ROAD ACCESS – West Purcells


FROM KASLO: Zero odometer at junctions of Hwys 31A and 31N just west of and uphill from downtown.
0.0 Start north on Hwy 31N toward Lardeau and Duncan Lake.
28.4km Village of Lardeau.
34.5km Turn right (east) onto Duncan/Argenta Road
36km Cross Duncan River Bridge. Pavement ends.
36.8km Junction. Right follow the Kootenay Lake shore curving south toward Argenta, Johnson’s Landing and Fry Creek Canyon. Left goes north up the Duncan River.
Zero odometer 

Salisbury Ck FSR
Turn R to Argenta, JL, Fry Ck
6.7km Keep R onto Johnson’s Landing road
10.9km Go L onto Salisbury FSR
12.5km Go up and L
17km Keep R at switchback; 18.1km keep R
19.6km Park in landing; 2WD in 9/01; connects with sketchy trail leading to col at head of S fork of Bulmer Creek; as of 7/04 the trail is easy to find from the cutblock
Kootenay Joe Ridge: take Argenta turnoff; from Argenta forks (“the big switchback”), follow road to Fry Creek
11 km. from downtown Argenta, bear L for Fry; At Fry Creek carpark bear L
12 km follow the signposted Kootenay Joe Rd.; start up past last houses and go immediately to 4WD LR; 7 km of very steep driving with some switchbacks requiring backing up to make the turn; 1 hr. drive from downtown to height of land at 6700′; one of the hardest roads I’ve driven as of July. ’95; high clearance only

0.0km Go straight at junction (right goes to Argenta, Johnston’s Landing, Fry Ck)
8.5km Rt Lavina Lookout Road.  Road was signed in 9/98; go to 4WD LR immediately; road is steep, with some 15 switchbacks, but is actually not that bad; roadbed generally good; drove with Fred 9/98; did not need to back round any switchbacks; at km 9.5km Top out near a little spur L to excellent campsites (1 hr. from Duncan R. road. Road continues 2.6 km. to Lavina Lookout
9.7km Rt Glacier Creek FSR
34.1 km Rt Howser Ck FSR
41.4km Cross Omo Ck bridge; next bridge is Dunn Creek (Dunn Creek Trail is signed 300 m. N of bridge). Access Four Squatters
50.6 km (158.9 km. from Nelson) Cross Cockle Creek bridge (old BCFS trail to Four Squatters LO is just past bridge)
77.7km 80 sign (190.5 km. from Nelson) Westfall River road goes L; next major spot is Houston Creek bridge (drove this far in 7/00; drove almost to Glacier Nat. Park boundary in 7/87. Road planned on being deactivated 2017.

10.6 km MacBeth Icefield Trail Road; drive 1.7 km. to a landing
24.3km Right Fork to Jumbo Pass; turn R off main haul road Jumbo Pass Trail head is at km. 27.3; driving time from Nelson to Jumbo Pass trailhead is 2 1/2 hours; in 8/98, drove to km 31.8, just short of the last switchback (this spot has a campsite, but no water); last several km. are getting badly hedged in by alder; for last km or so, roadbed is steep, rocky & rutted (4WD, 1st gear LR);
North Fork Glacier Ck: road l. to Lady Macbeth at 25 km.; Monica Meadows access road R. at 26.2 km. this spur road is about 3 km. long, or 29.2 km. from Glacier Ck turnoff
drove to landing beyond switchback in 8/99 (Larry Smith’s truck) just past the km 39 sign is the turnoff for the Four Squatters; said to be a bad, steep road
25.5km North Creek Rd: Turn R off Duncan River Rd
34.1km HOWSER CREEK: 142 km. from Nelson to turnoff;
21 km Turn onto Rory Creek road
33 km. reach very end of Rory Creek road at a landing at 5,100′; 2WD truck all the way in July ’90
Sluicebox Creek Road: tributary of Howser Crk. Road open right into basin below Quintet Pks., 199540 sign
40km Gravelside Creek Road 
Goes R off Duncan River road, 148.3 km. from Nelson; unsigned
Just N. of Gravelslide Creek which has no bridge and is a mere trickle in the alder
4.8km Go L, after 4 switchbacks
5.8km Drive to 2nd switchback, about as far as you can go. LR 1st gear 4WD, especially for final km, which is overgrown and has tricky waterbars; stopped @ 4,000′ & GR   in 08/06; walked part of road higher up, which ends in too much alder
77.7km WESTFALL FSR: Goes L off Duncan River Rd sign
85km sign Cross Track Creek bridge
88.1km Spur 100 goes R
92.1 km Spur 200 goes R (CMH fuel tank at this jct); drove this far in 9/01; 2WD all the way
2.7km Spur 200 Keep R
5.3km Road ends in landing; 4WD LR HC almost all the way; Howie counted some 80 waterbars; drove in 9/01; reached 5718′ 

Highway 3A south
 Exit ferry ramp
Pilot Bay Rd  Goes R behind washrooms at ferry
1.1km Riondel left (north). Access Kootenay Lake East FSR
4.7km Downtown Crawford Creek
5km Wadds Rd. Turn left for Crawford Bay FSR at 2.6kms to Plaid Lake, Old Tom
12.3km Gray Creek Pass Rd (Oliver Road). 150m past Gray Creek Store. Access E Kootenay
26.4km Lockhart Creek
42.7km Sanca Creek Road 

1.1km Turn left to Riondel
: This is called Powder Creek FSR by the locals
0.0 North from downtown Riondel
1.9km Pebble Beach Trail (signed) goes L
3.1km Pavement ends at the Tam O’Shanter Creek bridge
10.1km Portman Ck FSR to Bluebell Mt, Loki
14.5km Just past 9 sign Bernard Creek (not signed); past km.
19km 13 sign Powder Creek Rd
21 sign Unnsigned Campbell Creek road;
22.4km Campbell Creek bridge
32.3km Rt to Murphy South road
32.6km Murphy North road goes R In 9/03, drove Riondel road to km. 34.7 at junction (Murphy Creek Landing signed to R or N; L seems to lead into cutblocks to S)

10.1km Portman Ck FSR (OLD Loki N. FSR): turn R off Riondel road 10.1 km. N. of city centre; signed; near km. 6 sign; access to Loki at 15km up road
4.8km Bluebell mine L
5.8km go R
7.4km End of road @ 1400 m. or 4300′; about 45 min. drive from ferry;
15 sign at 1600 m. GR 513170/5522200. Park for Mt Loki TH. In 09/09, road extended.
12.9km Driftwood Cove Goes L signed
13.2km Garland Bay BCFS Rec Site: Goes L signed; There is a road on R; there are two rec sites, north and south, and two access roads
14.5km Bernard Creek Turn R just past km 9 sign; this road is closed; bridge out; beyond that, road is said to be walkable; not signed, but there is a sign saying road closed
19km Powder Creek Road Turn R past km 13 sign on Kootenay Lake East FSR; 19 km. N. of the pub in Riondel, after crossed Powder Crk. on a steel bridge; 4WD LR most of the way; roadbed not steep but very holey and bumpy; a few washouts; at 500 m, a road goes L
12.1 km Road ends. Limited camping and parking space (water might not be available); road improved and brushed out in ’98; still took 70 min. to drive in 9/98; driven 08/04; in 7/06 driven to end (road somewhat more overgrown than in ’04)
22.4km Campbell Creek Road Goes R off Riondel road @ km. 22.4 where road bends down and left; it’s at the km. 21 sign and on S. side of the creek; not signed; drove to road’s end at km. 3.6 in 6/04; 4WD HC LR 1st gear but pretty good roadbed; Tim Faiers’ lodge at road end; good parking; footbridge across to N. bank at this point; one GPS reading says lodge at 153-331, but that’s on N. bank of creek
22.7km UN Road Goes R off Riondel road at km. 22.7
32.3km Murphy South Road Signed; goes R. off Riondel road @ km. 32.3
3.3km Go L (3285′, 120-357)
3.6km Go R
6.1km Road ends (4855′, 128-355); driven 9/03; explored the two spurs R and L, which soon ended; right one did go 1.1 km
32.6km Murphy North Road Signed; goes R off Riondel road @ km. 32.6
5km Go L
5.7km Landing at GR 126-376); driven 9/03

0.0 From Kootenay Bay ferry, follow Highway 3A
5 km Turn L. at the Crawford Bay school and park (highway makes a sharp R. here). Zero odometer
2.6km T junction Turn L (right would take you over a Bailey Bridge)
4.6km Pass dump & sawmill.  Pass Spur 100 on L; pass Spur 200 on L
10.2km Stay L Do not follow obvious route over bridge onto “Crawford-Hooker Creeks Forest Road”
11.5km Turnoff to “Plaid Lakes” on L
11.6km Turnoff to Crawford -Springer Rd. on L.
As road turns N, continue along L. bank of Crawford Cl. Cross creek, go up hill, and make sharp L. (15.6 km.); continue along deteriorating road (4 WD low range) on E. side of creek
18.4km Road goes R (signed “Road Closed”; probably goes to Rose Pass)
18.5km Reach a landing with a hunter’s trailer (parked here in 7/04); beyond is a ford that may be driveable (it was in 7/04); road gets brushy for a bit but is definitely driveable to a big meadow 40 min.
Walk from trailer (plenty of room for parking); beyond this, road is overgrown with water often running on it; may not even be ATV passable; drove to km. 22.3 in 1992; road continues to landing in trees near creek and odd hunter’s warming hut (GR 229-145 5150′ GPSed) about 70 min. walk from washout; cross creek to W. bank just below road end; head up bank – 100 m. to gain boulder field; return driving time to ferry, about 1 hr.; drove in 7/02 and 7/04
Plaid Lakes Road Turn L off Crawford Ck road at km. 11.5; signed for Plaid Lake; gives access also to Mt. Crawford.
.5km Bear sharply right. Do not got straight into new cutblock
1.8 km Pass a bad road on uphill side; at L switchback on road
4.9km Keep R on a lesser road – Sign “Plaid Lake” 4WD HC LR but perfectly OK.; drove to very end in 10/03 and 07/10 at 6.8 km.; walked from km. 4.9 to trailhead and car park (an extra 1.9 km) in 25 min. in 9/03; 50 min. drive from ferry to car park at 5990′, GR 196-083;
Spring Creek – Mt Crawford Road Turn L off Crawford Crk. at 11.6 km
Hooker Creek Road 0.0 Crawford Ck Road
10.2 km Turn right and cross creek on “Crawford-Hooker Crks. Forest Road”. After crossing bridge road switches back sharp to left; farther up Hooker, there’s another spur that goes NE toward Canyon Crk.; continue up Hooker on N. bank; cross bridge; switch back again; road continues up and on S. side of creek
In Jn. ’95 driveable to a point 7.3 km. from Crawford Creek bridge; here there is a ford that crosses creek; 200 m downstream from this there is a spur road that carries along W. side of creek; alder looms over this, but it might be driveable; probably not worth it
Canyon Creek Road Follow Crawford Ck road 4.7 km. past Hooker rd. turnoff; follow obvious road to right that immediately crosses Crawford Ck (that’s about 10 km. from the dump)
Road diagonals uphill and to right and into Canyon Ck drainage; do not take two obvious turnings to L; for all practical purposes road ends 6.3 km. from Crawford Crk. bridge, although it’s walkable beyond this point right to last clearcut; driveable portion overgrown with bush in upper sections; some water in ruts; 4WD; can be driven 16.2 km. fr. dump; 1993

12.3km GRAY CREEK PASS ROAD: From highway, (45.2 km. fr. Nelson) turn L near store and before bridge over Gray Creek (signed Oliver Rd.), then an immediate R; cross Gray Creek bridge (signed) and go uphill and L
1.2km Go straight (signed Grey Creek Pass FSR)
6.7km Sphinx turnoff to L (mainline bends right and has a metal gate; 15.7km unnamed spur R
17.1km Oliver Lk. Rec Site
17.9km Gray Ck Pass
21.1 km Redding Ck jct.
23.7km Unsigned road goes R
30.4km Unsigned road R and shack
36.6 Baribeau Creek FSR goes L signed
53km Unnamed road goes R
54.1km St. Mary R. road. Roadbed much better on west side; scarcely maintained on east side
88km Kimberley 2WD all the way
Unnamed Spur Right Go R @ km. 15.7 from highway, just past km. 14 sign and before Oliver Lake
2.5 km Road end in cutblock at 6490′ (209-918); 4WD with some waterbars; decent road; driven 10/06
Powerline Road to Sphinx Mt Trail Turn left off Gray Creek Pass road at km. 6.7. Zero odometer and go to 4WD HC LR 1st gear. Ignore a spur left.
4.6km Trailhead for Sphinx is at just past the Christos-like orange snow fence on the downhill side of the road and just to the left or N. of where two power pylons come next to road. Ample room for parking and turnaround. There is also a flattened cabin at this site. Good roadbed; road continues to E, presumably following powerline right down to St. Mary River; driven 7/04 & 9/04 & 10/06
Redding Creek Road Turn S. onto road at 21.1 km fr. Gray Creek; big shed with fire equipment here
7.7 km Take spur to L. for Snowcrest Mtn.
13.9km Spur goes R to Baker Lake; driven 7/94 & 9/99
Snowcrest Mt Spur Turn L at km. 7.7 on Redding Crk. road. Change to 4WD here
11.5km Keep right
14.3km Park below washout and big boulder above road; could drive another km.; this section 4WD low-range; driven 7/94
Baker Lake Spur Go R at km. 13.9 on Redding road; cross bridge; drove to km. 15.9 in 9/99 on bad 4WD HC LR track; one very deep washout; high-centred but got out; parked only 100-200 m. from end; reasonable turn-around
Baker Creek Spur Descend to E. from Grey Creek Pass 5.9 km. Turn R; Zero odometer in 200m
1.3km Go R
3.3km Road ends in cutblock
2.7km Stop in middle of cutblock. Walk fire road right through block and up slopes to W. outlier of Burdett Pk.; drive 9/00

ST MARY RIVER FSR North: join it at km. 54.1 on Gray Creek Pass road; drove to junction with Dewar Creek FSR at km. 49 sign; it’s a 2WD highway; driven 7/04, 8/05, 7/06, 7/07
White Creek FSR Goes R. off St. Mary River road at km. 63; not driven
Dewar Creek FSR Goes R. at prominent junction with abandoned horse trailer at km. 64 on St. Mary River road; not signed in 07/04; driven to km. 7.8 in 7/04
Manson Col Access Road (Jurak Lake) Not signed; goes R off Dewar Creek FSR 7.8 km. north of Dewar/St. Mary West junction, just at km. 8 sign; goes 5.3 km. to 6600?? at GR   (gains 2500′) where there is a junction of two undriveable roads that continue; possible to turn round with minor difficulty at road end; 4WD LR high clearance 1st gear for much of way; steep in places but roadbed definitely ok; one tricky bit at a small watercourse; overgrown with alder for several 100 m. about 2/3s of way up; challenging the first time; no problem to drive down; drove in 7/04; much better in 08/05 (problem at watercourse fixed and roadbed brushed out)
St Mary River Road West Signed. Goes left at prominent junction at km 64 (km. 49 sign) or 10 km. N. of Gray Creek Pass road jct; re-set Zero odometer. Note cable car crossing
9.7km Road goes L (369-111)
13.5km Road goes L (336-119)
293-143 (Lapoint Creek) Road goes L
284-170 Reach fork (old road goes L)
23km Spur goes R
24.6km Road continues beyond this; this is mostly 2WD but old with some fords which possibly are 4WD; maintained by recreationalists, I guess; driven 07/07
Lapointe Creek Rd Goes L off St. Mary West FSR @ 293-143. Not driven but I have walked the top end of it from Rose Pass in 10/06
Spur Right @ KM. 23. Drive 1.1 km. into cutblock before stopped by alder on road; maybe driveable for a few hundred metres more; 2WD; 7/07; walked it north for 30-40 min.

Lakeside Road Turn R or south off St. Mary River road @ km. 14 from Grey Creek Pass road junction; cross wooden bridge over St. Mary River just at outlet of lake; driven 07/06; good 2WD
St Mary/Hellroaring Take second R off Lakeside Road 600 m. from St. Mary River road; signed; driven 7/06; good 2WD to this point
St Mary/Meachen Creek FSR Go R. off St. Mary/Hellroaring FSR @ km. 1.6 from St. Mary River road; signed
25km Has good km. signs here
29km Parking and trailhead for Hourglass Lake (signed “trail”); pretty good 2WD to this point; driven 08/07
White Boar Lake Road goes L just before km. 16 sign; signed but just says “trail”; not explored
Mayo and Ailsa Lakes Goes L at km. 17; not signed; not explored
Spur into Blocks Below White Grouse Mt Go uphill and L at 375-853 5300′ just near Hourglass Lakes trailhead; drove to end at 381-849 6249; 4WD but good road; about 7 km. from Meachen FSR; 08/07
Fiddler Creek Road Turn L off St. Mary/Meachen Creek road just before km. 14 sign; 15.7 km. from St. Mary River road; not signed; drove 1.1 km. to Mt. Evans Trail head in 7/06; good clear spot just beyond for camping and turnaround; very badly overgrown with alder but roadbed is sound; road continues beyond our parking spot

26.4km LOCKHART CREEK Provincial Park & Trail Starts 26.4 km. south of Kootenay Bay ferry landing on Hwy. 3
Akokli Creek Road Turn E. off Hwy 3 at km. 35.2 from Kootenay Bay ferry terminal, just S. of Destiny Bay; drove to km. 2 in 5/04
First Spur Turn L. off Akokli Creek road at km. 2
3km Keep R or straight Road switches up W. face above Destiny Bay
15.1 Road ends at ca. 5500′ on the S. side of Mt. Davie; good quality; 4WD HC but only because of waterbars in lower sections; drove in 5/04; road end is 90 min. from ferry

42.7km SANCA CREEK ROAD: begins 42.7 km. from Kootenay Bay ferry; 2 WD
9 km Keep L (spur R goes to Wooden Shoe Lake–signposted)
9.8 km Go straight, not up switchback to L
13.7km Keep R. or straight (left goes to Sherman Lakes trail)
15.5 km Cross on bridge to R. bank
17.6km Parking at 318-756, 1674 m. or 5492′; 1 hr. 25 min. drive from ferry; driven in 8/04, 7/05, 07/07
Sanca Creek E Fork FSR Turn R off Sanca Creek road at km. 9.6; signed for Wooden Shoe Lake. Zero odometer
.2km Cross Sanca Crk
1km Wooden Shoe Lake road goes R.
1.9 reach a junction. Road straight probably goes to blocks below Mt. Dickson. Right branch goes to blocks below Mt. Skelly; drove 10/0
Skelly Spur Take L fork off Sanca E. FSR at km. 1 (go straight at the switchback); go R at 2km Go R (straight probably goes to Mt. Dickson)
3.4km Keep L at km (do not cross to W. bank of creek)
4.9km Road ends (297-683) 6250′; 4WD HC LR for last km. because of sandy dips; driven 10/04
Jackson/Dickson Spur Follow Sanca E. Fork FSR and continue straight @ km. 2; immediately pass mildly tricky big rock on uphill side of road; 48 Road goes R. @ km. 3.7; switchback goes R @ km. 5.9; stopped @ km. 6.5; not really worth driving after km. 5.9 as rd. because very gnarly with deep waterbars; before that it’s HC 2WD; road ends in block @ 5900′ between Dickson and Jackson; drove 6/05 & 10/05
Wooden Shoe Lake Road Bear R at switchback on Sanca E. FSR at km. 1
1.9km Bear L
Drive to second bridge at GR 273-686 in 10/04; one muddy FWD section at km. 1.1
Sherman Lakes Trail Road Turn L off Sanca Creek road at ca. km. 13.7
16km Go straight
16.8km Go straight
17km Trail starts (Janice Strong says km. 16.4) from Hwy 3 at creek crossing (road goes beyond); 4WD high clearance because of waterbars; both road and trail are well-signed; 1 hr. 25 min. drive from ferry; drove in 9/04

THOMPSON FSR See Mountain Footsteps, by Janice Strong for details) From start of FSR sign
2.3km Bend R as cliffs are above
3.8km Switchback R on obvious big road as cliff bands are above
8.2km Drive to and park. Excellent wide road right to summit at 7000′; plenty of parking and turnaround space

GOAT RIVER FSR Turn N. off Hwy 3 next to restaurant in Kitchener, ca. 18 km. east of Creston; 2WD good quality the whole way
7.5km Anchor Creek FSR goes R
8.3km Leadville Creek FSR goes R
10.8km Cowley Mtn. road goes R
11.5km Goat-Hall FSR goes L
17.1km Bohan Creek FSR goes L
22.6km Junction (left, not signed, appears to be Kianuko Creek; straight ahead is signed “Kamma Creek/Huscroft”. Is this the end of Goat River FSR?; driven 05/09; driven 05/10
Anchor Creek FSR Goes R off Goat River FSR @ km. 7.5; not driven
Leadville Creek FSR Goes R off Goat River FSR @ km. 8.3; not driven
Cowley Mt Road Goes R off Goat River FSR @ km. 10.8; pass Branches 1 & 2 on R;
2.9km Spur 3 goes R. Drive through a col on W ridge
9.3km Stopped by snow on road (488-580, 4845′). Road continues a few hundred m. north to end in trees; not useful for ascents; driven 05/10; 2WD
Branch 3 of Cowley Mt Road Turn R off Cowley Mtn. Rd. @ km. 2.9. Zero odometer  4.8km Road ends (505-564, 4804′); no good for mtn. access; 2WD; driven 05/10
Goat-Hall FSR Goes L off Goat River FSR @ km. 11.5
1.3km Iron Creek road goes L; driven 05/10
Iron Creek Road Turn L off Goat-Hall FSR @ km. 1.3. Zero odometer N.
3.3km Iron Creek road goes R
4.6km Parked here (4495′ 468-538); road appears to head S and down; 2WD; driven 05/10
North Iron Creek Road Turn R off Iron Creek road @ km. 3.3; drove 1 km. and stopped by snow: 2WD; driven 05/10
Bohan Creek FSR Goes L off Goat River FSR @ km. 17.1; not driven
Kianuko Creek Rd Seems to go L at junction on Goat River FSR @ km. 22.6 (not signed); not driven
Kamma Creek/Huscroft Road Goes straight N. at junction @ km. 22.6 on Goat River FSR. Immediately crosses to E. bank of Goat River; bends E. and goes along N. side of Kamma Creek
37.5km Major junction just before a bridge; took L fork which heads N. toward Kamma Pass
40.5km Spur L. Driven 05/09; good quality 2WD
North Fork of Kamma Creek Road Goes L off Kamma/Huscroft road @ km. 37.5 from Hwy. 3. Drove for 3 km. in 05/09; spur L @ km. 40.5 from highway
Spur L of N Branch of Kamma Creek/Huscroft Road Goes L 40.5 km. from Hwy. 3; drove for 2.7 km. to GR 549-711, 5400′(stopped by snow on rd.), 05/09; road continues round to W. w/o gaining elevation

About admin

I would like to think of myself as a full time traveler. I have been retired since 2006 and in that time have traveled every winter for four to seven months. The months that I am "home", are often also spent on the road, hiking or kayaking. I hope to present a website that describes my travel along with my hiking and sea kayaking experiences.
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