100 Mile House's population: 1,980
100 Mile House is a district municipality located in the South Cariboo region of British Columbia. It is also located halfway between Vancouver and Prince George along Highway #97.
The community was previously known as Bridge Creek House, it was named after a small creek streaming through the north end of town. Its origins of a small Canadian town date back through the 1860s during the Cariboo Gold Rush. A group of ramshackle buildings were used as stopover and resting points for miners on their way towards other places, such as Barkerville and Quesnel Forks, in their search for gold. Its current name comes from the reference of the fact that a roadhouse was built at the 100 mile mark of the Old Cariboo Road from Lillooet.
At this time, the road was so busy that 100,000 people traveled this route, so much so, a stagecoach and line was established. The modern origins of this town came in the late-1930s when Martin Cecil came from England to manage an estate owned by his father, William Cecil, the 5th Marquis of Exeter.
During this time, 100 Mile House had a population of 12 and only consisted of a roadhouse, power plant, post office and a store. A mural erected in August of 2011, on the south side of Coach House Square honors him, it has been said that the Cecil Family is the founding family of 100 Mile House.
For being the largest incorporated community along Highway #97 between Williams Lake and Kamloops, it has a rather sizable amount of businesses in its downtown area and along the highway. In downtown, you will find, a coffee shop,2 pharmacies, electronics retailer, a movie rental store, 3 banks, credit union, 2 grocery stores, 2 shopping centers, and a post office among others. Most of these are scattered from Birth Avenue at the north end, to Horse Lake Road at the south.
Furthermore, the downtown area is also home to the 100 Mile House Community Hall, famous as a landmark, because of its orange colored roof.
The highway part of town, on the other hand, has grown in recent years especially since the late 1980s to the early 1990s, when it was mostly ranch land. Today it ishome to numerous businesses that interest the tourist. This includes gas stations,
restaurants, pub, motels, auto dealerships, and a 9-hole golf course.
The tourism information center located along the highway, near the center of town is home to the world’s largest cross-country skis, in dedication to the numerous winter activities and the many cross-country ski trails 100 Mile House has to offer.
As with many towns located within British Columbia’s Fraser Plateau, 100 Mile House regularly experiences a dry and warm summer and a cold, mild and sometimes wet winter. The summers average a temperature of 25 degrees Celsius
and average about 294 millimeters of precipitation a year. The winters are a different story depending on the year and circumstance (El Nino, La Nina etc.), the thermometer can sometimes dip below the -30 degrees Celsius mark with icy, wind chill conditions.
100 Mile House receives more precipitation year-round than its southern neighbor counterparts such as Cache Creek and Lillooet. This is due to its location in a valley, high elevation (about 930 meters, 3,051 feet above sea level) and that unlike
the above-mentioned locations south, there are no tall mountains to produce a rainshadow effect to protect 100 Mile House from the effects of severe weather. Thecommunity normally receives an average of 250 centimeters of precipitation during
the winter months. In 2010 during the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver and Whistler on top of a mild El Nino winter, the temperature here averaged about +5 degrees Celsius during the daylight hours.
The 100 Mile House Wranglers, a Junior "B" ice hockey team and member of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL), play 26 of their 52 regular season games at the South Cariboo Recreation Centre.
This team began play in 2001 in Summerland as the Summerland Sting, however due to poor attendance and lackluster performance and results, they then relocated to Penticton prior to the 2009-10 season as the Penticton Lakers. However like in Summerland, poor attendance, poor performance, and strong competition from the British Columbia Hockey League's Penticton Vees, they then relocated to their current home in 100 Mile House in 2013.
During the 2015-16 KIJHL season, this team won the championship in that league, beating the Kimberley Dynamiters 4 games to 1 in the final series. In an ironic twist to the prior paragraph, it was Summerland's current KIJHL team, the
Summerland Steam who the 100 Mile House Wranglers beat for the right for them to play in the final championship series. 2 weeks following their KIJHLChampionship win, the Wranglers then went on to win the Cyclone Taylor Cup
(the British Columbia Provincial Junior “B” Hockey Championship). They beat the Victoria Cougars of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League 8-4 in the final game.
In mid-April of 2016, this team won the Keystone Cup (Western Canadian Junior B Hockey's equivalent to the Memorial Cup), beating the Saskatoon Quakers of the Prairie Junior Hockey League 3-2 in triple overtime. This championship gave
British Columbia, its 9th Keystone Cup, the most of any province that participates in this competition (provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Northern Ontario).
This championship is also the first for a junior hockey team based in the Cariboo Region of British Columbia of any kind, since the Williams Lake Mustangs won a championship in the now-defunct Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League, in 1993. This is the 2nd amateur junior hockey team to call 100 Mile House home. For all you hockey historians out there, the 100 Mile House Blazers of the Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League played here from 1975 to 1980.
By provincial law, for a community to be labeled and qualify as a district municipality, they have to have an area greater than 800 hectares of land or an average population density of 5 persons per hectare. Currently there are 51 district
municipalities in British Columbia and 2 of them are located in the Cariboo Region, they are 100 Mile House and Wells.
Currently, 100 Mile House covers an area of 5,330 hectares and has an average population density of 35.4 persons per hectare.
Logging, tourism, and log-home building are beneficial to 100 Mile House's economy. In terms of the logging industry, most of the area's residents, work at a sawmill owned by West Fraser, and at a sawmill that manufactures Oriented strand
board (OSB) owned by Ainsworth (subsidiary of Norbord). Both of these mills are located at an industrial area west of town, near the railway siding of Exeter.
There are about 15 log-home building companies based in the 100 Mile House area, Due to this, the town has earned the title of being “North America's Handcrafted Log-Home Building Capital”.