Eugene Y. on the heather Trail:
“Our team went to check out the area around the Three Brothers mountain. The timing was perfect for this trip. The meadows were snow-free and blooming with wild flowers. Thanks to the SW wind, the skies stayed smoke-free despite on the proximity of BC fires, although we did see some smoke on the horizon.
Although the Heather Trail is the most popular route in the Manning park, it never felt too crowded, especially in the evening hours. However, due to the extremely dry weather, the portion of the trail from the parking lot to the First Brother junction was quite dusty. This might become a real issue on long weekends when more people hit the trail.
Unfortunately, the Kicking Horse wilderness campground was full when we arrived, so that we ended up camping in a crowded overflow area. We still had a good time over there. However, for late starters, it’s probably wiser to stay in the less popular Buckhorn campground half-way between the parking lot and the Brothers than take chances with the Kicking Horse.
The views from the First and the Second Brother were quite spectacular, although not as dramatic as those from the ridges in the southern part of the park. Some of us also bushwhacked to the Fourth Brother; however, there was practically no visibility there because of dense fog.
On the way back we stopped at the Lightning Lake for a good swim. That was a perfect way to complete the trip!
Please be aware that the statistics for this trail are somewhat misleading as it goes up and down all the time. In particular it descends almost 200 m to the either camp. The cumulative elevation gain for this trip is probably around 1000-1200 m.”
Colleen C. at Memaloose Peak:
“Great day to be out in the mountains! I was surprised to hear about the chaos on the Coquihalla – Highway 3 through Manning was a breeze. All day we had light flurries of teeny snowflakes that floated down even through the long periods of dazzling sunshine. Snowshoes were on from the start. Snow conditions made for easy travel most of the day, though the descent went through some wetter, looser snow sections that required some careful lines. We chose to take a different route than I had originally planned, following some old tracks immediately up to the ridge. This allowed us to explore more of the bumps along the ridge (one of which was topped with an eerily beautiful patch of dead trees due to a lightning fire) and then dropping down to the valley bottom for the straightforward hike out to make it into a nice loop. Due to gaining the ridge earlier than planned, much chatting, enjoying views and rambling, we didn’t reach the summit, so I’ll definitely be back here again soon.”
Colleen C. on Windy Joe:
“It was a great group that joined me for a snowshoe up to the Windy Joe fire lookout. It was a pretty uneventful, straightforward drive and hike – which personally was appreciated after a few recent misadventures! Particular thanks to Lisa for driving all the way out from White Rock, Phil for bringing homemade cookies, Haiying for supplying zip ties for makeshift snowshoe repairs, and Gail for good conversation.
The trail was packed all the way and follows an obvious path up, fairly low snow levels overall and few deadfalls. Just a heads up that the start is now along the first couple of km of the Similkameen trail. Seems like this is due to a permanent loss of a bridge, so some of the info online is out-of-date and the km markers higher up are a little out. The Club Tread route info page was accurate.”