Tumbler Ridge has everything to offer. Whether you want to kick back and relax, or explore the true beauty of this province – Tumbler Ridge won’t leave you disappointed.
Northern BC Moms decided to take on Tumbler Ridge in 48 hours with our kids aged six months to three years old.
> > Bijoux Falls
Rest Stop off Highway 97 | no hike required
Okay, its not actually in Tumbler Ridge. But if you have kids, you know for sure you are going to need a pit stop. Why not take advantage of the picnic tables at the base of the beautiful Bijoux Falls and stop for snacks, diaper changes, and to burn off some stir-crazy from the first leg of the trip?
The pull off is right on Highway 97 and about two hours from Prince George. While there we got to bird watch for BC’s bird, the Stellar’s Jay, and take some beautiful photos of the falls. The kids got to walk the dogs, run around, climb around the base of the falls (with adult’s close by), and eat some food.
Pro: Fence surround falls so the kids can run with little risk.
> > Tumbler Ridge Tourism Centre
If you are going to go to a new town – go to the tourism centre. You’ll get to chat up whoever is working, pick their brain on the spots you plan to see, and maybe learn about some hidden gem from a local of the place you’re visiting.
> > Flatbed Creek & Campground
Okay, time to get set up for our stay. We chose this campground because I personally believe it screams perfection if you are a young family. If you are going to go to this campground, let me say right now – site 15 and 36.
These campsites act as a double, without actually being one. Plus, there is a park RIGHT there – so close that you can be in your campsite while the kids play in the park. The bathrooms (with flushable toilets) are also a stones throw away and beside those is the tap for dish water, dog water, etc. Let’s just say we felt pretty genius to have happened upon these sites.
Just a short walk from the camp ground is a swimming hole, perfect for an evening dip after dinner, or if you’re feeling extra adventurous, you can walk another 3.5 kms to find Flat Bed Falls (more on that below).
> > Wolverine River Hike & Dinosaur Trackway
1.5 km round trip | 30 minutes
Back down Highway 29 towards Prince George, there is a little pull off to the side of the road by the railway tracks. We decided this would be a great way to start the morning, get everyone moving, see the Wolverine River and find some dinosaur tracks.
Con: This is a steep incline descending to the trackway. If you have tots that are not expert little hikers, we recommend baby-wearing.
Pro: It’s a bum workout (double bum work out if you baby wear).
Once you are down there though, the kids can play detective and find the tracks, you can take in the view of the beautiful river, and of course, everyone can eat snacks. Always with the snacks.
> > Kinuseo Falls
1 km round trip | 30 minutes
Need a car nap yet? Good. Us too. Located in Monkman Provincial Park, approximately one hour’s drive from Tumbler Ridge, Kinuseo Falls are known for being taller than Niagara Falls.
I am going to say right off the go that this isn’t a drive for those who don’t like to drive down windy, pot-holey, dusty, dirt roads (or don’t have vehicles fit to go down windy, pot-holey, dusty, dirt roads). But once you get there, you’ll find picnic tables for your pre-packed lunch (again with the food), an outhouse, and a very short walk (about 500 m) to the top viewpoint of the falls.
FYI: Kineseo Falls during the spring is breathtakingly powerful. Con: We went in August.
We recommend you take it a step further than we did and treat the whole family to a magical and unforgettable Wild River Adventure Tour where you can all appreciate Tumbler Ridge area from a jet boat.
> > Quality Hiking Trail & Falls
2.5 km round trip | 1.5 hours
After a series of switchbacks that gradually descend to the creek, you’ll find Quality Falls. This was by far my favourite adventure within our forty-eight-hour adventure. Here’s why:
- The drive to the falls was short and sweet.
- The trail was easy enough that toddlers did not have to be carried but challenging enough for adults to enjoy (even at toddler-pace).
- The falls, while only 7m tall, are viewable from the bottom (there is even a spot to swim at the base of the falls).
- There are dinosaur tracks here too!
- The forest is really a small slice of heaven.
Con: The sandstone is pretty slippery so be mindful when the little bare feet venture off solo.
> > Dinosaur Discovery Gallery
I am going to start out by saying: the museum is closed on Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s so if you want to see the Museum, don’t be like us and go to Tumbler Ridge on a Tuesday and Wednesday.
…But we were a tiny bit desperate (if for no other reason to escape the smokey air of summer 2018), so we did decide to squeeze in the Dinosaur Gallery on the Thursday morning before we hit the road. We got the full museum experience:
Learned a bit about pre-historic Peace Region. Check.
Checked out the re-creation of a 100 million-year-old dinosaur track environment. Check.
Took in the numerous paleontological exhibits. Check.
The things we would have done if we had 24 more…
> Community Centre
Do the littles need a break from the outdoors? The Community Centre is the perfect way to escape indoors for a few with enough recreational activities to suit the whole family!
- Aquatic Centre
- Skating Arena
- Curling Rink
- Rock Climbing Wall (located in Youth Centre)
- Public Library
Or maybe you need a break? Go and check out the Rock Pit Gym, TR’s fully equipped gym.
> Flat Bed Falls
1 km round trip | 30-60 minutes
Flat Bed Falls is the most popular stop in Tumbler Ridge and we didn’t do it. (Insert sad face here). It honestly isn’t because we didn’t want to – it was right near the top of the list. It’s more because it was really smokey, our kids make the rules, we only had 48 hours, and while we’d like to think we are extra-super-human 92 percent of the time …sadly we can’t be everywhere, doing all the things, always.
We did however have this adventure scheduled for our last day. We figured it would be a great way to finish off our visit to Tumbler Ridge and would wear out the kids just enough to fifty percent enjoy another long car ride. Flat Bed Falls is great for all ages. The bottom of the waterfall gives the advanced swimmers a spot to swim but just upstream from the falls you will find shallower slow moving pools great for the less skilled swimmers in the bunch. Don’t forget the food and make the stop at the covered picnic area – perfect for snack time in the shade – right before you hit the falls.
As for us ..there is always next time!
> Bullmoose Marshes
Two Trail Systems | 500m – 1.3 km | time varies
And finally, our intended actual last stop – to help wear the kids out that other fifty percent. Situated beside Hwy 29 about 24 km from Tumbler Ridge, Bullmoose Marshes is a two-trail system that is perfect for toddler-paced walks and for those with limited mobility.
Don’t forget to count all the birds you see! Bullmoose Marshes is known for the 74 bird species that habitat there.
Did I miss a family-friendly must-see in Tumbler Ridge, BC?
Don’t forget to let me know in the comments below! We need to start our list of must-see’s for next year. If you’re a Tumbler Ridge mom and you want share your story on Northern BC Moms, we want to learn more about your experience of motherhood and raising kids in the Peace Region.