Elkford, BC – Wild at Heart
Elkford is a picturesque Rocky Mountain town with a population of nearly 3,000. One of the highest elevated communities in Canada, Elkford sits at an elevation of 1,300m/4,265ft. It is a district municipality in the southeast region of BC and is nestled in the Kootenay Rockies. It is 32 km north of the junction at Sparwood, on provincial Highway 43.
People come here for the proximity to raw wilderness, for the wildlife and for the rugged beauty of the Canadian Rockies. Founded in 1970, the community owes its existence to coal mining, which had been practiced in the Elk Valley since the late 1800s.
A Young Community
The people that make their home here are primarily mineworkers and their families, although some homes in the community have been sold as vacation properties. Elkford residents are a younger than average demographic. There are two public schools Rocky Mountain Elementary School and Elkford Secondary School with a combined student population of 400 in January 2006.
There are 5 open-pit coal mines within an hour’s drive of Elkford: Fording River Operations (FRO), Greenhills Operations (GHO), Line Creek Operations (LCO), Elkview Operations (EVO) and Coal Mountain Operations (CMO). All mines belong to Teck Resources. Elkford was created, due to mining activity, in the early 1970s. Many Elkford residents work for the mines or as contractors; other residents work in service industries directly related to the mines. Learn the true meaning of “economy of scale” by taking a mine tour. Teck’s open pit operations are located in the mountains north and east of Elkford.
Things to Do in Elkford
There are year round activities to take part in around Elkford.
- With many kilometers of horse riding, hiking, snowmobiling, atv and cross country ski trails there is something for everyone.For an Elkford Trails Map please click on the following link. elkfordtrailsmap.pdf
- Enjoy Wapiti Ski Hill, run by Elkford resident volunteers. There are currently 14 complete runs offering 1000 vertical feet of elevation change, enough variety to keep the whole family entertained for the day.
- Elkford Aquatic Centre has a competition-size pool, hot tub and sauna.
- Elkford Recreation Center-houses an ice arena and 3 sheets of curling ice.
- Mountain Meadows nine-hole golf course which was built on a natural elk grazing meadow in 1976. Over time it has been transformed into one of the most golfer-friendly courses in the Kootenays.
- World class fishing in the Elk River
- Provincial Parks – North of Elkford, a small gravel road heads out into the wilderness beyond the Greenhills and Fording River Mines, to two of British Columbia’s most spectacular provincial parks: Elk Lakes and Height of the Rockies
- Numerous clubs and associations for both adults and kids. For a full list please click on following link. elkford.ca/clubs & associations
Additional information about Elkford can be viewed at the following links
Photo: Elk Lakes Provincial Park