a conversation with the earth guidebooks + guided hiking

Posts from August 21st, 2017.

Where Locals Hike in the West Kootenay

If you’re looking for mountains to hike that are far less crowded than trails of the Canadian Rockies, head to the West Kootenay of SE British Columbia. Get the guidebook, Where Locals Hike in the West Kootenay, by the Copelands. We were hiking there early August, when smoke (from far north and Washington) was filling the lake valleys. Despite that, we drove with expectation of clearer skies, to the pass between Kaslo and New Denver (two charming villages to walk around). We were fortunate to get above the smoke. In Whitewater Canyon and above at Whitewater tarns, we were blessed with clear skies and stunning mountain scenery. Last week, we hiked to Texas Ridge, above Retallack. Skies were clear until about 3 pm. When you’re in Kaslo, be sure to walk the 3.7 km loop that connects two delightful beet-stained, covered bridges. Also, eat at the Taqueria el Corazon. It’s near the S.S. Moyie sternwheeler, which used to ply the waters of 110-km (68-mile) long Kootenay Lake. Before you choose your days, view the live map which shows where fires are and where smoke is spreading:  www.firesmoke.ca

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Hiking and camping in the wilderness can be dangerous. Experience and preparation reduce risk but will never eliminate it.

Information published in a book or on a website—regardless how authoritative—is not a substitute for common sense or sound judgment. Your safety is your responsibility. The unique details of your specific situation and the decisions you make at that time will determine the outcome.

When hiking, threats to your wellbeing are unpredictable; you must always be aware. In the backcountry, risk is subjective; you must gauge it for yourself. Away from civilization, small mistakes can have severe consequences; you must vigilantly prevent injury and avoid becoming disoriented.

Never hike alone. Before setting out, check the weather forecast and current trail conditions; adjust your plans accordingly. Always carry a map and compass, a first-aid kit, extra clothing, a personal locator beacon, plus enough food and water to survive an emergency.

If you doubt your ability to negotiate rough terrain, respond to wild animals, or handle sudden, extreme weather changes, hike only in a group led by a competent, licensed guide.

The authors and the publisher disclaim liability for any loss or injury incurred by anyone using information published on this website or in the books presented on this website.