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Raccoon-Badger Trail

If you think hiking on the Great Northern Rail Trail is a bit boring, then you’ll want to head up into the woods. The Raccoon and Badger Trails offer a welcoming experience for new hikers and trail runners- smooth, flowing trails just above town. Be cautious of descending mountain bikes and move off the trail to give them space.

Summary
Trailhead: Cherry Street or Gore Street
Distance, round trip: 5km
Elevation: +190m
Season: mid-April to late-November
Difficulty:  Easy
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Haiseldean Lake

A short hike to a quiet subalpine lake, with plenty more exploring on the surrounding ridges. The forest is studded with golden larches in the fall.

Summary
Trailhead: Redfish Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 7km
Elevation: +407m
Season: late June to early October
Difficulty: Moderate
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Mount Reco Loop

One of the best ridgeline hikes in the Kootenays! Hiking a loop around Mount Reco will bring you through alpine meadows surrounded by peaks. With the option to bag Reco’s summit, this is a great day in the mountains.

Summary
Trailhead: Stenson Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 9.9km
Elevation: +680m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty: Moderate
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Smallwood Lookout

The Smallwood lookout boasts one of the biggest benches with one of the biggest views. It’s part of a large mountain bike trail network, but hiking the Smallwood ridge-line as an “out and back” is an easy option with lots of reward.

Summary
Trailhead: Garrity Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 4.14km
Elevation: +153m
Season: mid-May to late October
Difficulty:  Easy
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Ward’s Ferry Trail

Ward’s Ferry Trail connects the communities of Blewett and Glade with scenic riverside hiking. Before the highway and railroad were built, Ward’s Ferry was the main option for travellers in the 1880’s to cross the Kootenay River. This historical trail passes by the site of the old ferry landing and traces remnants of wagon roads.

Summary
Trailhead: McPhee Forest Service Road or Glade Road
Distance, one way: 9.98km
Elevation: +335m (Glade to McPhee)
Season: mid-April to early November
Difficulty: Moderate
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McPhee Waterfall Loop

Everyone loves a good waterfall! And Little McPhee Falls is a two-tiered beauty that roars during the spring melt and quiets to a mossy trickle in the fall. This forested trail can be extended into a nice loop above the Kootenay River.

Summary
Trailhead: McPhee Forest Service Road
Distance, round trip: 7.66km
Elevation: +215m
Season: mid-April to early November
Difficulty:  Easy
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Dove Hill Loop

A short hike with panoramic views over Castlegar! This is a great shoulder-season trail as the main climb is snow-free in early April. You can also extend your hike to reach the Brilliant Overlook Trail higher above.

Summary
Trailhead: Aaron Road
Distance, round trip: 5.7km
Elevation: +182m
Season: late March to late November
Difficulty:  Easy
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Whitewater Snowshoe Trails

Whitewater Ski Resort maintains a network of multi-purpose winter trails. This area provides accessible winter alpine scenery and is available for snowshoeing as well as skiing, fat biking, and dog-walking.

Summary
Trailhead: Whitewater Ski Resort, Whitewater Road
Distance, round trip: 3.6km
Elevation: +100m
Season: mid-December to early April
Difficulty: Easy
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Motherlode Lakes (Carlyle Lodge)

Staying at Carlyle Lodge? Check out the trail to Motherlode Lakes. It’s a scenic hike from the lodge, edging along alpine slopes to arrive at a series of lakes and pools.

Summary
Trailhead: Carlyle Lodge
Distance, round trip: 8.6km
Elevation: +609m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty: Easy
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Boulder Pass (Carlyle Lodge)

A scenic trek around the Mount Carlyle bowl! The route to Boulder Pass is a great option if you’re staying at Carlyle Lode or want to extend your day hike into Carpenter Pass. The route leads to the southern ridge of Mount Carlyle with views over the edge towards the Purcell Mountains.

Summary
Trailhead: Carlyle Lodge
Distance, round trip: 3.2km
Elevation: +206m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty: Easy
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