Provincial Park is a popular stop along the Coquihalla Highway 5,
just east of the community of Hope, providing scenic viewing, walking
and hiking, picnicking, and fishing at the picturesque Coquihalla
Canyon and Coquihalla Gorge. The 159-hectare Coquihalla Canyon Park
showcases the Kettle Valley Railway grade that passes through the
In the early
1900s, the Canadian Pacific Railway decided a route was necessary
to link the Kootenay Region with the BC coast by rail. The railway
was built over three mountain ranges. In the Coquihalla Gorge, the
river had cut a 300-foot-deep channel through solid granite. A straight
line of 5 tunnels were built through it in 1914, now known as the
Othello Tunnels and regarded as a spectacular engineering feat.
Tunnel Trail through the Othello Tunnels is an easy 3.5-km round
trip. The trail features a flat gravel surface, and is part of the
Trans-Canada Trail, linking to the historic Hope-Nicola Cattle Trail.
There are spectacular viewing opportunities on the trail, through
the tunnels, and on the bridges. A flashlight is recommended, as
lighting is dim while walking through the tunnels. The Othello Tunnels
have become a favourite filming location for movie producers.
Pacific Railway engineer Andrew McCullough was an avid reader of
Shakespearean literature, and used characters such as Lear, Jessica,
Portia, Iago, Romeo, and Juliet to name stations of the Coquihalla
subdivision. The tunnels in the Coquihalla Canyon were near the
Othello station, hence the name Othello Tunnels.
include a few picnic tables and pit toilets located near the parking
lot and trailhead. Services are available from April 1 to October
31. The park is closed during the winter months due to unstable
conditions, falling rocks and ice.
Canyon Provincial Park is located just off the Coquihalla Highway
5, east of Hope.