A scenic snowshoe beneath Mount Lepsoe in the Rossland Range! This loop visits four cozy day-use cabins and winds steadily up through winter forests to beautiful views.

Summary
Trailhead: Highway 3B
Distance, round trip: 7.30km
Elevation: +334m
Difficulty:  Easy
Total distance: 7555 m
Max elevation: 1887 m
Min elevation: 1560 m
Total climbing: 359 m
Total descent: -356 m
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Background

These trails are part of a large network in the Rossland Range. The Friends of Rossland Range have been working hard to improve the trails and rebuild a series of recreational cabins throughout the area. The new cabins are day-use only, but equipped with wood stoves and amazing views. They are a great destination within a scenic winter wonderland. Check out a map of the trail network here.

Trailhead & Driving Directions

Drive to the top of Nancy Greene summit on Highway 3B (also called Strawberry Pass). There are a couple of trailheads and parking options on either side of the highway.

  • From Rossland, leaving from the junction of Highways 22 and 3B (across from the Rossland Musem), drive 19.8km north on Highway 3B
  • From Castlegar, drive up towards the Paulson Summit. At the junction of Highways 3 and 3B, drive 8.4km south on Highway 3B.

We followed the circuit of cabins on the Mount Lepsoe (southern) side of the highway. There are more cabins and trails on the Mount Crowe (northern) side of the highway.

Trailhead at Nancy Greene Summit (Strawberry Pass)

This network of trails is well-marked with signs and junctions. You can choose your own adventure, but the route below describes hiking the loop clockwise to visit the 4 main cabins.

Booty’s Cabin

Leaving the trailhead, take an immediate left fork and follow the Seven Summits Trail around the gravel pit. The trail will weave into the woods and within ten minutes you’ll arrive at Booty’s Cabin, under construction and designed to be big and accessible for school groups.

After leaving Booty’s Cabin, the Seven Summits Trail rises through the woods and will cross a road about 1km from the trailhead. The trail switchbacks through a replanted clearcut, with open views across the valley of Mount Crowe and White Owl Pass.

Looking out at Mount Crowe while snowshoeing up the trail

Eagle’s Nest Cabin

Arrive at hexagonal Eagle’s Nest Cabin 1.5km from the trailhead. It boasts an incredible view south over Highway 3B with the blue of distance mountains rolling into the Columbia River Valley.

View from Eagle’s Nest Cabin

Continue on the Seven Summits Trail as it follows a ridge-line beneath Mount Lepsoe. The trail continues to rise steadily over forested switchbacks, and the scenic views south will keep shining through the trees.

Sunspot Cabin

At about 3km, the trail will reach a major junction with Lepsoe Road and you’ll find Sunspot Cabin just across the road.

Sunspot Cabin

Sunspot Cabin is a cheerful yellow with a beautifully-painted door. It’s got windows in all directions with a big view north-west towards Mount Gladstone.

If you’ve got energy to climb to the final cabin, head back to the junction and go up Lepsoe Road. The trail is just 1km from Sunspot to Lepsoe Basin Cabin, but gains a solid +150m of elevation.

Lepsoe Basin Cabin

As you ascend towards Lepsoe Basin, turn around to admire the view. Mount Crowe will be prominent to the north, but you’ll see many snowy peaks in the far distance.

The track follows Lepsoe Road and then veers off to weave up a clearcut, full of ski tracks.

View of Mount Crowe

Reach Lepsoe Basin Cabin after 4.1km from the trailhead. If you’re lucky, someone will have already started the wood stove and warmed the place up!

Lepsoe Basin Cabin

Old Growth Forest

To complete the loop, head back down Lepsoe Road until you reach the junction with Sunspot Cabin. Continue down Lepsoe Road and watch for a marked turn-off at the ‘big bend’ in the road (about 6km from the trailhead). This will take you down the Old Growth Trail which is a beautiful forested path.

While many of the trees are impressive along this stretch of trail, there is one absolutely massive cedar to admire. Watch for it after the Old Growth Trail crosses a road and continues to descend into the valley.

Looking up at an old growth cedar
Old Growth Cedar

The Old Growth Trail ends at the gravel pit, where it will circle back to the trailhead.

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[…] We followed the circuit of cabins on the Mount Crowe (northern) side of the highway. There are more cabins and trails on the Mount Lepsoe (southern) side of the highway. […]