Skookumchuck Hot Springs, located two hours north of Whistler along the edge of the huge Lillooet River. The name Skookumchuck means "strong water" in the language of the Chinook people of the Pacific Northwest. The name is associated with the hot springs because of the nearby First Nation community of Skatin, which was once called Skookumchuck. The Skookumchuck Hot Springs were also once known as St. Agnes Well during the days of the Fraser Canyon Gold Rush, but that name has fallen into disuse. They are also known locally by the Skatin name as the T'sek Hot Springs. See a short history of Skookumchuck Hot Springs here.
Just 20 minutes north of Whistler you pass Nairn Falls Provincial Park. This is a great pit-stop on your way to Skookumchuck. Whether you hike the short, 1.2 kilometre trail to Nairn Falls or just check out the river viewpoint near the parking lot. Back on the highway, Pemberton is just 5 minutes north of Nairn Falls. This little town is your last chance for gas, food, alcohol, ect, as you will shortly be leaving civilization and entering the wilderness around Lillooet Lake. As you drive through Pemberton, just before Mount Currie you will see North Arm Farm on your right. Keep your eye out about 5 minutes past the McDonalds/Petrocan intersection and you will see it. This is a great place to see and wander around the beautiful farm grounds, visit the interesting farm animals and marvel at the amazing view of Mount Currie. The farm is free to visit and open weekends in the winter and everyday the rest of the year. They have a fantastic cafe with all sorts of baked goods and lunch items as well as various farm fresh produce for sale as well. Also, a great place for your last coffee before entering the wilderness.
Another 10 minutes on the highway further and you come to the turnoff to the In-Shuck-Ch Forest Service Road(see directions below) and begin the long and beautiful drive along Lillooet Lake. There are several excellent Lillooet Lake and Lillooet River viewpoints to stop and see along the way. From the obvious and frequent viewpoints along the road to the numerous and inviting campsites along the way. These campsites are great places to stop and see Lillooet Lake, have a beer, swim, or all three. Depending on the season, Lillooet Lake can be emerald, though cloudy green or muddy brown. This is all dependent on the spring runoff and especially the silty brown, Lillooet River that flows into Lillooet Lake from Pemberton. Lillooet Lake flows into the rushing and crashing Lillooet River and Skookumchuck sits at the edge of this beautiful river. Once you see the end of the lake and start driving along the river you are getting close to the hot springs.
The Skookumchuck Hot Springs start in a pool which is far to hot to use so there are a network of tubes emanating from this pool to feed a ramshackle array of tubs. There are five tubs, which include one very large one under an A-frame which could hold 10 people and is beautifully comfortable. A smaller one under a half A-frame privacy screen which could hold 8 under the stars. And three more open tubs. Clothing, you will quickly discover, is optional. There are small change rooms and one outhouse a few metres away. Click here for a Short History of Skookumchuck Hot Springs.