A natural fishing paradise, the historic Loon Lake valley is a hidden treasure and part of the “Land of Hidden Waters.” The lake itself supports a superb rainbow trout fishery, providing plenty of action and as such, is a popular lake for young and wise alike. Fly fishing enthusiasts will rejoice at the plentiful freshwater shrimp, dragonfly nymphs and chironomids in the habitat; while trollers and casters have no problem enjoying this natural, un-stocked fishery. This deep, narrow 14 km (9 mi) long lake steadily produces quality fish through the spring, summer and fall. Loon Lake offers an outdoor experience for the entire family, nestled between the Bonaparte Plateau and Arrowstone hills; this steep valley is home to many resorts, ranches and summer residences. The hills offer hiking, walking and bird watching in a coniferous forest mixed with small stands of deciduous growth and besides fishing, this clear lake is excellent for canoeing and kayaking. Indigenous people of the region have fished, hunted and gathered along the valley lake shores for generations. Fur traders descended upon the area forging trade routes for the Hudson’s Bay Company across the Bonaparte Plateau and into surrounding rich watersheds, which was followed closely by the gold rush. At the junction of Hwy 97, the Gold Rush Trail, and Loon Lake Road you will see a heritage barn and blacksmith shop; this was a stop for the BX express during the gold rush as travellers made their way from Ashcroft up the Cariboo Waggon road to strike it rich. The valley also has a rich ranching history where many of the area’s pioneer families settled to raise livestock, and their children. With tourism operators open year-round, winter is an excellent time to visit for pristine vistas, snowshoeing, ice fishing and tranquillity. The community of full-time residents host a number of winter events with visitors welcome to attend, ask your resort what may be happening during the dates of your visit.