Thursday, September 17, 2020

Thompson Canyon ~ Thompson River Rapids

This year has brought changes that affect us all.  For us, we spend most of our time at home and very little social time other than a ‘socially distant’ visit with family.  In spite of that, we try to be as ‘normal’ as possible. We’ve decided to travel to Vancouver Island with our RV and enjoy the company of family and friends…. ‘socially distant’, of course. 

Waterfall at Spences Bridge

We chose the canyon to make our way down and back. We’ve often travelled this route but at different times of the year and always enjoy the variety of beautiful scenery we see, between semi-arid in Kamloops to mountainous terrain in the Fraser Canyon.

Thompson River

We leave Kamloops travelling west on the TCH to Cache Creek then follow south and the Thompson Canyon begins.  Rarely is the ‘canyon’ referred to by this name but it is that until the Thompson meets the Fraser River where it then becomes the Fraser Canyon.

Railways border the river

The highway follows the winding river which is lined by the Canadian Pacific Railway on one side and the Canadian National Railway on the other.  We also spot people enjoying a quiet location for a sunny afternoon on the river.

Slides line the railroad

There is a 50 million year history in this area and landslides have not been uncommon.  There have been eight major slides between 1880 and 1982 causing much damage.  Signs of them can still be seen on our drive. 

Years of erosion on the hillside

The Thompson River was once considered a premier river for steelhead fishing but due to the severe decrease in numbers of fish now coming through, fishing is now a ‘catch and release’ only during very strict periods in order to protect the wild stock that are remaining.


We did see a raft on this trip but not while it was in the rapids, much to my disappointment.  I would never want to ride those rapids but for those who do, the “Jaws of Death” and the “Frog” look like fun from my point of view.

Frog Rapids

As many times as we've driven by this part of the Thompson River, I've never tired of it and have taken photos every time!  Never had I noticed the 'Frog' but now that I know it by name, I surely will recognize him.

Great views of the rapids

White water rafting has become very popular on the rapids of the Thompson River since they began in 1970 at Spences Bridge.  They are rated Class 5 on the International Scale of River Difficulty.  Now that the river level is low, the rapids do not look as intimidating as they do in the springtime. 

Once we reach Lytton, the Fraser River welcomes its’ main tributary, the Thompson River and the valley now becomes the Fraser Valley. 


Related Posts with Thumbnails