Sunbeam Creek Ecological Reserve Purpose Statement

Posted March 15, 2003 | Categories : 39,Management,Reports |

Sunbeam Creek Ecological Reserve is located on McBride Peak, 5.5 km northeast of the town of McBride.

The 511 ha ecological reserve encompasses McBride Peak and adjacent summits to the northeast and northwest. These mountains form the western-most flank of the Park Range, immediately adjacent to the Rocky Mountain trench. Mountains in the ecological reserve have glacial- rounded summits unlike the Matterhorn-like peaks of higher mountains further east in the Park Ranges.

A variety of slope aspects and terrain conditions results in a variety of alpine plant communities. Scattered whitebark pine and subalpine fir trees, largely in krummholz form, occur on slopes in the lowest parts of the ecological reserve. Extensive well-drained slopes above treeline are dominated by pink, yellow, and white mountain-heather and white mountain avens.

Primary Role

The primary role of Sunbeam Creek Ecological Reserve is to protect a variety of alpine communities representative of the western edge of the Rocky Mountains.

Known Management Issues


Inappropriate uses (transmitters, ATV’s)

Investigate the desirability of changing the designation from an ecological reserve to a Class A provincial park, and issue Park Use Permits.

Recreational use

Due to easy alpine access, the village of McBride promotes the area for recreational use. Designation should be changed to provincial park.


Rare/Endangered Values

Grizzly bears (blue-listed), wolverine (blue-listed)