British Columbia’s Dutch Creek Hoodoos

April 24, 2019


Photographer: Ray Boren 
Summary Author: Ray Boren 

Rising dramatically above a curve in the road along Canada’s north-south Highway 93 and 95, British Columbia’s pine-fringed and buff-colored Dutch Creek hoodoos prompt many a cross-country traveler to stop and gawk, which is precisely what happened when this photograph was taken on June 11, 2018.

The crags and pinnacles of the Dutch Creek Hoodoos Conservation Area, near Fairmont Hot Springs, testify to millions of years of glaciation and deposition, for the formations trace back to the Pleistocene when Canada’s Rocky Mountains were blanketed by Ice Age glaciers. The ice carved and sliced into the region’s peaks and valleys, turning the resulting sand and gravel debris into glacial till. When the glaciers began to melt over 10,000 years ago, glacial till collected on lake bottoms in the Rocky Mountain Trench explains Nature Conservancy Canada.

Although many lakes remain — including nearby Columbia Lake, at the headwaters of the mighty Columbia River — they also dwindled over time, leaving behind bluffs, benchlands and cliffs, including the strata above Dutch Creek. Over the past several thousand years, rain, meltwater and wind weathered and eroded the soft till, forming chasms and spires reminiscent of other hoodoo landscapes, such as Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park and Turkey’s Cappadocia.

Photo Details: Camera: NIKON D3200; Exposure Time: 0.0040s (1/250); Aperture: ƒ/10.0; ISO equivalent: 400; Focal Length (35mm): 105.