Revelstoke is a beautiful town located on the Columbia River, nestled between the Selkirk and Monashee Mountains to the east and west. It was the final destination on our two-week adventure through the Canadian Rockies, and we had a few days to explore this beautiful place. It is quickly becoming one of British Columbia’s premiere outdoor destinations. It is a major crossroads town; both the Canadian Pacific Railway and Trans Canada Highway (across this iconic bridge) cross the Columbia River here. After seeing lots of snow in the mountains, we were happy to return to fall, and the colours in the trees made our visit even more enjoyable.
Our whole trip to the Rocky Mountains was planned around this visit to Revelstoke. We had been invited to a wedding, which is why we decided to take the “long way” to Revelstoke through Alberta, visiting Jasper and Banff before doubling back into British Columbia. After close to a week of driving and non stop adventures, it was nice to finally have a chance to slow down and rest a little bit.
Revelstoke is home to just under 7000 residents, with its history firmly rooted in resources, and has recently become a tourist destination. Revelstoke was established in the 1880’s, when the newly build railroad (the CPR) first arrived. Before the cross country highway was completed (in the 1960s), it was an important stop on the railroad that was built to connect eastern Canada with the Pacific Ocean. Today, the Trans Canada Highway – 640 km from Vancouver to the west and 400 km from Calgary to the East – keeps this important location alive. It has become more than a place to drive through, and there are several attractions to keep you here for a few days.
The Saturday morning after we had arrived, the town center was shut off to traffic (not that there is much anyways) and the town hosts a small farmers market. With the approaching winter, we probably got to visit one of the last ones of the season. We had beautiful weather, and it was a perfect way to start our first day of exploring. We visited a few spots outside of the city as well – including the incredible Enchanted Forest – but most of those pictures we are saving for our second Revelstoke post for later this week. So stay tuned!
Revelstoke is surrounded by beauty, and i’m sure early residents also recognized the tourist value of this destination. Current residents have these forward thinking planners to thank. In 1914, the town requested that Mount Revelstoke be recognized as a National Park, as the residents knew they needed to preserve this unique and beautiful place. This eco-system is important because it is one of the few inland temperate rainforests in the world with towering red cedar and hemlock alongside protected wildlife such as Caribou and bears (both Black and Grizzly).
On the top of Mount Revelstoke is the famous Meadows in the Sky Parkway, one of the main attractions of the National Park. The meadow at the top of this mountain is supposed to be spectacular in the summer months when the flowers are in full bloom. We visited in October, and the road was unfortunately closed for the season, because of the first snowfall. As a result, we were only allowed to drive 14-km up the road, where we found an incredible view of the Columbia River Valley below, where we watched as much of the the sunset as possible (the park ranger informed us that the gates to the park would be closed at 6pm).
It was time for the main event – the wedding that brought us here in the first place -which held on Sunday evening at the Revelstoke Mountain Resort. The resort was opened for the 2007/08 ski-season, and has the largest vertical drop (1713 meters) in North America. The reception was help up above the main ledge, so we got to take the gondola up and snapped some cool pictures before dinner. It was an amazing event!
One of the best things to do in Revelstoke, especially in the summer is the roller coaster that runs down the side of the mountain here. We didn’t get to try this perWe were dressed in suits and dresses, so we didn’t get a chance to take the adrenaline ride down the mountain. We did see some others doing this, so we included a few pictures of them too!
We hope you enjoy some of our favourite pictures from Revelstoke – stay tuned for our second Revelstoke post (Enchanted Forest & Around Revelstoke) coming out later this week!