Shimmering turquoise lakes? Check. Meandering creeks and waterfalls? Check. Glowing fields of white granite? Check. Peaks all around? Oh yeah! Sapphire Lakes is a choice day hike for any kooteneers staying in Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park.
Trailhead: Kalso Lake, Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park Distance, round trip: 8.9km Elevation: +352m Season: mid-July to late September Difficulty: Moderate
The Kokanee Lake Trail is the main access into beautiful Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park. The trail starts in the forest at Gibson Lake and winds up to the sub-alpine realm of meadows, lakes, waterfalls and marmots. Kokanee Glacier Park is great place to spend a weekend, wandering among mountains and meadows.
Trailhead: Kokanee Glacier Road Distance, One Way: 8.8km (to campground), 9.5km (to cabin) Elevation: +578m Season: mid-July to late September Difficulty: Moderate
Do you like to earn your scenery? The Smallwood-Bigwood Loop near Beasley provides an uphill slog in the woods with an outstanding climatic view! From the top, you can look up and down the Kootenay River Valley to see Nelson and South Slocan. And looking across, you’ll see several prominent mountain peaks in the Bonnington Range.
Trailhead: Smallwood Creek FSR Distance, round trip: 4.5km Elevation: +370m Season: mid-May to late October Difficulty: Moderate
Less than ten minutes from Nelson, the network of trails at Morning Mountain is fantastic hiking! The trails wind at a comfortable climb and will take you through dark cedar forests, across wildflower meadows, and up to distant views of Kokanee and the Valhalla Mountains.
Trailhead: Blewett Ski Hill Road Distance, round trip: 9km Elevation: +544m Season: late April to early November Difficulty: Moderate
The Slocan-Evans Creek trail is a ‘there and back again’ hike, following the Slocan lakeshore along the edge of Valhalla Provincial Park. The turnaround point is the bridge over the roaring Evans Creek, but the trail continuously opens up into rocky meadows and lapping crystal-blue shoreline.
Trailhead: Slocan Distance, round trip: 17km Elevation: +400m Season: mid-April to early November Difficulty: Moderate