It’s described in visitors’ posts on TripAdvisor and elsewhere as one of the most spectacular waterfalls in North America. At 197 feet (60 metres), it’s slightly higher than Niagara Falls (although with a lower volume of water flowing through).

Located a 75-minute drive south of Dawson Creek, Kinuseo Falls are just south of the Tumbler Ridge, British Columbia community.

They’re awe-inspiring in their power and set within a rugged environment they’ve helped to carve (waterfalls like this move backwards as their erosive force re-shapes the riverbed).

Here on the beautiful Murray River, in Monkman Provincial Park, these falls have attracted visitors – especially hikers and backpackers — for many years.

According to the Dawson Creek Tourism website, several new trails have recently been opened, providing access to a paradise of scenery few had seen before:

Along the Heritage Highway to Tumbler Ridge from Dawson Creek, the Tepee Falls Trail and Murray Canyon Overlook Trail are both well marked for visitors. Return distance for each is approximately six kilometres. Close to town, the Flatbed Pools Trail and Flatbed Falls Trail offer great summer swimming holes. Nearby, an important dinosaur track way site is open to guided tours only…

The Core Lodge Road leads into spectacular sub-alpine and alpine zones and fantastic scenery. Here hikers can choose between the Babcock Falls Trail with a recommended swim in the pool; the Boulder Gardens Hiking Route with a unique jumble of giant rocks and crevices; the Roman Mountain Trail which follows part of the route of the famous Emperor’s Challenge mountain half-marathon, and the Quintette Mountain Trail. This last trail, a round trip of just over two kilometres, enables visitors to drive to the tree line, then amble up a rocky ridge to the summit amidst carpets of summer wildflowers. More ambitious hikers may wish to challenge themselves with the Five-peak Circuit; twenty-seven kilometres in one day! – Dawsoncreektourism.com

Not everyone, of course, is up for the challenge of an arduous wilderness scramble to gain access to this pristine wilderness area.

For those who prefer jetboats in the backcountry, simply drop by the Tumbler Ridge Visitor Centre (call 250 242 3123) to find out the schedules. Please note, you’re not allowed to bring your own jetboat! Instead, you’ll book yourselves onto a wild ride up the river to the mists below the falls.

Or, if you’d prefer, set aside some of your travel budget to swoop down over the top of the falls in a helicopter, a flight-seeing trip you won’t soon forget. Again, ask about the scenic helicopter rides at the Tumbler Ridge Visitor Centre.

There’s much more:

  • At the Kinuseo Falls: 150 metre disabled-accessible trail to Viewpoint Platform.
  • Near the Kinuseo Falls: The 22-site campground nearby has five pull-throughs, it’s open from May to September, and there’s a hiking trail to the falls. You can also drive to the falls.
  • In the area: The Stone Corral Interpretive Hiking Trail runs four kilometres through an area of lakes, cliffs, caves and outstanding scenery.
  • In the area: The 24 km hike to Monkman Lake includes a stop at The Cascades, an picturesque area with 10 waterfalls in Monkman Creek.

How to get there

Driving distance from Tumbler Ridge: 65 km (17 km paved).

Kinuseo Falls is 65 kilometres south of Tumbler Ridge. Take the Heritage Highway (Boundary Road) for 14 km southeast from Tumbler Ridge, then turn right. The road is paved for the first 3 km, then gravel for 48 km. After that, the falls are reached by various trails from parking and picnic tables at the end of a final, 1 km stretch of road.