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McKean Lakes

McKean Lakes is a worthwhile alpine destination, tucked away on the edge of Valhalla Provincial Park. The road is long, the trail is steep, but the lakes are cradled beneath impressive peaks.

Summary
Trailhead: Koch Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 10.4km
Elevation: +671m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Grassy Mountain

Grassy Mountain is renown for its winter powder, but it’s also a great summer destination for those that don’t mind hiking off trail. You can explore the ridges which are full of spring wildflowers and offer big wide views of the Bonnington Range.

Summary
Trailhead: Munson FSR
Distance, round trip: 14km
Elevation: +663m
Season: early June to early October.
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Elephant Mountain Traverse (CBC Tower)

Going up and over Elephant Mountain is a big day. But sometimes that’s just what you need to break in those boots! This is a difficult hike with significant elevation, but it’s scenic and close to home! At each milestone, the City of Nelson shrinks further below and more and more peaks unfold from the distant valleys.

Summary
Trailhead: Pulpit Rock Trailhead or Lyon’s Bluff Trailhead
Distance, round trip: 13.5km
Elevation: +1120m
Season: mid-May to late October
Difficulty:  Difficult
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Ymir Mountain via Ymir Bowl

Ymir Mountain is renowned for its powder, but it’s also a perfectly hike-able summer excursion. Achieving the summit involves getting off trail to traverse the boulders and scree in the Ymir Bowl, but the reward is ridge-line hiking with spectacular views!

Summary
Trailhead: Whitewater Ski Hill Road
Distance, round trip: 6.7km
Elevation: +760m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Difficult

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Lyle Lakes & Mount Brennan

Cradled beneath Mount Brennan’s flanks are three subalpine lakes, glowing mineral-blue and suspended between braided waterfalls. The Lyle Lakes are a beautiful destination! And the trail beyond to Mount Brennan’s 2900m summit offers a challenging hike with staggering views.

Summary
Trailhead: Rossiter Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 10km (Lyle Lakes), 17km (Mt Brennan)
Elevation: +710m (Lyle Lakes), +1574m (Mt Brennan)
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Difficult (Lyle Lakes),  Challenging (Mt Brennan)

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Mount Crawford & Plaid Lake Trail

Shimmering with colourful quartzite, Mount Crawford dazzles hikers along the Plaid Lake Trail. With scenic alpine ridges, flowering meadows, a quick summit, and the eventual dip down to Plaid Lake, this is an amazing trail with something for everyone!

Summary
Trailhead: Plaid Lake Road
Distance, round trip: 9.7km
Elevation: +890m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Difficult

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Mount Loki

In Norse mythology, Loki is a deceptive trickster, causing trouble and strife among the realms of the gods. And Mount Loki is no different. With false summits, an intimidating profile, and a fierce ascent, Mount Loki challenges hikers to make it to the summit. The reward is top-of-the-world views of the Purcell Mountains and distant Kootenay Lake.

Summary
Trailhead: Portman Creek FSR
Distance, round trip: 11.6km
Elevation: +1137m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Challenging 

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Mt. Giegerich / Sapphire Lakes Loop

Just starting to venture off trail? Mt. Giegerich is a gentle giant with two easy ridge-lines, inviting you to walk on up! This loop follows the official Sapphire Lakes Trail, summits Giegerich, dips down to the Sapphire Lakes, and then returns to Kaslo Lake via the unofficial Commission Creek route. It’s a wonderful circuit for folks staying in Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park – offering a day hike that’s moderate yet adventurous.

Summary
Trailhead: Kalso Lake, Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park
Distance, round trip: 8.6km
Elevation: +490m
Season: mid-July to late September
Difficulty:  Moderate

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