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 Home > Travel BC > BC Cities and Towns >  Yellowhead Hwy > Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

Gitanyow (Kitwancool)
Kitwancool, known since May 1994, by the traditional name of Gitanyow, is located 15 km (9.4 miles) north of Gitwangak (Kitwanga) and 133 km (83 miles) south of Meziadin Junction on Hwy 37.

Kitwanga River
Gitanyow (Kitwancool) is a small village with a population around 450 inhabitants that sits alongside of the Kitwanga River a few kilometres (miles) from the highway. The river has long served the First Nation for thousands of years, both spiritually and as a source of food, encompassing a number of fish including species of migrating salmon, various types of trout and as a hunting ground for moose and deer.

Historic Village and Interpretive Centre
Situated in Gitanyow (Kitwancool) is the historic village, home to some of the oldest-known and largest collection of totem poles in British Columbia. Highlighted by famous Canadian painter, Emily Carr, in 1928, the totem poles at Gitanyow Historic Village and Interpretive Centre bring you close and personally into First Nation heritage and folklore.

Totem Poles
Although many of the original totem poles have been taken from Gitanyow (Kitwancool) and preserved at the Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria and replaced with replicas, many have stayed in place including the "Hole in the Ice" totem, erected circa 1850. Marvel at the craftsmanship and feel the aboriginal spirit and history coming from the many artifacts that are presented at the centre including artwork, carving sheds and an ancient graveyard.

Gitanyow Gas Bar
If you require services when visiting Gitanyow (Kitwancool), the Gitanyow Gas Bar is conveniently located right near to the totem poles. Staying open from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., the Gitanyow Gas Bar offers gas, diesel, tax exemption for fuel and cigarettes, and has excellent free parking for RV's, pay phone, rest rooms, slushies, soft ice cream and a convenience store. The facility is only a two-minute drive off Hwy 37.

Kitwanga (Gitwangak) Services
There is very little else besides the community hall in Gitanyow (Kitwancool). Most services besides convenience items found at the Gitanyow Gas Bar can be purchased in Kitwanga (Gitwangak). Here you can find the Kitwanga Coffee Cup, Terry's Tax & Bookkeeping, Dollops Kitwanga Auto Service for vehicle repairs, the Kitwanga General Store featuring a Home Hardware and a large Petro-Canada with a café at the junction of Hwy 37 and Hwy 16.

Cassiar RV & Campground
For people who want to stay near Gitanyow (Kitwancool), the only place is also south at Kitwanga (Gitwangak) in the Cassiar RV & Campground. The RV campground is situated next to the Kitwanga River and is located on Bacalow Road 4 km (2.5 miles) from Hwy 37. Here you can find a very clean facility complete with sani-dump and nearby hiking trails. There is also the rustic but clean camping facility at the Kitwanga Centennial Park just across the street from Dollops Kitwanga Auto Service.

Kitwanga Fort
Also located in Kitwanga is the Kitwanga Fort a National Historic Site of Canada. The Kitwanga Fort is associated to the aboriginal warrior Nekt in the 18th century. Nekt strategically located the fort on Ta'awdzep or Battle Hill to have a vantage point over the adjacent Kitwankul Trail and the Kitwanga River Valley.

Kitwanga River Fishing
If you enjoy fishing the Kitwanga River offers some excellent opportunities. Please check for local restrictions and licensing

Information on Gitanyow

 

 

click map for larger image
click map for larger image

 

"Hole in the Ice" Totem
"Hole in the Ice" Totem

 

Gitanyow Gas Bar
Gitanyow Gas Bar

 

Totem Poles - Gitanyow (Kitwancool)
Totem Poles - Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

 

Gitanyow (Kitwancool)
Gitanyow (Kitwancool)

 

Kitwanga River at Gitanyow
Kitwanga River at Gitanyow

 
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