A two-kilometre-wide landslide has been reported near Meager Creek Hot Spring, about 95 kilometres north of Pemberton, B.C.
Authorities say an unknown number of people are trapped in the area, which is popular with campers and swimmers, but there was no word on injuries by midday Friday.
“RCMP are saying that a side of the mountain called Capricorn Mountain essentially gave way,” CBC News reporter Lisa Johnson told CBC News Network on Friday. “They are calling it a large-scale avalanche.”
The flow of rock and soil debris has covered a river in the area, causing water to become blocked upstream of the slide and threatening nearby ranchers' fields, Johnson said. Downstream, water levels are dropping.
Meager Creek flows northeast into the Lillooet River, and is known for a series of hot-spring pools on its banks.
“The Japanese-style hot spring, in a natural outdoor setting, offers three natural rock baths, a self-composting toilet, and a change room,” notes the region's page on VancouverIsland.com. The entry adds that the spring's clothing-optional day-use park is maintained by Recreation Sites and Trails BC.
In the past, the area has occasionally been closed to public access in the aftermath of landslides, including one that took out the Capricorn Creek Bridge in September 2009.