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Lyon’s Bluff Trail

Lyon’s Bluff is a brand new trail climbing up Nelson’s north shore to a big view of town. It’s a great alternative to the busy Pulpit Rock Trail, but offers just as much of a workout and final viewpoint!

Trailhead: Highway 3A
Distance, round trip: 3.8km
Elevation: +300m
Season: late March to late November
Difficulty: Moderate 

Trailhead & Driving Directions

Leaving Nelson on Highway 3A towards Balfour, drive 2.3km from the far end of the Big Orange Bridge and look for a gravel road ascending up to a parking area on the left. The road is signed “Lyon’s Bluff Trail”. The turn-off is just after the green highway Kalso / Creston sign as you leave town.

Up the Trail

Head up the stone steps and begin the climb! The trail-builders laid out many stone steps which wind in a steady ascent. You’ll quickly leave the highway behind and begin shedding layers. Hike through ponderosa forest and catch glimpses of the lake below.

Through the ponderosa forest

Under the Hydro Line

After 0.7km, the trail climbs out below a hydro line and offers a view of Nelson below. Keep ascending as the trail switchbacks higher.

Unlike Pulpit Rock, the Lyon’s Bluff trail climbs through more open-forest. This means it’s snow-free earlier in the season, but also there is less shade on hot sunny days. Bring plenty of water – you’ll find none on the trail.

Fall colours on the Lyon’s Bluff Trail

Around 1.5km, ascend another long staircase of stones as the trail crosses a rockslide. You’re almost there!

Lyon’s Bluff

Reach the top of the bluff after 1.9km and about an hour of hiking at a moderate pace. There is a wide area with plenty of rocks to rest on. Spot the Big Orange Bridge (BOB) far below with distant Toad Mountain above Nelson.

Want to hike higher? Check out the Elephant Mountain Traverse for more info.

Friends of Pulpit Rock Society

The Friends of Pulpit Rock Society maintains this trail. You can make a donation, become a member, or volunteer here.

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Chris Cowan
Chris Cowan
3 years ago

Thanks Abby… I’ll try this one out soon.

Peter Lyon
Peter Lyon
3 years ago

Thank you all for your hard work, the Lyon family is happy that dad’s vision has come alive!

Shell Kane
Shell Kane
3 years ago
Trail Rating :

Great trail! Kudos to the trail engineers! This was as challenging coming down as it was going up. One thing to note: If you are bringing your dog, there are no streams for them to drink from, so pack water. They’ll likely need it.

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