The dramatic landscape blended with the rich native culture makes this protected area a special experience. The park offers visitors a chance to explore many unique and interesting features of a volcanic landscape and to learn about the culture and legends of the Nisg̱a’a people.
The Nisg̱a’a Visitor Centre offers guided walks to the volcanic crater
Just outside of the protected area, there are five communities, four of which are Nisg̱a’a villages. Their names are Gitlakdamix (New Aiyansh), Gitwinksihlkw (Canyon City), Lakalzap (Greenville), Kincolith and Nass Camp. All communities are road accessible from the protected area. Within the communities there are amenities like: grocery stores, bed and breakfasts, restaurants, gift shops, gas stations and health services.
Anhluut’ukwsim Lax̱mihl Angwinga’asanskwhl Nisg̱a’a (Nisg̱a’a Memorial Lava Bed Park) is the first provincial park within the Province of British Columbia established to combine interpretation of natural features and native culture. The park is included in the landmark treaty, the “Nisg̱a’a Final Agreement”, between the Government of Canada and the Nisg̱a’a Nation. Nisg̱a’a Memorial Lava Bed Park is also the first provincial park to be jointly managed by a First Nation and BC Parks.
The Nisg̱a’a alkali basalt flow is one of the youngest and most accessible volcanic features in British Columbia. The guided volcanic tours offer the park visitor a chance to hike 3 km through a scenic old growth forest and past a variety of volcanic features to a viewpoint overlooking the crater. To protect the special features of the area, unguided access to the volcanic cone is prohibited. The hike is rated as moderate with some hills and steep stairs.
As the lava spilled from the crater an estimated 250 years ago, it followed a creek bed downslope to Lava Lake and down the Tseax Valley to the Nass River. The lava travelled at different speeds depending on the steepness of the slope. Some types of lava flow and interesting features include:
- Tree cast: formed by burned out tree trunks leaving holes in the lava.
- Lava tube: formed as the top layer cooled and hardened. The crust insulated the lava flowing inside which eventually flowed out leaving the crust as the roof and walls of the tube.
- Pahoehoe; lava that often has a smooth surface or is ropey in form.
- AA: rough and jagged lava.
- Blocky: large chunks of lava.