Crowsnest Pass Tourist Attractions
From Sparwood Crowsnest Highway 3 turns south-east and after 18km (11 mi.) at Crowsnest Pass it crosses the border into Alberta.The surrounding area of rolling hills and moutains makes for a very beautiful and scenic drive through this region. Reminants of the coal mining age still exist if you look hard enough. The small towns in the Crowsnest Pass area break up the landscape and the drive, giving it some life.The township of Crowsnest Pass actually consists of the former towns of Bellevue, Blairmore, Coleman, Frank, and Hillcrest.
Bellevue Underground Mine Tour
Considered by many the highlight of their trip to the Crowsnest Pass, the Bellevue Underground Mine Tour is well worth a stop. Visitors will get to strap on a miner's helmet and light and descend below ground to the old mine shafts. The Bellevue Underground Mine Tour showcases a "room", a coal shaft, and turn of the century artifacts.The Bellevue mine started in 1903 and continued operations until 1961. Tours underground take 30 minutes and the temperature in the mine is cool so bring a light jacket. The Bellevue Underground Mine also hosts events on a regular basis including the annual Halloween Howler Mine Tour.The Bellevue Underground Mine Tour is easy to find - just look for the yellow coal car by the side of the highway.
Leitch Collieries Provincial Historic Site
The Leitch Collieries Provincial Historic Site is a pleasant spot to wander around and soak up the history of mining in the Crowsnest Pass region. Across the well manicured site visitors will see the interesting architectural ruins of the powerhouse, mine managers residence, coke ovens, washery and tipple. Information boards provide a wealth of information and history.The Leitch Collieries were a bold experiment in mining and the operation was one of the largest in the area until poor economic conditions closed them down in 1915. The Leitch Collieries only operated for 8 years and it is amazing to see the amount of work that went into developing the site and operation for such a short economic life.