Rainbow Canyon

British Columbia. Canyon: Fraser River drainage
Moose River, SE of Moose Lake
52°55’00” N 118°48’00” W — Map 83D/15 — GoogleGeoHack
Earliest known reference to this name is 1910 (Talbot).
Name officially adopted in 1951. Official in BCCanada
Rainbow Canyon. 
Photo: Byron Harmon, 1911

Rainbow Canyon.
Photo: Byron Harmon, 1911
Canadian Alpine Journal 1912

Frederick Talbot, who crossed the Yellowhead Pass in 1910, wrote, “There was a narrow, deep gulch in the Rainbow Mountains through which the Moose River flowed.”

Arthur Oliver Wheeler, who made an expedition to Mount Robson in 1911, wrote:

”Moose River emerges from a canyon directly beside the railway. It is very fine and will be a most attractive feature to the travelling public. The canyon is not more than two hundred yards in length and about 150 feet deep. There are two falls near the head, of which the upper drops 50 feet and the lower 20 feet. Here the grandeur and awe of the spectacle culminates; the gorge is at its wildest, the sheer rock walls at their steepest; you are between the two falls; flying mist and spray fill the available space and eddy and circle continuously. On sunny days baby rainbows play hide and seek. I counted, at one and the same time, half a dozen at various points of view. The name Rainbow Falls and Canyon is suggested as attractive and appropriate; the more so that the mountain group, of which Robson is the dominating mass, is known as the Rainbow Mountains. The canyon is an exceptionally fine study of the action and effect of a powerful glacial torrent.”

References:

  • Talbot, Frederick Arthur Ambrose [1880–1924]. The new garden of Canada. By pack-horse and canoe through undeveloped new British Columbia. London: Cassell, 1911. Internet Archive
  • Wheeler, Arthur Oliver [1860-1945 ]. “The Alpine Club of Canada’s expedition to Jasper Park, Yellowhead Pass and Mount Robson region, 1911.” Canadian Alpine Journal, Vol. 4 (1912):9-80. Alpine Club of Canada
  • Wheeler, Arthur Oliver [1860-1945]. “Topographical Map Showing Mount Robson and Mountains of the Continental Divide North of Yellowhead Pass to accompany the Report of the Alpine Club of Canada’s Expedition 1911. From Photographic Surveys by Arthur O. Wheeler; A.C.C. Director.” Canadian Alpine Journal, Vol. 4 (1912):8-81. Victoria Library, University of Toronto

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