Downtown Stewart Angie at Head of Portland Canal Tidal Flats of Stewart BC
the remote wilderness of Canada's north, situated at the end of a
inlet that forms the southern boundary of the Alaskan Misty Fjords, the
location of Stewart, B.C. is spectacular.
At the head of the Bear River valley, this gem of the north coast has
more to offer than the gold sought by miners in the late
Surrounded by jagged snowy mountain peaks,
glaciers, and ice-fields, the region is home to magnificent wild
grizzlies to bald eagles.
built by the mining industry at the end of the 1800's, Stewart grew to
colorful bustling town of 10,000 people.
The Premier Gold Mine, once the largest in the world, was located in
region. In the 1980's, the closure of
the Granduc copper mine, the last major mine in the region, led to
of employment which saw the town shrink to a population of 500 people.
the economic ups and downs of the mining industry, the Eskay
has been operating just 36 km from Stewart. There
is the possibility of a few more mines opening up in the area and big
are being spent on mineral exploration in the region.
Financial stability is looking closer for the
locals who stuck around through the many lean years. There has
been provincial government talk of
an access road linking BC's north-central resource rich interior to the
sea port facilities of Stewart which would provide further economic
development although this proposal is with some controversy with the
Native community and locals who would like to preserve the lovely
character of the small town.
rustic beauty and appeal of
Stewart's magnificent location have
continued to be
an attraction to visitors who come to see the many natural
While passing through the area tourists will
find the quaint charm of the
renovated old hotels and inns, and
charming restaurants in
Located just a mile down the road, all traffic to the neighbouring Alaskan community of Hyder, the first point of Alaska accessible by car from the southern US states and Canada, must pass through Stewart. Despite its small population, the town has the facilities of a much larger town with a hospital serviced by two doctors, a school to grade 12, an ice-rink, and a lovely park pavilion and board walk on the tidal flat waterfront. There is even a swimming pool that has been decommissioned.
Despite its northerly location, Stewart has mild coastal winter weather, ranging from plus 5 to minus 5 degrees, and often the snow melts off the ploughed roads. With a fair amount of precipitation, the picturesque snow covered peaks of the metal roofs in the village and the surrounding mountains give the town the air of a Swiss village or a charming town on a fjord in Norway in the winter. All of the region's untouched powder has attracted the attention of the heli-skiers and in 2006, Bell 2 will be continuing their heli-skiing operation out of the village's Ripley Creek Inn which will see up to 15 well-heeled visitors each week. The future of the area is definitely becoming rosier!
certainly has the potential to become the hottest northerly
community in North America for active yuppie retirees, artists,
connoisseurs, and interesting characters looking to the majestic
of BC's north as an escape from the hectic bustle of the south.
With local access to healthcare and other
city amenities, they can fill their days exploring mountains, glaciers,
hiking trails, enjoying ocean activities, heli-hiking, and grizzly bear
(in Hyder) in the summer, and heli-skiing, touring, and ski-doing in
winter. With easy driving access to many other recreational wilderness
northern BC, the Yukon, and Alaska, Stewart visitors and residents can
to Ketchikan, Alaska on the Monday and Thursday mail plane from Hyder,
Alaska which they could link to summer ferry services from Seattle or
Due to the unbelievabely low real estate prices in the village, active
tired of the rain or snow can afford to fly off to Mexico for some
The future is
looking brighter for Stewart! Don't wait too long to move here
sounds like things are about to change in the undiscovered diamond
of BC's north! As Stewart grows into a vibrant economically
sustainable community with the steadiness of its mineral resources, its
ocean port, and its ever alluring natural beauty that is magnificent
enough to attract artists, real estate prices won't stay low for long!
I have just returned
from a delightful
late summer, early fall visit to Stewart and was pleased to be able
to see the changing colors of fall along the rivers. I saw
a grizzly feeding on fish in the Salmon River along side the many bald
I had some great late afternoons
painting along the river as
well as at the top of the world at the head of the Salmon Glacier. I
painting some of the autumn colors around
the village with the mountain
above the courthouse and I had a spectacular view of the Bear Glacier
in the sunshine on my drive out. I had a lovely time getting to know
more of the wonderful
people in Stewart and am planning on being back soon to paint in this
area soon. Please check back as I hope to have some more lovely
pictures of Stewart in the summer and fall as well as my latest
completed paintings of the area posted here.