is located 310 km (193 miles) north of Prince
George and 102 km (64 miles) west of Dawson
Creek at the junction of Hwy 29 and Hwy 97. Situated on the
eastern foothills of the northern Rocky Mountains Chetwynd is nestled
in a large valley in which the Pine River flows through.
Ralph L. T. Chetwynd
Chetwynd was originally known as Little Prairie but was later changed
officially in 1959 in honour of a provincial minister, Ralph L.
T. Chetwynd. Ralph L. T. Chetwynd was instrumental in the development
of a railway line linking Chetwynd with the Northern Alberta Railway
terminus at Dawson Creek.
Chetwynd is also known as the 'Chainsaw Sculpture Capital of the
World.' Various wooden sculptures are located throughout Chetwynd
with easy viewing made possible. Make sure you look at and print
out the free map produced by the district for locations of the various
sculptures, now totalling over 45 in number.
Chetwynd's economy has traditionally revolved around mining, forestry,
oil and gas industries, plus the building of W.A.C. Bennett and
Peace Canyon Dams at Hudson's Hope
64.5 km (40 miles) away. The largest employers in the Chetwynd area
are Canadian Forest Industries and Duke Energy (Pine River Gas Plant),
Tembec Pulp Mill and West Fraser Mills.
Prairie Heritage Museum
Operating during the summer season, the Little Prairie Heritage
Museum is housed in the old 1949 general store and post office building.
Here you will enjoy the displays and old artifacts that include:
antique farming equipment, hand-made quilts and various trapping
Chetwynd is a playground for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.
In all four seasons, combined with forests everywhere, abundant
wildlife for nature viewing or hunting, snow-packed mountains, crystal-clear
water in the rivers and lakes teeming with fish, Chetwynd makes
a great place to visit or call home.
One walk you'll want to do when visiting Chetwynd is the walk up
Old Baldy Hill. From the top of hill, around a 210-metre (689 feet)
climb, you will see a beautiful panoramic view of Chetwynd and the
surrounding area of Little Prairie Valley with the Northern Rocky
Mountains in the background.
There are two routes that go through Chetwynd Community Forest up
Old Baldy Hill - Old Baldy Trail about 2 km (1.2 mi) long steep
and in good shape and Old Baldy Ridge that is a little rougher about
3 km (1.9 mi) long. Both hikes offer some scenic viewpoints or benches
to admire the panorama.
For local trail information concerning all the trails in Chetwynd,
make sure you visit either the Chetwynd Tourist Info Centre or the
District Office. There are free maps available as well as good information
regarding various difficulties or possible dangers.
Please remember if you do happen to be about in the bush or along
trails that there could be bears in the immediate area. Please take
the usual precautions such as carrying a high-quality pepper spray,
travel in groups and watch and control your dog along the trails.
During the winter time, Chetwynd makes a good destination if you
enjoy snowmobiling. There are some great areas up the Hasler Forest
Service Road where you can find a number of trails, some into the
2,134 metre (7,000 feet) elevation range. Other areas include Bickford
Mountain. Telephone the Chetwynd Snowmobile Club for more information.
Chetwynd also enjoys excellent indoor recreational opportunities
throughout the community. The recreational complex in town offers
a wave pool, sauna, large-sized hot tub, ice arena, six-sheet curling
rink and a library.
Springs Golf Course
For golfers there is a small course 15 km (9 miles) south of Chetwynd
on Hwy 29 called Natural Springs Golf Course. Although only a 9-hole
course, you'll find that it is quite challenging offering lots of
entertainment and fun and is situated alongside the Sukunka River.
Telephone: (250) 788-3944.
River Regional District
Chetwynd is situated at the crossroads for easy travel into other
communities of the Peace River Regional District. Other communities
within a close distance from Chetwynd include Tumbler Ridge to the
south, Dawson Creek to the east and Hudson's Hope to the north.
You can try Westwind RV Park which is conveniently located close
to the centre of Chetwynd offering large full-service sites, tenting
and wireless internet. Telephone: (250) 788-2190. There is Wildmare
Grove RV & Campground, south of town at Wildmare Creek, that
has both full-service and partial hookup. Telephone: (250) 788-2747.
Also Caron Creek RV Park located 16 km (10 mi) west of Chetwynd
on the Hart Highway, offers full-service with a total of 40 sites.
Telephone: (250) 788-2522.
Lake Provincial Park
For non-serviced camping Moberly Lake Provincial Park is only 30
km (19 miles) away north on Hwy 29. Here you can find a large campground
facility with 109 vehicle accessible campsites. Moberly
Lake features a nice, clean fishing lake complete with a white
sandy beach for swimming.
Lake Provincial Park
For other provincial parks close by to Chetwynd, one on the way
to Tumbler Ridge is Gwillim Lake
Provincial Park. Here you can find a number of campsites set along
the beautiful scenery of Gwillim Lake that are very peaceful, relaxing
and quite unspoiled.
Falls Provincial Park
To see some famous waterfalls in the area try Sukunka Falls Provincial
Park located approximately 45 km (28 miles) south of Chetwynd towards
Tumbler Ridge. Take Hwy 29 south and turn off on the Sukunka Forest
Service Road. Travel on this road for 21 km (13 miles), then look
for the parking lot for Sukunka Falls.