Hiking, biking and walking

Remains of the Similkameen dam
 
Walking: From the town, you can take a short walk south from the highway bridge to visit the ruins of the dam, shown in the picture above. Hedley once produced its own power for the mines and sold the surplus to the BC grid, but after river ice crushed the dam for the second time, it was not rebuilt.
 
Walking tour maps of the town, identifying historic buildings that once had other uses or were moved out of the area of the 1939 rock slide, are available at the musuem.
 
Hiking is for strong people with good boots and enough experience to know what they are able to do safely. Please note that there is currently no cel phone service at Hedley, so tell someone where you are going and when to expect you back, in case you have a problem.
 
There are four marked trails close to Hedley and others that are more primitive.
The main hike from town leads north up Hedley Creek, through a narrow canyon. You may need to wade across the creek several times and although the residents build small bridges, these get washed out by spring snow-melt. So hiking should wait until after spring runoff and four kilometers is as far as most people go. At first, the crushing plant was powered by a waterwheel fed by a flume built along the creekside; you can still see remnants of it and of other mine structures in the narrow valley.
 
The Okanagan Similkameen Regional District website has an extensive trails inventory with maps and information on trails all along the valley for hiking and biking.  As well as Hedley Creek, they list the steep Polecutter and Banbury trails near Stemwinder Provincial Park west of Hedley, and the Stemwinder trail high on that mountain.
You can find the RDOS maps and information here:  http://www.rdos.bc.ca/index.php?id=123 
Sorry, this requires leaving this website. You can return by searching for Hedley Museum.
 
Biking:  See the RDOS listing just above.
Every summer fit and doughty cyclists stop in on their way to all points East up to the rim of the Atlantic Ocean. It is amazing how many men and women are doing this alone- perhaps it's not that easy to find companions with the same life schedule to take on a long, hard journey. They have various theories of which direction to go, considering prevailing wind, uphill-downhill grades and whether to tackle the mountains at the start or after they are toughened up. We also see tours, especially from Germany, who do some of the area's side trips. 
For travellers on Crowsnest Highway 3 from Hope to Medicine Hat, Alberta we recommend "The Virtual Crowsnest" website, originally written as the travelogue of a man who bicycled the route from west to east, with the wind behind his back. www.crowsnest-highway.ca    
His lively description of Hedley as told to him by local residents is here: http://www.crowsnest-highway.ca/cgi-bin/citypage.pl?city=HEDLEY
Sorry, this requires leaving this website. You can return by searching for Hedley Museum.
 
 
 
 
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