A scenic tour of 4 cabins in the Rossland Range, circling beneath the slopes of Mount Crowe. This is a perfect snowshoe excursion or early-winter hike with cozy cabins and impressive distant views.
Distance, round trip: 13.3km
Season: mid-November to mid-April
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 Green 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 Crowe (northern) side of the highway. There are more cabins and trails on the Mount Lepsoe (southern) side of the highway.
With a network of trails, study the maps at the trailhead and decide on the best route before you go. This post describes one of the biggest loops, heading clockwise around the network, to visit all 4 cabins as well as the historic Cookie Jar shelter.
Up to Chimo Cabin
Heading up the trail, take left junctions to stay on the biggest loop. The trails mainly follow old logging roads with some new connections built between them. The route is wide and evenly graded. Most of this route would be comfortable for classic cross-country skiing as well as snowshoeing.
As you near Chimo Cabin, the trail steepens to a long steady climb. Chimo is perched on a low ridge with a big view of Old Glory Mountain rising behind Mount Lepsoe.
The ‘Low Road’
Leaving Chimo cabin, continue along the trail taking left junctions. The forest will eventually break away into wide clearcuts with big views to the west.
On a clear day, you can look across the valleys to see Mount Gladstone high on the horizon. Further north, the snowy peaks of Mount Faith, Hope and Charity rise above the forests.
The road contours around the slopes and then the trail heads off into the forest, following a recently cleared route through the trees. You’ll encounter another logging road, head up and stay on the main network of trails when the road switchbacks higher. As you ascend, watch for a spur to Viewpoint Cabin.
Viewpoint Cabin is the furthest shelter from the parking area and a great lunch spot on a longer day. We reached it after about 2 hours of hiking.
Viewpoint Cabin is surrounded by regenerating forest and doesn’t have a huge open view, but it does sport a beautiful painted door by local artist Jenny Baille.
The High Road
After Viewpoint Cabin, continue left up the road and climb higher until you come out onto the clearcut slope again. Now you’re on the ‘High Road’, starting to head back home.
Mosquito & Red Dog Cabins
Mosquito Cabin is reached at the end of the clearcut. It’s located at the intersection of several trails and had a big crowd of locals meeting up. There were skiers, snowshoers, fat bikes, and hikers. All out enjoying a beautiful sunny November day!
We headed downhill after Mosquito Cabin, slowly loosing elevation as we walked through the forest. After about 1km, we found Red Dog Cabin in the trees. This is an older cabin, but is usually very popular due to it’s short distance from the parking area.
Ending near Cookie Jar
We took a trail heading down from Red Dog to a snowy logging road where we’d started our journey. From here, it was another short walk down to the highway.
We took a detour on the left to visit the historic Cookie Jar Cabin. It’s one of the oldest cabins and has been closed to visitors. However, Friends of Rossland Range plans to maintain it as a historic site.
Hi Abby, my wife and I just snowshoed Mt. Crowe summit and took a rest/lunch at Crowsnest cabin. I can email you gps and some details if you like.
Thanks Mike! I do believe I have a GPS file for Mount Crowe but will let you know! It’s another good snowshoe route to add to the site. 🙂
Hi how long was the total trip?
Also im not clear on where the trail head starts
Hi Amy, the loop described is 13.3km which takes about 4-5 hours.
I’ve added clearer driving directions to the trailhead as well as a Google Maps link: https://www.google.com/maps/dir//49.2041761,-firstname.lastname@example.org,-117.8945663,528m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!4m1!3e0
[…] 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. […]
[…] start off at the same trailhead as the Lepsoe Basin and Mount Crowe cabin […]
[…] Hiking – We spent a day doing the Mt. Crowe Cabin Loop, an 8 mile hike to a series of day use warming huts. We did a little bit of post-holing, but […]