Mount Baldy Lookout
Shuswap (British Columbia)
Time: 3 hours
Distance: 8 km (return) (including 2 km upper loop)
Elevation Gain: 200 m
How To Get There: Driving west of Sorrento on Highway 1, turn south onto Elson Road and drive past the famous Crannog Ales, left over the railway track, and then left on South Shore Place to park in the Cul-de-Sac at the Trailhead Kiosk sign.
This was the first hike that Kim and I did when we began our vacation at Shuswap Provincial Park in BC. There aren't a lot of difficult hikes in the Shuswap area but this one promised to have a nice view so we decided to try it.
It was a very hot plus 30 degrees outside so we tried to go earlier rather than later in the day. It didn't really help though because it got warm very fast. The Shuswap can get incredibly hot in the summer time.
Once we figured out where the trail was (it was a bit of drive and the trail head seems to be in a bit of a random location), we started off. Immediately the trail goes uphill and continues a steady climb for quite a while. The trail you are supposed to follow makes a bit of a C shape so at the beginning of the trail we could see the lookout point we were trying to get to. The trail was very heavily treed for quite some time. There were a few larger hills that we had to go a little slower on but other than that, we made some pretty decent time.
The closer we got to our destination, the less tree coverage there was. To get through the last few hundred feet of the trail, we had to climb up a very steep red dirt hill. Surrounded by small pine trees and assorted shrubbery was lookout point.
Once we got to the lookout, we were treated with a great view of Shuswap and were able to see the lake and Copper Island.
We found shade under one of the pine trees and had our luch. I had a bit of a lost phone scare and while searching for it, Kim found a geo-cash!
There was a rubber ball, drawings, pictures, etc. and it was really neat. We put it back where we found it and then we decided to continue on to the Upper Loop (mainly so that Kim didn't have to go back down the really steep hill...her and balance don't get along). We walked along the ridge for a while that eventually dipped into a valley and then met back up with the original trail.
Thankfully there was a lot of shade on this trail (minus the lookout part) and so we didn't melt! It was a fairly easy hike but still offered really pretty views once we reached our destination. I would recommend it for any one who is just getting into hiking and is taking a vacation in the Shuswap area!