Rural Grand Forks encompasses the mountains and wide open valleys from the Canada/US border, north to Granby Provincial Park, east of Gladstone Provincial Park and west to Eholt Summit.
Just east of Greenwood the Kettle Valley Rail Trail crosses Hwy 3 at Eholt, one of the many ghost towns of the mining times. If you are looking
for an easy ride for an afternoon along quiet trails, have a friend drop you off with your bike at Eholt and virtually glide down a gentle grade to the Granby River valley in Grand Forks. The surrounding countryside of rural Grand Forks encourages one to stop and admire the tranquil beauty.
A tributary of the Kettle River, the Granby River runs about 105km down from the Monashee Range west of Faquier and joins the Kettle inGrand Forks.
One frequently meets someone who just moved here, talking about how they have the perfect view and you start to realize that no matter where you are here, you have all that and more.
History has left it’s mark on the Granby River valley with old town sites like Niagra Townsite, that supplied men and all the extras to keep the Granby smelter going.
A popular place to visit and try a local swimming hole is the Granby Dam site, with remnants left over of the support towers for the bridge and dam. The dam originally supplied power to Grand Forks and the smelter but, in 1948, was in such disrepair that in May of that year, an attempt was made to blow a log jam behind the dam, which broke under the weight of the water and a 5’ wall of water rushed into Grand Forks, flooding it. The water was up to 8’ deep and about 50 houses were flooded.
For the more adventerous, the Granby is home to Granby Provincial Park with opportunities for real wilderness camping, kyaking, cliff climbing and more. In the winter the Granby provides room to snow shoe, cross country ski or snowmobile for hours without seeing anyone.
Mining and railroads weren’t the only ingredients in the local history. In 1908 many of the Doukhobors migrated to the Grand Forks area and established their culture. Their success at farming the area acreated a demand for their seed production all over Canada, US, Great Britain, South America and other parts of Europe. The red brick buildings are evidence of their earlier settlement, but to find out more about the local history, including the Doukhobors, stop into the Boundary Museum and Interpretive Centre or visit the flour mill and if you are lucky, watch it happen.
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