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"The Hill" from the Bella Coola Valley to Heckman Pass and the Chilcotin Plateau above.

By Diana Mohrsen in British Columbia 164 views 5th Jun, 2024 Video Duration: N/A   Heckman Pass, Cariboo, BC V0L 1C0, Canada

What goes down must come up! Recently I drove BC Highway 20 west from Williams Lake and ended up in Bella Coola on the coast. At one point the paved road disappears and instead you have a gravel road. There is a section of this gravel road that drops over 1,600 metres from the Chilcotin Plateau to the Bella Coola Valley. For someone afraid of heights, this hill was a challenge. There are drop offs that take your breath away. No guard rails! None! There are switchbacks and hairpin turns. In several places the road is only one lane wide with no way of seeing around the corner. If you meet someone, then someone will have to back up. 

I knew about The Hill before I did the drive. I thought I was mentally prepared. It was with a great relief that I reached the Bella Coola Valley in one piece. But then I had to drive back up The Hill to return home. This part was more difficult because now I really knew how steep the drop offs were. It seemed insane to drive mere feet from the cliff edge with no guard rails. 

This video was taken part way up The Hill. I had to do some serious self encouraging to do the return drive. At this part of the road, there was actually some extra space so I could park, exhale, and try to relax before continuing on. 


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