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Skaha Bluffs Hike

Where:

  • Skaha Bluffs

 

When:

  • April 26, 2021

 

Who:

  • Ed, Marilyn, Jace, Mary

 

Trailhead:

  • take Highway 97 through Pentiction and turn left on Skaha Lake Road, then right onto Lakeside Road for 3.2 km, then left onto Smythe Road
  • continue up Smythe Road for 1.4 km to the upper parking lot
  • the last km is on a narrow gravel road, so be careful of oncoming vehicles
  • the trailhead is out of the far end of the parking lot
  • the road is closed from November 15 through March 1

 

 

Degree of difficulty:

  • the main trail is a 3.4 km out and back trail
  • there are several branch trails off of the main trail, and you can easily get off the trail as we found out the hard way
  • the elevation is 200 meters, so it’s a fairly gentle ascent
  • we only went partway out, and it took us just under an hour and a half

 

 

Interesting notes:

  • the area is within the Okanagan Nation Alliance, which holds tremendous spiritual and cultural significance
  • Skaha Bluffs is predominantly known for its world-class climbing routes (66 crags and over 1000 climbs in 3 canyons)
  • the park covers 489 hectares and was established in 2010
  • Ponderosa pines are predominant in this area, along with flowering Oregon Grapes
  • the area offers hiking, climbing, cycling, horseback riding, hunting, and wildlife viewing
  • we always enjoy stopping in at Painted Rock Winery, which is on the same road and offers spectacular views of Skaha Lake