The gold fever in British Columbia in the early 1860s brought men seeking an instant fortune. Some made their fortune. Others made and quickly squandered their riches. Some were disappointed and disappeared. Some realized the real potential was in the water and soil of the Okanagan Valley. They became the first settlers. Murals in the village depict the rich forestry and farming history of the area and the Lumby & District Museum has many displays detailing the community's colourful past.
The colourful past includes more than a few "counter culture" characters who were inspired by the area's landscape--60's activist Timothy Leary, Joey Kieghley a punk rock legend from the band DOA and Rene Dahinden the famous Sasquatch hunter all have spent time here, and even Rolling Stone Magazine discovered the area, branding it as growing "best pot in North America." The 60's are gone and the area is now home to gentlemen farmers and wealthy retirees, but a sizable artist and artisan community remains creating everything from landscapes, pottery, and glass sculpture to log homes. Be sure to explore the studios of the area.
Birders will enjoy great birdwatching in the Monashees. During the summer months Mabel Lake Provincial Park allows excellent viewing of Swainson's Thrush, Western Flycatchers, Osprey and Bald Eagles. Rawlings Lake is a nesting area for Ruddy Ducks, Black Terns and Sandhill Cranes, and many other species of birds can be seen along Creighton Valley Road (Thrush, Dippers and Loons), at Sugar Lake (Barred Owls, Bobolink and Mountain Bluebird), and in the amazing Monashee Provincial Park (Ptarmigan).
The vibrant and diverse community of Cherryville is located in the foothills of the Monashee Mountains, on Highway 6 in the North Okanagan, 14 miles (22 km) east of Lumby. Cherryville offers fascinating places and features to explore, and some of the most beautiful scenery in British Columbia. Cherryville (named after the wild Chokecherries which grow along the banks of Cherry Creek) was an old gold mining camp founded in the 1860s by prospectors from the California gold rush. Between 1863 and 1895, the original town that we now know as Cherryville was merely a small mining camp located within the canyon walls of Cherry Creek. It boasted a population of nearly 100 people, half of which were Chinese miners. The remains of Chinese workings and water canals are still visible, and historic tours of the Chinese diggings, old mining equipment and mining sites are available aboard the Monashee Stage Bus.
The Cherryville Artisans Spring Market is held on the May long weekend in a delightful marketplace setting, featuring artisan and garden vendors, artisan demonstrations, entertainment, and snacks. Also held on the same weekend in Cherryville is the B.C. Open Goldpanning Championships at the Gold Panner Cafe and Campgrounds - only five minutes down the highway. (Visitors can try their hand at panning for gold any time! Visit the Campground for a quick lesson and all the tools you'll need to start your own gold rush.) The annual Summer Festival in mid
August showcases the area's finest artisans and artists, with a special charm and atmosphere. Visitors will enjoy quality, handcrafted wares and fine arts, exhibitions, education and entertainment.
Nestled amongst valleys and rich farmland is the quaint and friendly little town of Lumby, known as the Gateway to the Monashee, the Mountains of Peace. Lumby is located on Highway 6, 22 miles (35 km) east of Vernon and 23 miles (36 km) west of Cherryville.
The view from Lumby is wonderful, as the picturesque Coldstream, Trinity and Creighton valleys all converge here. The awe-inspiring Monashee Mountain range and the varied landscape of streams and lakes beckons the avid outdoors enthusiast to go hiking, canoeing and fishing. In winter, this is a popular spot for cross-country skiing. The Lumby area offers visitors unlimited wilderness adventures by car, bike or trail into some of the most pristine countryside in the northern interior of British Columbia.
Although the village of Lumby was incorporated in 1956, its history dates back to 1893, when the forty-acre town site was surveyed. Prior to that, the small settlement of pioneer farmers, loggers and gold miners lived in White Valley, whose beginning commenced with the Cherry Creek gold strike in 1862.
Includes: Communities of Vernon, Coldstream, Lumby, Cherryville, Boutique Shopping, Hotels, Heritage Features, Agritourism Attractions, Wineries, Museums, Art Galleries and Performance Venues, Murals, Art Studios.