Highlights and main attractions of Tweedsmuir Provincial Park

An area of vast changes in landscape, from colourful eroded lava domes and rugged coast mountains to alpine forests and deep ocean fjords, Tweedsmuir Park truly is backcountry. Famous for having one of the highest concentrations of grizzly bears in the world, the variation between climate and vegetation zones creates many habitats for wildlife and some stunning surrounding terrains.

Named after John Buchan, Lord of Tweedsmuir, technically Tweedsmuir Provincial Park is split into North (475,000 hectares) and South (506,000 hectares), making a total area of 981,000 hectares of pristine wilderness, on the outskirts of the Bella Coola Valley. The north has very limited access via floatplane or hiking, however the south is cut by highway 20, so it is a little easier to access. This does not mean, however, that area is not as wild, and it is blessed with stunning meadows, hidden lakes and swift rivers, as well as high alpine regions and glaciated mountain ranges. There is also the Rainbow Range, a stunning mix of orange, red and yellow, formed by an enormous eroded lava dome and fragmented rock, where specific minerals were involved in the volcanic formation.

Here you can find Hunlen Falls, the highest waterfall in Canada named after a Chilcotin Chief named ‘Hana-lin’ who used to fish below it.

Where is Tweedsmuir Park?

Location and activities

Tweedsmuir is well-known for its abundance of wildlife, attracted by the variation in vegetation on the wild salmon that spawns in the summer and autumn months. Not only is there one of the largest populations of grizzlies, but also black bears. You can also spot large mammals such as moose, caribou, mountain goat, coyote, cougar and wolf, as well as smaller ones like marmot and wolverine. Prime viewing time for bears is summer to autumn, as they fish rivers such as the Atnarko and Bella Coola and you can sometimes watch them fishing from rocks in the middle of the water flows, then periodically sliding into the cool waters for an après-meal swim.

When it comes to activities, opportunities abound. Explore numerous hiking trails through the rolling alpine or take a fjord trip where you can set up crab and prawn traps, before visiting the Oceanside Hot Springs. Hunlen Falls is largely inaccessible, although flight-seeing in a helicopter is a fantastic opportunity to see this amazing natural phenonemon, as well as sprawling glaciers and stunning woodlands from an aerial view. The area is known for its fantastic angling, with coho, sockey, chum, pink and Chinook salmon, as well as char and trout in the Atnarko and Bella Coola Rivers. Other activities include horseback riding, birdwatching, visiting the Rainbow Range, canoe circuits and guided nature walks. We also recommend you gain an understanding of the Nuxaulk First Nations on a tour of the valley or exploring the ancient petroglyph carvings in the Thorsen Creek area.


Staying at Tweedsmuir Park Lodge you can drift down the Atnarko River, whilst grizzlies fish from the banks.

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