Saturday was time for an overdue hike in Gleneden. While that sounds like it should be in Scotland, in fact, Gleneden is a hilltop area to the west of Salmon Arm. From downtown, it’s about 3 minutes to the turn off the highway, and 5 minutes from there to the trailhead. Last weekend, my Handsome Hubby and I attempted to find the Syphon Creek trail, but could not find the trail or the parking lot mentioned in the guide books. With a little further research, we returned this weekend, and successfully found the spot, hiked in, and returned alive!
We were not long on the trail before I’d spotted a creature- some sort of lizard or salamander that HH had just obliviously walked over. It was smooth like a snake, about a foot long tip to tail, reddish brown with no obvious stripes. It gyrated away with an almost snake like movement, except for the definite little jolts made by what I presume were four tiny little feet.
Further in, we admired huge patches of wild raspberries, with little patches of fruit still on them. I picked a berry, and it popped off its stem like a velvet marble. Completely dessicated, it was rather chewy, but flavourful. A few steps on and the Handsome Hubby remarked that this many berries would make this prime bear area. I had just had the same thought, and sure enough, a few feet farther along the trail I was able to point out bear scat. Thankfully, it was not fresh, so we didn’t worry too much.
The trail wanders through a rocky area, thick under brush, and over a stream. We appreciated the pallet style bridge someone had made, as the skinny log alternative looked dubious. I was definitely puffing, being pathetically out of shape, but HH (who cycles a few hundred kilometres each week) strolled along easily. When we reached the waterfall, HH took some photos of me and the other beautiful scenery, and I took some photos of him taking photos.
HH climbed up the steep side of the waterfall, while I sat on a rock, below, wondering about emergency cell service, checking casually around for suitable branches to use as splints, and figuring out what supplies I’d brought that I could use to tie on a splint (FYI, a plastic grocery bag would be split into strips). I was glad not to need to put my emergency planning into effect, especially when a few moments later, HH read the fine print on a warning sign that announced there had been an accident there, and to take caution. (Upon our return home, HH read the above linked article telling of the 60 foot fall and rescue. With classic understatement I heard him mutter, “Wow. That would hurt.”)
This is Labour Day Weekend, the last one before the kids (and I) head back to school. It’s taken us ALL summer to make time for a hike in our own back yard! We live in such a beautiful place, we really have no excuse. Well, HH’s excuse is that he’d rather be on a bike, pedalling his way to health, and my excuse is that I have writing to do, but lets be honest, those activities don’t fill entire days, ever. Hopefully, next year we’ll be better at vacationing in our own area!
FYI this hike is labelled “More Difficult” (i.e. not ‘dead easy’). It was about 20 minutes from the small parking lot to the waterfall at the end of the trail. There are roots, felled trees, and large rocks to step over, between, and around. It’s definitely not a trail to take your aged grandma on, nor to try to push a baby carriage. However, if you’re reasonably fit, it’s a lovely hike, and it’s about 15 mins from my driveway to reach it!
What’s your favourite getaway spot near your home?