Quesnel, British Columbia

Quesnel /kwɪˈnɛl/ is a city located in the Cariboo Regional District of British Columbia, Canada. Located nearly evenly between the cities of Prince George and Williams Lake, it is on the main route to northern British Columbia and the Yukon. Quesnel is located at the confluence of the Fraser and Quesnel Rivers. Quesnel's metropolitan area has a population of 23,146 making it the largest urban center between Prince George and Kamloops.[2]

Quesnel
City of Quesnel
The Quesnel gold pan, claimed to be the largest in the world.

Flag

Motto(s): 
"Quesnel: It's in our nature"[1]
Quesnel
Location of Quesnel in British Columbia
Coordinates: 52°58′42.4″N 122°29′33.6″W
CountryCanada
ProvinceBritish Columbia
RegionNorth Cariboo
Regional districtCariboo Regional District
Founded1861
Incorporated as Village1928
Incorporated as Town1958
Incorporated as City1981
Government
  MayorBob Simpson
  Governing bodyQuesnel City Council
Area
  City35.38 km2 (13.66 sq mi)
  Metro
21,751.30 km2 (8,398.22 sq mi)
Elevation
474 m (1,555 ft)
Population
 (2016)
  City9,879
  Density279.2/km2 (723/sq mi)
  Metro
23,146
  Metro density1.1/km2 (3/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC−08:00 (PST)
Forward sortation area
V2J
Area code(s)250, 778, 236
Highways Hwy 97
Hwy 26
WaterwaysBowron Lake
Fraser River, Quesnel River
Websitehttp://www.quesnel.ca/

Quesnel is sister city to Shiraoi, Japan. Quesnel hosted the 2000 British Columbia Winter Games, an annual provincial amateur sports competition. To the east of Quesnel lie Wells, Barkerville, and Bowron Lake Provincial Park, a popular canoeing destination in the Cariboo Mountains.

History

Long before the arrival of prospectors during the Cariboo Gold Rush of 1862, the Southern Carrier (Dakelh) people lived off the land around Quesnel, occupying the area from the Bowron Lakes in the east to the upper Blackwater and Dean Rivers in the west. The Southern Carrier Nation were known among themselves as ‘Uda Ukelh’, meaning ‘people who travel by boat on water early in the morning’.[3] The name "Quesnel" is derived from Jules Maurice Quesnel, who accompanied Simon Fraser on his journey to the Pacific Ocean. Quesnel came to be called 'Quesnellemouth' to distinguish it from 'Quesnel Forks', 97 kilometres (60 mi) up river. In 1870 it had been shortened to Quesnelle and by 1900 it was spelled the way it is now. Quesnel is located along the gold mining trail known as the Cariboo Wagon Road and was the commercial centre of the Cariboo Gold Rush. It also marks one end of the Alexander MacKenzie Heritage Trail. Because of its location on the Fraser River it was also an important landing for sternwheelers during 1862 until 1886 and then from 1909 until 1921. The last sternwheeler on the upper Fraser was Quesnel's own namesake craft, and home town product, the Quesnel. Quesnel was incorporated in 1928.

Geography and climate

  • Location: 52°58′42.4″N 122°29′33.6″W
  • Elevation: 474 m (1,555 ft)
  • Average annual snowfall: 177.9 cm (70.0 in)
  • Average annual rainfall: 540.3 mm (21.3 in)
  • Frost free days: 179
  • Average winter temperature: −8.6 °C (16.5 °F)
  • Extreme minimum temperature: −46.7 °C (−52.1 °F)
  • Average summer temperature: 16.7 °C (62.1 °F)
  • Extreme maximum temperature: 40.6 °C (105.1 °F)
  • Time Zone: Pacific Time Zone

Climate

Considering it is located inland and around the 53rd parallel north Quesnel's humid continental climate[4] is mild by Canadian standards, being subject to marine airflows from the Pacific. Overnight lows are still cool even in summer, but daytime temperatures average above 24 °C (75 °F) in that season according to Environment Canada.

The highest temperature ever recorded in Quesnel was 40.6 °C (105 °F) on 17 July 1941.[5] The coldest temperature ever recorded was −46.7 °C (−52 °F) on 31 December 1927 and 17 January 1950.[6][7]

Climate data for Quesnel Airport, 1981–2010 normals, extremes 1892–present[lower-alpha 1]
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 16.1
(61.0)
18.9
(66.0)
22.3
(72.1)
31.1
(88.0)
36.5
(97.7)
36.7
(98.1)
40.6
(105.1)
38.3
(100.9)
36.1
(97.0)
28.3
(82.9)
24.4
(75.9)
18.3
(64.9)
40.6
(105.1)
Average high °C (°F) −2.9
(26.8)
1.3
(34.3)
7.3
(45.1)
13.5
(56.3)
18.4
(65.1)
21.7
(71.1)
24.1
(75.4)
24.1
(75.4)
18.5
(65.3)
10.8
(51.4)
2.1
(35.8)
−2.3
(27.9)
11.4
(52.5)
Daily mean °C (°F) −6.9
(19.6)
−3.6
(25.5)
1.3
(34.3)
6.4
(43.5)
11.1
(52.0)
14.7
(58.5)
16.8
(62.2)
16.4
(61.5)
11.5
(52.7)
5.5
(41.9)
−1.4
(29.5)
−5.9
(21.4)
5.5
(41.9)
Average low °C (°F) −10.8
(12.6)
−8.3
(17.1)
−4.7
(23.5)
−0.8
(30.6)
3.7
(38.7)
7.6
(45.7)
9.5
(49.1)
8.6
(47.5)
4.5
(40.1)
0.2
(32.4)
−5
(23)
−9.6
(14.7)
−0.4
(31.3)
Record low °C (°F) −46.7
(−52.1)
−45.6
(−50.1)
−38.9
(−38.0)
−21.7
(−7.1)
−11.1
(12.0)
−7.8
(18.0)
−1.1
(30.0)
−2.6
(27.3)
−11.1
(12.0)
−28.4
(−19.1)
−37.8
(−36.0)
−46.7
(−52.1)
−46.7
(−52.1)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 47.8
(1.88)
22.7
(0.89)
24.9
(0.98)
24.5
(0.96)
42.6
(1.68)
66.4
(2.61)
65.6
(2.58)
46.2
(1.82)
50.2
(1.98)
52.6
(2.07)
51.3
(2.02)
41.6
(1.64)
536.2
(21.11)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 10.4
(0.41)
6.7
(0.26)
12.7
(0.50)
21.2
(0.83)
41.4
(1.63)
66.4
(2.61)
65.6
(2.58)
46.2
(1.82)
50.2
(1.98)
46.3
(1.82)
22.3
(0.88)
4.9
(0.19)
394.3
(15.52)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 44.0
(17.3)
19.0
(7.5)
13.4
(5.3)
3.6
(1.4)
1.2
(0.5)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
6.7
(2.6)
31.5
(12.4)
42.8
(16.9)
162.1
(63.8)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 12.8 9.7 9.7 9.8 12.1 15.8 14.2 12.0 12.4 14.8 14.0 13.4 150.7
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 3.1 3.4 5.9 8.8 11.9 15.8 14.2 12.0 12.4 13.7 7.2 2.4 110.8
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 11.3 7.1 5.4 2.2 0.7 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.4 8.8 11.8 49.7
Average relative humidity (%) (at 15:00 LST) 74.3 62.0 46.9 37.9 40.0 44.8 44.4 42.9 49.4 59.0 72.6 75.7 54.2
Source: Environment Canada[7][8]

Demographics

Quesnel had a population of 9,879 people in the 2016 census, which was a decrease of 1.2% from the 2011 census count. The median household income in 2015 for Quesnel was $60,651, which is slightly below the British Columbia provincial average of $69,995.[9]

As of 2018, the population of Quesnel is estimated to be a little over 10,000 people living within the city, with roughly 13,000 people living outside the city limits but within the metro area.[10]

Canada 2016 CensusPopulation% of Total Population
Visible minority group
Source:[11]
South Asian5105.3%
Chinese1001%
Black200.2%
Filipino900.9%
Latin American200.2%
Arab00%
Southeast Asian00%
West Asian100.1%
Korean100.1%
Japanese600.6%
Other visible minority100.1%
Mixed visible minority100.1%
Total visible minority population8308.6%
Aboriginal group
Source:[12]
First Nations7557.8%
Métis7708%
Inuit450.5%
Total Aboriginal population1,61016.6%
White7,24574.8%
Total population9,685100%

Administration

Quesnel's city government consists of a seven-member council, that is one mayor and six Counsillors. The current city council, elected in 2018 for a four-year term, is composed of Mayor Bob Simpson and Councillors Scott Elliott, Tony Goulet, Ron Paull, Laurey-Anne Roodenburg, Martin Runge, and Mitch Vik.[13]

Education

Quesnel is part of School District 28, which contains several elementary schools, as well as a Junior and a Senior Secondary School (Quesnel Junior High School and Correlieu Senior Secondary School respectively). Also within the school district is McNaughton Centre which is an Alternate High school. For post secondary education, Quesnel has the College of New Caledonia and University of Northern British Columbia shared campus, which offers several programs, including four year nursing and social work degrees, foundation or apprenticeship-level trades certification, health sciences, human services, academic upgrading, or industry and continuing education courses. The Quesnel CNC Campus also offers students the chance to start arts or sciences degrees and then transfer to university.

Transportation

Quesnel is served by the Quesnel Airport, with several commercial flights daily to & from Vancouver, BC. The city has a local transit system provided by BC Transit.

Tourism

Quesnel's tourism industry is largely based on the city's access to nature, with hunting and guiding outfitters, fishing, hiking, canoeing.[3] The Rocky Mountaineer, a rail-tour train also travels through and stops overnight in Quesnel.

Quesnel's history as a gold-rush town is also reflected, as there are over 30 heritage sites around the city.[14] Quesnel is home to the world's largest gold pan,[15] measured at 5.5 m in diameter and weighing 1400 kg, although this is disputed by Nome, Alaska. The Gold pan currently resides at the junction of Hwy 97 and Hwy 26, visible when entering the city from the north, although there are plans to move it downtown near the museum in the future.

Sports

Quesnel is home to the Central Interior Hockey League's Quesnel Kangaroos Senior AA hockey team. The team plays at the West Fraser Centre in Quesnel. The city was formerly home to the Quesnel Millionaires, a BCHL team, before they relocated to Chilliwack as the Chilliwack Chiefs in 2011.

Quesnel also has soccer, airsoft and paintball, minor baseball, softball, lacrosse, ringette, roller derby, and football leagues. A Mountain biking skills park is located behind the Rec Center and West Quesnel has a skateboard park.

Notable people

Neighbourhoods and nearby communities

Nearby communities, not part of the City of Quesnel, include:

  • Moose Heights
  • Ten Mile Lake (also locally referred to as Parkland)
  • Barlow Creek
  • West Fraser / Narcosli
  • Cottonwood
  • Nazko
  • Bouchie Lake
  • Kersley

Sister cities

Notes

  1. Climate data was recorded at Quesnel from November 1892 to April 1970 and at Quesnel Airport from February 1946 to present.

References

  1. "Short commutes, affordable housing: Quesnel rebrands itself to attract disenchanted Lower Mainland residents". CBC News British Columbia. 17 January 2017. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
  2. "Population and dwelling counts, 2016 Census". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  3. "Explore Quesnel – It's in our nature". www.tourismquesnel.com. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  4. "Quesnel, British Columbia Climate Summary". Weatherbase. Retrieved 22 October 2015.
  5. "Daily Data Report for July 1941". Canadian Climate Data. Environment Canada. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  6. "Daily Data Report for December 1927". Canadian Climate Data. Environment Canada. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
  7. "Quesnel A". 1981–2010 Canadian Climate Normals. Environment Canada. Retrieved 20 December 2016.
  8. "Quesnel". Canadian Climate Data. Environment Canada. Retrieved 20 December 2016.
  9. "Census Profile, 2016: Quesnel". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  10. "BC Stats Has Released Population Numbers For The Cariboo". My Cariboo Now. Retrieved 13 December 2019.
  11. "Community Profiles from the 2011 Census, Statistics Canada – Census Subdivision". 2.statcan.gc.ca. 6 December 2010. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  12. "Aboriginal Peoples – Data table". 2.statcan.ca. 6 October 2010. Retrieved 13 April 2013.
  13. "Quesnel City Council". City of Quesnel. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  14. "Quesnel". www.hellobc.com/quesnel.aspx. Retrieved 30 October 2017.
  15. "BC's Biggest Attractions Are Often in the Smallest Places". BC Lodging & Campgrounds Association. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  16. "Arts and Recreation: Shiraoi House". City of Quesnel. Retrieved 25 April 2019.

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