Flanked by Hudson Bay Mountain to the west and the Babine Mountain Range to the east, the close-knit community of Smithers in the northwestern section of British Columbia is popular with both locals and visitors for its year- round recreational opportunities. Having these outstanding mountains very close by and so easily accessible, it is natural that Smithers has become known for some of the best snowmobiling areas in all of B.C.
A family event
According to Geri Brown from Trails North, a local snowmobile dealership, the riding is fabulous.
“There are lots of different places and it’s possible not to get to all of them in the year,” she said.
Brown and her husband have been operating Trails North for 20 years and have been members of the local Smithers Snowmobile Association for the same length of time. Sledding is a family event with her husband and three daughters snowmobiling regularly in this region, enjoying the abundance of snow that falls every year. Brown said she has been riding since she was 16 and is pleased that her daughters and husband enjoy the sport too.
Snowmobiling in the wilderness around Smithers provides a variety of terrain for riders of all levels of experience. There are excellent climbs for those looking for an extreme adventure and untracked snow but there are also many beautiful areas for family type riding. All of this is possible to reach within 30 minutes of leaving downtown Smithers.
A welcoming group
The Smithers Snowmobile Association has been in existence since the ’70s and the 125-plus members and volunteers regularly groom the trails so they are ready for sledding fans to enjoy. The group also maintains six cabins in the area used to provide shelter for those who need it. The association is open to new members and anyone interested is invited to come to their monthly meetings held at the Hudson Bay Lodge.
The three areas groomed by the dedicated volunteers are The Microwave, The Dome and The Onion.
The Microwave—approximately half an hour south of the nearby town of Telkwa.
The Onion—north of Smithers in Babine Mountain Provincial Park. All levels of sledders will enjoy this area. There are even two propane equipped cabins to shelter in.
The Dome—east of Smithers. From the parking lot riders will find beautiful groomed trails.