• Wilmer
    The historic Delphine Lodge


Wilmer BC is a tiny community situated on one of the benches overlooking the Rocky Mountain Trench, just a stone’s throw from Invermere – about 5 minutes’ drive, actually. Nestled among hills and valleys amid breath-taking scenery and clear mountain air, Wilmer is a photographer’s dream and a must-visit  for anyone who loves history. Put this spot on your itinerary when you are planning your vacation in the Columbia Valley.


History of Wilmer

Originally founded in 1886, Wilmer was called Peterborough. With some of the most spectacular views of the Rocky Mountains to the east and the Purcell Range to the west, the area is still home to many of the decendents of the original settlers.

Many of Wilmer’s original buildings remain today. Perhaps the most outstanding historic building in the community is the Delphine Lodge. Built in 1899, this beautiful structure has only recently retired from its days as an inn and is now a private home.

The earliest records show that, in 1807, the famed explorer and cartographer, David Thompson, founded a Northwest Trading Company post near the site of present-day Wilmer. He used the post, which he named Kootenae House, as a base while he explored and mapped the Upper Columbia and Kootenay Rivers. In 1812, it was abandoned because of the hostility of the Peigan. Today, the land where the post was located is a National Historic Site and attracts visitors from all over the world.

In the summer of 1909, the Alpine Club of Canada’s first professional guide, an Austrian named Conrad Kain, came to the Wilmer area and over the next quarter century, made climbing history, becoming a model for succeeding generations of guides and mountain lovers. He climbed Bugaboo Spire in 1916, took part in many important surveys and explorations in the area and guided clients to the summits of some of the highest and most difficult peaks in the Purcell Mountain Range. “Where The Clouds Can Go”, a book about the life of this extraordinary man, can be purchased at bookstores in the valley.


Wilmer | Wilmer BC