Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

Stellako River Wildlife Management Area

About This Wildlife Management Area

Date Designated: December 7, 2011

Purpose: Management of a historically significant, high quality fishery along with terrestrial wildlife.

Size: 503 hectares

Region: Omineca

Location and Maps

Along the Stellako River between Fraser and Francois Lakes in North Central British Columbia.

Nature and Culture


The relatively narrow banks and steep gradient in the upper sections of the Stellako River provide good conditions for Rainbow Trout rearing, and other parts of the river provide good habitat for adult trout migrating from tributaries. Sockeye and Kokanee Salmon spawn in the river, and also use it for migrating into tributaries. The area is frequented by Moose, Mule Deer and Black Bear, along with Beaver, Mink, River Otter, Red Squirrel, Lynx, Marten, and Coyotes. Bird life is abundant, including Bald Eagle, Common Merganser, and many waterfowl species. Trumpeter Swans winter in the lower and upper reaches of the Stellako River when open water is available.

Physiography, Climate and Vegetation

The Nechako Plateau is characterized by low relief with large expanses of flat or gently rolling topography. Fluvioglacial and fluvial deposits are interspersed with exposed bedrock and talus slide material; lakes, drumlins, drumlin-like forms and eskers are abundant in the area. The forest cover consists primarily of White Spruce, Lodgepole Pine, Trembling Aspen, Paper Birch and Douglas-fir. Some cottonwood stands appear on the floodplain, and grasses and low shrubs populate some of the steeper slopes. Steep canyons and high water velocities are common along the upper portions of the Stellako River. Cold winters (approx. -10C in January) and warm summers are typical.

Compatible Resource and Recreation Uses

Angling is the major recreational activity that takes place in the WMA. There are also opportunities for hiking, rock climbing, canoeing, kayaking and wildlife viewing.

Management Planning

Information on management direction is available from the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations regional office.