Smith River Falls is a worthwhile stop along the Alaska Highway in British Columbia. A deceivingly modest roadside points down a dirt road leading to one of the largest waterfalls in the region at 35 meters tall and 10 meters wide. This is where the Smith River thunders over a steep escarpment just before its confluence with the Liard River. It is also near the historic site of Fort Halkett.
The falls are easily visible from a drive-up overlook, and a short but steep hike leads to the base for a better look. This makes a quick side trip from the highway, with the only drawbacks being the rough access road and damage to the hiking trail. A 2.4-kilometer dirt road leads to the overlook. It is passable for two-wheel drive vehicles in dry conditions, but high clearance is recommended, and it is not good for trailers or RVs. You can see the falls well from the end of this road, but you can also hike to get closer. A wildfire in 2009 burned up the wooden staircase that used to lead down to the falls, however. As of summer 2017, the stairs had not yet been replaced, and a steep, eroded trail with a handline was the only way down. The hike is short and still worthwhile, but it is a bit treacherous because of the slippery slope.