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Coquihalla Canyon Provincial Park
About This Park
In the early 1900s, the Canadian Pacific Railway decided a route was necessary to link the Kootenay Region with the BC coast by rail. The railway was built over three mountain ranges. In the Coquihalla Gorge – the river cut a 300 foot deep channel of solid granite. A straight line of tunnels were built through it which are known now as the Othello Tunnels. There are spectacular viewing opportunities available on the trail, through the tunnels and on the bridges. This park highlights the Kettle Valley Railway grade that passes through the canyon and 5 tunnels which were built in 1914.
It contains a 135 hectare land base. It is a popular tourist attraction for the town of Hope and provides viewing, walking, fishing and picnicking opportunities. The hiking trail links to the historic Hope-Nicola Cattle Trail. The engineer Andrew McCullough was an avid reader of Shakespearean literature, and used characters such as Lear, Jessica, Portia, Iago, Romeo and Juliet to name stations of the Coquihalla subdivision.
Please note: Services are available from April 1 to October 31. The Othello Tunnels (located within the park) are closed during the winter months due to unstable conditions, falling rocks and ice. Please contact the park operator for more information.
Know Before You Go
There is no swimming in this park. The beach
area is very rocky and not recommended for use because the river is always unsafe to play and swim in or near.
Activities Available at this Park
Bicycles must keep to roadways. Bicycle helmets are mandatory in British Columbia. Cyclists please dismount and walk through tunnels. Flashlights are strongly recommended for anyone cycling through the tunnels.
Anyone fishing or angling in British Columbia must have an appropriate licence. Check the British Columbia Freshwater Fishing Regulations Synopsis for water specific regulations.
A trail through the Othello Tunnels is an easy 3.5 km round trip. This trail is part of the Trans Canada Trail and features a flat, gravel surface.
Flashlights are strongly recommended for anyone walking or cycling through the tunnels. Some are long and dark, and the gravel surface underfoot may be uneven due to erosion caused by dripping water.
- South Fraser Trail Conditions Report [PDF] (November 9, 2022) (scroll to the Coquihalla Canyon Provincial Park entry)
Pets on Leash
Pets are allowed on the hiking trail only and must kept on a leash at all times. You are responsible for their behaviour and must dispose of their excrement. Backcountry areas are not suitable for dogs or other pets due to wildlife issues and the potential for problems with bears.
Facilities Available at this Park
There are four wheelchair-accessible toilets near the parking lot. The tunnels trail is also accessible with a flat gravel surface. This gravel becomes uneven through the tunnels, so use caution and a flashlight.
There are a few picnic tables available next to the parking lot. Services are available from April 1 to October 31. The Othello Tunnels (located within the park) are closed during the winter months due to unstable conditions, falling rocks and ice.
Pit or Flush Toilets
Pit toilets are only located near the parking lot and trailhead.