Title: Myra Canyon Section of the Kettle Valley Railway
Trip type: hiking
Summary: "The construction of the Kettle Valley Railway line through the spectacular Myra Canyon was and outstanding Canadian engineering achievement. Between 1912 and 1914, and impressive number and variety of engineering works of enormous scale were built high up on these steep walls. Engineers use conventional technologies in ingenious was to construct the railway through the rugged, Mountainous terrain, where workers faced the dangers posed by blasting and rock slides. The completion of this section of the railway helped provide a vital all-Canadian link between the West Coast and the southern interior of British Columbia" - Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada (as sign on the trail). This walk is a small section of this rail bed with the tracks removed. The landscape is recovering from the fires that burn in the area every few years. the old wooden trestles have been replaced.
Author: M. Tanton
Date of Trip: August 2015
Province: British Columbia
County/City/national park/etc: Kettle Valley
Location Route: Myra Canyon
Elevation Gain: not much
Weather Conditions:Good, warm and sunny, a bit Hazy due to fire.
Directions to Set in or Trail head: From City Park (bridge) N on hwy 97, S on Pandosy St. E on Cadder Ave (becomes Springfield Rd), S on Gordon Dr, E. on K.L.O., Right on McCulloch Rd. (lots of turns), Right on Myra Forest Service Rd. Follow to
Partners: Kaylyn (12yrs), Dana (8rs), Carol,
Authors Trip Rating: Good.
Trip's Good Points: Easy walk, affords good views over the upper valley's above Kelowna
Author's Email: nospammungeattrailcafedotcom (remove 'munge', convert 'at' and 'dot' accordingly
Map copyright Unsure , 2017
Considering this was the rail way line to Kelowna, it is at a pretty high elevation relative to Kelowna. So there is a fairly long and winding drive up from Kelowna to the trail head. At the parking lot, at least today, there is an outfit which rents bikes, at a cost of $40 per 4 hour. We decided to forgo the $160 bill for the four of us and head out on foot.
As mentioned, the trail is an old railway bed very flat. Well maintained The old 4 inch crush ha been replaced with a bedding of small gravel/dirt suitable for walking. The Rails them selves are long gone. There is no difficulty on this trail, the sections we saw would be very suitable for a wheelchair, although not as good as a ashphalt paved trail in that regards. (Please let me know if you think otherwise!)
The start of the trail has a kisosk with information on the trail itself, and is complete with out houses style toilets. It is probably worth noting that there is a less used one several hundred meters down the trail, so during the busy season you probably want to use that one if you can hold on.
Pine trees and tamerack Trees dominate the large flora. It is very clear that fires have swept through this region. Not all the trees are chared husts, but some are.
The trail is signed, with several notes on historical facts. The short section we went down included: foundations from an old work house. a rock oven used during construction. And kiosks signs telling of the history, books written, the fire, and replacing the tressles.
There are benches and tables along the way
And of course there are the train tressels, it is these that are the high light of the trail, given some history, and allowing a safe way to look down from the top (they have rails), and to look out over the valleys.
Unfortuantely the views are not so great when we were out there, as once again there are fires burning in the area, and there is a smokey hazein the region. We saw the fire when it was quite small as we drove into Kelowna, by the following day it was making the news. (It wasn not near the trail though)
It was a short day for us we only went out a couple of km to the second tressel. Highlight for the kids was the "friendly" chipmunks. When offered a pile if seeds from one of the plants by my daughter, it gave her a nip on the finger. Not enough to break the skin, but enough to get a squeal of "He bit me, BAD chipmunk!". I guess that will teach her not to feed the animals.
Fair Warning - consider reading before heading out.
Past work to clear trail from blow down
through a canyon...
One of the areas where Fire ran though a few years earlier
One of the first view points
First trestle, looking back the way we came
The trail is still wide and flat, though the trees.
Side trail down to one of the old rock cook ovens
Same off trail to the European rock oven - not wheel chair accessible unlike the maintrail.
View for 2nd Trestle
Coming up on Trestle #2
2nd Trestle with a handy bench about 5km in on the trip
A burning trestle
Destroyed trestle - lots of them were like this after the fire - Nothing left.
The Boys saved this one
There is an evil-finger-biting chipmunk in this picture... somewhere.
Content Copyright © M. Tanton 2017