Stewart

Population: 400

Stewart is located on the Alaska–British Columbia border, about 2 miles from Hyder, AK, and is accessible via a 38-mile spur road (Highway 37A) off the Cassiar Highway 37. 

Visitor Information: District of Stewart Visitor Infocentre on Fifth Avenue, phone 250-636-9224. Seasonal operation (approx. mid-May to mid-September). The visitor center is staffed with friendly representatives who can help you plan your time in Stewart/Hyder. This location is a good resource with a number of helpful brochures on sightseeing and recreational opportunities in the area, including 1 on local hiking trails.

Stewart is located at the head of Portland Canal, a narrow saltwater fjord approximately 90 miles/145 km long. The fjord forms a natural boundary between Alaska and Canada. Stewart has a deep harbour and boasts of being Canada’s most northerly ice-free port.

Gold and silver mining dominated the early economy. Hyder boomed with the discovery of rich silver veins in the upper Salmon River basin in 1917–1918. Hundreds of pilings, which supported structures during this boom period, are visible on the tidal flats at Hyder.

Hyder became an access and supply point for the mines, while Stewart served as the centre for Canadian mining activity. Mining continues with Pretium’s Brucejack mine and the IDM’s Red Mountain Gold Mine is in final development stages. The economy is driven by forestry, mining and tourism. Several movies and commercials have been filmed in the area.

Visitor services in Stewart  include lodging at the Ripley Creek Inn, the King Edward Hotel and 2 B&Bs. Groceries at Harbour Light General Store (free WiFi) and Lucky Dollar Foods/Bobs Mercantile. There are three churches, a Petro-Canada station (gas/diesel, propane), hardware store, post office, BC liquor store, museum, and small shops.  Camping at Bear River RV Park (beautiful spot by Bear River) and Rainey Creek Municipal Campground in town. Dining at the Bitter Creek Cafe, Silverado Pizza, Temptations Bakery, and at the Rookery/Toaster Museum Cafe (breakfast/lunch only). Fishing and sightseeing charters on Portland Canal available. Cellular service is available within Stewart town limits.

Attractions:

  • Stewart Historical Society Museum, in the Courthouse/Service BC building on Brightwell Street, has wildlife and historical items exhibits. Group tours of Stewart historical structures may be arranged, email the museum.
  • Explore the Estuary Boardwalk for spectacular views of Portland Canal. Interpretive panels explain flora and fauna.
  • Take a self-guided tour out Salmon Glacier Road to see spectacular Salmon Glacier.
  • The oldest masonry building in Alaska is located on the international border at Eagle Point. This stone storehouse was built by Captain D.D. Gaillard in 1896.
  • Observe brown (grizzly) and black bears as they fish for chum and pink salmon at Fish Creek Wildlife Viewing Area.
  • July 1 Stewart celebrate Canada Day. Parade and fireworks.