The tale of the Sasquatch has been passed down for generations by the Sts’ailes First Nations people of Harrison Lake and Harrison River. Often described as a half-man, half-ape type creature, the Sts’ailes believe the Sasquatch is a spiritual being that can vanish into the spirit realm at will.
The first time I heard of the creature, I was maybe five years old, and my grandmother was watching Ripley’s Believe It or Not. That’s when I saw for the first time the infamous 1967 video of the Sasquatch. Fast forward to 2020, when my family and I decided to head to Harrison Hot Springs for a few days – and look for the elusive being ourselves.
Harrison Hot Springs is only a ninety-minute drive away from Vancouver. Aside from being one of the most picturesque towns in BC, it has a strong focus on conservation and Eco-friendliness. Keeping that in mind, we drove the new Honda Clarity – a plug-in hybrid with fast charging times.
Our first stop was to educate ourselves, so we checked out the new Sasquatch Museum inside the Visitor Centre, located on 499 Hot Springs Road. There you will find an array of artifacts including videos, footprint casts, and other curiosities. This is a must-visit for any Sasquatch fan.
Of course, searching for Sasquatch is a time-consuming affair. We stayed and recharged at The Harrison Beach Hotel. We love staying here, aside from the family vibe, the proximity to the lake, and the affordability; we really like the amenities such as the pool, free Wi-Fi, central AC, comfy beds and fully-equipped kitchenettes.
After we took some time to relax, we were back on the Sasquatch trail. This fun little scavenger hunt of sorts takes you around Harrison Hot Springs and the best it has to offer. If you’re in need of some tasty treats around the way, make sure to pick up a Sasquatch foot at Rocky Mountain Chocolates.
We decided to take a break from our hunt to explore the lake at the heart of Harrison – and what better wa to explore than a boat trip from Shoreline Tours. Their two-hour cruise option takes you along the lake’s west side, floating past the green waters of Echo Bay, the towering rock formations of Echo Island, and the cold cascades of Rainbow Falls.
It is so peaceful out here in the water, and there were plenty of snacks available to enjoy on board. Our captain was great with Dylan, and my son was thrilled to be shown the bridge and even get a quick nautical lesson :)
The home of the Harrison Sasquatch and location of some sightings are the caves of Mystery Valley on the West Side of Harrison Lake. Local lore says the Sasquatch hold a reunion every four years, beginning on the night of the full moon in July. For four nights in succession as the Sasquatch meet, signal fires are kept burning. 1940 is the last year fires were seen burning however reported sightings in the area have been as recent as 2009.
Regardless if you’re a believer or not, (some say that the Sasquatch will only be seen if he wants you to see him) – a visit to Harrison Hot Springs is a fun family thing to do.