Hub of the eastern Kootenays, Cranbrook (population 20,000) nestles at the base of the Purcell Mountains 106 kilometers (66 miles) east of Creston and provides spectacular views eastward to the Canadian Rockies. The locals are proud of their downtown heritage buildings, which you can view on a self-guided walking tour by picking up the handy Cranbrook Heritage Tour brochure from either information center or the railway museum (stop number one on the tour).
The main Cranbrook Visitor Centre (2279 Cranbrook St. N, 250/426-5914 or 800/222-6174, www.cranbrookchamber.com, daily 9 a.m.–5 p.m. in summer, Mon.–Fri. 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. the rest of the year) is at the north entrance to town.
© Andrew Hempstead, from Moon Western Canada, 3rd Edition