Mackenzie-Grease Trail

The Mackenzie-Grease Trail represents the final 350 km link which Alexander Mackenzie followed in the first recorded crossing of continental North America in 1793.

The Mackenzie-Grease Trail represents the final 350 km link which Alexander Mackenzie followed in the first recorded crossing of continental North America in 1793. The trail follows an overland trade route between the Fraser River near Quesnel and the coastal community of Bella Coola, which was used primarily by various First Nations people including the Nuxalk (Bella Coola), the Tsilhqot'in (Chilcotin) and the Dakelh (Carrier).

In 1982, under an agreement between the BC and federal governments, the Trail became a designated and protected Heritage Trail. Today it is known as the Alexander Mackenzie Heritage Trail - Nuxalt - Carrier Route. The name "grease" originated from the processed oil of the oolichan, a smeltlike fish common in these parts, and a principal trading item of the Bella-Coola people. Much of the trail is in its original condition, but sections follow back country roads, horse trails and hiking passages. The trail can be completed by experienced hikers in about 18 days. Many hikers chose to complete only a portion of the trail in each season.