountains Snowmobile Trail and area with current weather and avalanche conditions.”
Jay Gilden, Bulkley Backcountry Ski Society president–
“Recreation Sites and Trails BC has been the source of invaluable support and assistance to the Hankin-Evelyn Backcountry Trails project from inception, to now installing the new weather station facility. This local snow, wind and temperature information will help improve safety not only for the Hankin-Evelyn area but for the entire region.”
Gilles Valade, Avalanche Canada executive director–
“We very much appreciate our longstanding partnership with Recreation Sites and Trails BC. They have sponsored some of our most innovative and educational projects, and with their help we’re making a difference in public avalanche safety.”
- Recreation Sites and Trails BC oversees 92 managed snowmobile areas, 50 cross-country ski areas, 40 backcountry ski areas and 8 snowshoe-specific areas with local partner groups across B.C. Many cross-country ski areas also offer snowshoe trails.
- Since 2009, RSTBC has invested more than $1 million in funding for winter-use recreation sites and trails, and approximately $500,000 for avalanche awareness, education and safety.
Listen to Thomson on winter recreation and avalanche safety:
Recreation Sites and Trails BC: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca
Search RSTBC’s managed snowmobiling, cross-country/backcountry skiing and snowshoeing areas: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca/search/search-facility-activity.aspx
Telkwa Mountains Snowmobile Trail: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca/search/search-result.aspx?site=REC169495&type=Trail
Hankin-Evelyn Backcountry Trails: http://www.sitesandtrailsbc.ca/search/search-result.aspx?site=REC98167&type=Site
Avalanche Canada Hot Zone Reports: