Tumbler Ridge is a year-round recreational destination filled with history you don’t want to miss. Don’t miss out on the dinosaur discovery!
First of all I want to say, “I love Tumbler Ridge.” This planned community in the seemingly ‘middle of nowhere’ is one of the most unique and interesting places I’ve been in a very long time. That doesn’t even count the outlying region that surrounds it.
If you love to explore, hike, camp, interested in dinosaurs, and enjoy year-round recreation then Tumbler Ridge must be on your list of places to visit.
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Just where is Tumbler Ridge?
Located in Northern British Columbia, Tumbler Ridge is off of Highway 97 (Alaska Highway), and only about 1 1/2 hours (aprox) from Dawson Creek. You can access Tumbler Ridge from Chetwynd or Dawson Creek, depending on the direction you’re traveling.
Surrounded by wilderness, Tumbler Ridge is a beautiful well-planned community with aproximately 2400 residents, and it’s townsite covers 1558 kms (602 sq miles). Don’t let the small number of residents fool you. This is a thriving community surrounded by opportunities for adventure by both its visitors and people who live here.
Warning: Please be aware that if you take the shortest route on your GPS, you could end up on a Forest Service Road – which is often not a good idea if you’re driving a car as not all FSRs are well maintained (especially during winter months). Stick to Hwy 29W and/or 52N. Be mindful of 52E (from Alberta), this route is partially gravelled as well. (as per Tumbler Ridge Tourism)
First stop - Tumbler Ridge Visitors Centre
Before you head out on a day of exploration visit the Tumbler Ridge Visitor Centre. Their staff will be more than happy to guide you to the top things to see and do in both the community and outlying region.
Where to Camp in Tumbler Ridge
- Monkman RV Park – we’ve stayed here. Good location, close to the town centre and open year round. This park has 55 drive-through sites complete with hook-ups, 13 winterized sites, ground camping and non-serviced lots as well. Amenities include: rented firepits, picnic tables, playground, hot showers, laundry facilities and non-serviced lots for tents and group camping. It can handle big rigs with no problem. Not much in the way of shade.
- Lions Flatbed Campground – Located in a beautiful creek setting, this campground has 40 sites and is located just 1 km from town. Amenities include; fire pits, firewood, a cooking shelter, picnic areas, playground, hiking trails and swimming hole. Also on site: a sani-station, flush toilets and hot showers. No hook-ups, pets welcome. Open from May to October.
- Tumbler Ridge Golf and Country Club Campground –
Overlooking the Murray River Valley and immediately adjacent to the 9-hole, par 36 golf course, clubhouse and restaurant, this park has 8 private stalls and power hook-ups.
Open during golf season, approximately May through September.
- Gwillim Lake Provincial Campground –
Great fishing, boat launch, day-use picnic tables, playground, firewood, backcountry campsites, water pump, pit toilets, leashed pets welcome. 49 sites.
Open May 15 – Sept 30, 43 km NW of Tumbler Ridge. No reservations.
Global GeoPark - Dinosaur Discovery Gallery
Intrigued by dinosaurs? Then this is where you need to visit.
Tour the Dinosaur Track Sites
Waterfall Tours - larger than Niagara Falls
Considered to be the waterfall capital of the North, this area offers dozens of breathtaking waterfalls to explore – including the thunderous Kinuseo Falls, which is actually larger than Niagara Falls.
If you love waterfalls you are in the right place. Just to name a few options for exploring is The Cascades, Bergeron Falls, Quality Falls, Flatbed Falls, Babcock Falls, and Bullmoose Falls. There’s more so don’t quite there. Many are daily accessible by hiking a few kilometres or longer, and all worth the effort.
Kayaking and Canoeing
Tumbler Ridge is surrounded by water sources such as the converging Murray and Wolverine rivers, providing canoeists and kayakers with an opportunity for outstanding paddling.
Tumbler Ridge Golf and Country Club
Both novice and experienced golfers will enjoy swinging their clubs at one of the most challenging and scenic courses in Northern British Columbia. They have it all, including a pro shop, a putting green, driving range and even a campground. The prices are very reasonable for this 9-hole, par 36 public course.
Tumbler Ridge is a Year-round Destination
Unlimited locations for several outdoor sports are available, including ice climbing. If you’re a beginner, there’s easy places to climb and for the more experienced there’s difficult routes in the Canadian Rockies, noted to be the centre for ice climbing.
If you’re a cross country skier, you’ll enjoy the groomed Nordic trails that are easily accessible.
Add Tumbler Ridge to Your Itinerary
No matter the season there’s something for everyone in the community of Tumbler Ridge. Don’t miss the opportunity for some outdoor adventure and a small town welcome.
Have you visited Tumbler Ridge? I would love to hear about your experiences and favourite things to see and do while there. Comment below please.