Points of Interest
The town of Likely is one of the few surviving old towns from the Cariboo Gold Rush Days. Originally named Quesnelle Dam, (read ‘Gold and Grand Dreams’ by Marie Elliot, for history of area) the town of Likely was renamed in 1923 in honour of the popular prospector John “Plato” Likely when the local post office was moved from Quesnel Forks. Current downtown businesses.
- general store and gas station – Valley General Store
- hotel with café and pub (room & board)- Likely Lodge
The current bridge is the third one to span the Quesnel River at this site. The remains of the Quesnelle Dam are still visible downriver from the Likely Bridge. The dam was completed in 1898 to mine the river bottom. The stop sign in the river was erected as a hoax in the 1970’s and today aids in measuring the water levels. See the kiosk on Goat Island near the bridge. The first bridge entered Goat Island where there were a store and post office, and a number of cabins before heading to Likely.
Old Quesnel Forks Road. Pavement to good gravel to a rustic gravel road that is very rough and hilly before the Bullion Pool so it’s a good idea to walk in once you get to the rustic gravel road unless you are travelling with in an ATV. It is a lovely walk or a bicycle ride from the Likely Bridge of about 5 km.
Likely Tourist Information and Cedar City Museum
The Likely Tourist Information and Cedar City Museum in Cedar Point Park and Campground. Turn right at the stop sign when leaving downtown Likely onto Keithley Creek road. Keep to the right onto Cedar Creek Road and continue along the lake until you reach the park. About a 5-minute drive from downtown Likely.
Bullion Pit Lookout
Turn in the road at the big yellow bulldozer blade, 5 minutes west of the Likely Bridge. The huge pit was formed by hydraulic mining between 1892 and 1942. Take a side trip a short way down the hill to the right past the workshop. Down the next road to the right, view the ditches and penstock where the water was directed down the hill to the monitors. You can still see the remains of the ditches that brought the water to the mine through the forest. There is a handicapped accessible toilet near the parking lot.
Located 10 minutes west from the Likely Bridge on Little Lake Road. It was established in the 1880s by Robert Borland as the last roadhouse before Quesnel Forks along the Gold Rush Trail. The property was purchased by Samuel Crabtree Prior in the 1890s. Prior was a butcher and from his store provided the miners with meat, eggs and staples such as coffee, flour, sugar, and beans. Later a Post Office and a garage were built. Today the Prior house and stables still stand at the corner of Little Lake Road and Prior Lake Road. This property is privately owned. A small beach at the far end of the lake across from a gravel pit is a warm and inviting spot for swimming on a hot day.
Morehead Lake is 15 to 20 minutes west from the Likely Bridge. Named after William Morehead, a miner and entrepreneur, this lake was dammed to provide water for the Bullion hydraulic mine. Beginning at Polley lake, a series of ditches were dug to Bootjack Lake, Little Lake, Prior Lake and on to the Bullion Mine.
Cedar Point Park Provincial Park “Class C”
This is a Camping and day use area with beach, swimming, boat launch, dock, playground, museum, bathrooms, sani-dump, baseball diamond and numerous mining displays. Be sure to see the 1906 steam shovel. This scenic park is nestled in a tall stand of ancient cedar trees next to Quesnel Lake. In the 1850s, Cedar Point Park was a rendezvous point for the Hudson’s Bay Company fur brigade.For a full list of amenities available visit Cedar Point Park or visit Cedar City Museum in the park
Kayaking and Canoeing
All the little lakes in the area and Quesnel Lake are ideal for a day or camping trip. Likely is known to be one of the best area’s for river Kayaking.
The Quesnel and Cariboo River are rated as world class rivers for the experienced kayaker. Paddlers come from great distances to enjoy some of the best paddling.
Main lake access in Likely is at Cedar Point Park but Likely also has two of public accesses on Cedar Creek Road.
Take a day trip on the lake or travel to one of the Recreations Sites on the lake by boat.
There are dozens of beaches along the shores of Quesnel Lake and at Cariboo Island which has two campsites. Travel up the junction and on to the wilderness areas of the North or East Arms of the lake for further adventures.
Quesnel Lake is reported to be the deepest fiord lake in the world. At the junction of the East and North Arms, Quesnel Lake is approximately 6 km across. The North Arm is 30 km, the East Arm is 51 km and the Main lake is approximately 95km long to the outflow of Quesnel River at Likely. The East Arm of the lake has minimal shore access especially in high water. Best days to visit the East Arm are warm sunny days with no wind. Close to the end of the East Arm you will see Little Niagara, a view you will always remember.
Quesnel Lake boasts a trophy fishing population of Rainbow Trout, Lake Trout, Dolly Varden, and Ling Cod. Be sure to study the fishing regulations for Quesnel Lake before you venture out.
Beaches – Swimming
Cedar Point Park has a sandy beach beside the boat dock. There is a day use area with picnic tables and swings. Lots of grassy areas for children to play. Outhouses are nearby. A children’s play area is also in the park. Abbott Creek has a campground and lovely shallow beach area for swimming. Winkley campground, Little Lake and Spanish Lake as well are popular swimming spots. Of course, if you have access to a boat there are dozens of beaches along the shores of Quesnel Lake. Travel to Cariboo Island which has two campsites with fantastic beaches. Travel up the junction and on to the wilderness areas of the North or East Arms of the lake for further adventures.
Bird Watching & Wildlife Viewing
Bird watching and wildlife viewing are a couple of favourite pastimes for wilderness loving people. Likely and area abounds with both. Respect and caution go hand in hand when viewing wildlife. The following are a few tips for enjoying your wilderness experience while keeping you and family safe and respecting the animals and birds space:
- Keep a safe distance from wildlife, especially predators
- Keep pets under control at all times
- DO NOT feed or unduly disturb wildlife
- Use binoculars or scope to get a closer view
- Leave young where you find them, a parent could be waiting and may become aggressive
- Stay alert while observing
- Take all garbage home with you
- Never disturb nesting sites