Williams Lake is located in the heart of the interior of the Canadian Province of British Columbia approximately 550 kilometers north of Vancouver, BC and 240 kilometers south of Prince George, BC .
Traveling here by highway from north or south you use Highway 97, with Williams Lake clearly marked on most highway signs. Williams Lake is also accessible by air with several flights a day leaving and returning to Vancouver International Airport. BC Railway provides a marvelous passenger trip by rail through the scenic Fraser River Canyon from the coast to the interior where the original Stationhouse from the early 1900ís is your get-off point in Williams Lake. Williams Lake is also accessible by bus with regular routes from the north or the south daily to Williams Lake.
The community center of Williams Lake is very condensed and the rodeo grounds are in the very center of town so Guests and Tourists who are reasonably mobile would find that they could enjoy all the rodeo activities and events without the use of a motor vehicle. Many of the Hotels and Motels are an easy walk to the Stampede Grounds. As well there is modern campground and R.V. Park located right on the Williams Lake Stampede grounds complex.
Stampede Office: Located behind the Stampede Grandstand
Williams Lake Stampede Association
Williams Lake, BC
Canada V2G 2V3
Phone: OFFICE - (250) 392-6585 or 1-800-71-RODEO in BC
TICKET INFO. - 398-8388
Williams Lake & The Stampede
Williams Lake is located in the heart of British Columbiaís interior. It is the centre of a large service and trading area for a population of well over 50,000 people. It is the shopping and business centre for many in the ranching industry whose land and holdings spread in all directions from Williams Lake.
The stockyards in Williams Lake market the ranchers cattle from as far south as Clinton, as far north as Quesnel, as far west as Bella Coola and as far east as Horsefly. The town was just a spot on the map until the coming of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway in 1919. The coming of the railway coincided with the first real organized Williams Lake Stampede.
Today the rodeo is held on the same site as 1st Annual production in 1919 (the rodeo took a several year hiatus during the World Wars). In the early days the cowboys were mostly local boys and girls who wanted a place to show off their cowboy talents, today's rodeo is a big professional show with cowboys from all over Canada and the U.S. coming to compete. The original concept is maintained by a locals only competition called the Ranch Challenge where cowboys from area ranches compete against each other for the years bragging rights as "the best cowboys" .
The forest industry is another major source of commerce and we are proud to think "we live in Godís Country" because of the abundance of fresh water lakes, hills and mountains and big rivers. Outdoor recreation is widely varied with hunting, fishing, hiking, river rafting, aquatic sports and in the winter downhill and cross country skiing, snowmobiling and skating. As well there are many scenic day trips that can be taken to interesting places using Williams Lake as a base. Come see us soon and experience Cariboo Hospitality.