A walk in the woods, a bubbling creek, several bridge crossings! What could be better? The Sproule Creek trail traces a historic wagon road up to an old mill site.
Distance, round trip: 9.86km
Season: mid-April to early November
Trailhead & Driving Directions
Turn onto Taghum Frontage Road from Highway 6 near Nelson (across from the Taghum Shell). Then turn into Sproule Creek Road and drive 7km up. Near the end of the road, as pavement turns to gravel, watch for parking on your left. Cross the vehicle bridge over Sproule Creek on foot and then look for the start of the trail to the right with a trailhead map.
Up the Millsite Trail
Following the trail you’ll soon come to the first bridge crossing over Sproule Creek. In the spring, look for Western Trilliums and Skunk Cabbage along the path. In this summer, enjoy the cool valley shade and mossy slopes. In the fall, mountain ash turns gold and mushrooms pop along the way.
At 1km, meet the junction to the West Side Loop. This trail crosses Sproule Creek on a bridge and then loops through the forest. The Mill Site Trail continues up long the east bank of Sproule Creek and ascends at a gentle grade.
At 2km, pass another signed junction for the East Fork Trail. You can make a loop by returning on this trail on the way back.
The Mill Site Trail crosses Sproule Creek and then meets a forest service road at 2.4km. Cross the road if you’re continuing up towards the old mill site.
The End of the Line
The Mill Site Trail continues up the west bank of Sproule Creek, briefly crossing the creek on 2 short bridges to bypass cliffs along the bank.
At 4.9km, reach the end to the Mill Site Trail at a spot where old saw blades and equipment are embedded in the forest floor. The final bridge has been washed out for years.
Retracing you steps, you can make a small loop with the forest service road and East Fork Trail. Once you return to the road, cross the vehicle bridge and walk up the road on a steep ascent. At 7.3km, near the East Fork of Sproule Creek and at the second vehicle bridge, turn right onto the signed hiking trail.
The East Fork Trail heads downhill on another old road until it rejoins the main Mill Site Trail 0.5km later.
[…] Sproule Creek was snow-free and glowing with golden mountain ash trees. The boardwalks and bridges were slick, but we hiked all the way down to the final bridge (still broken) and then made a loop by following a gravel road up to the East Fork Trail. Lots of colourful mushrooms along the path, including a lavender patch! […]
The final bridge #9 has washed downstream. For the adventurous, you can cross 25m upstream from the bridge fdn. on a fallen tree and bushwack back o the trail on the other side and continue for 1.5 kms to a level clearing with a Teepee frame, strawberries and 2′ Poison Ivy, although No Mill to be seen
Main millsite trail was well maintained and snow free on May 16th 2020. Final bridge is still down, so out and back is 8.2km total. Other bridges have recently been improved/rebuilt.
Good easy afternoon hike.
Thanks for the update!