Fall Hiking in Radium

By Tourism Radium on September 28, 2021

Diana Lake Lodge

The Village of Radium is lucky to have one of the longest hiking seasons around! We’re referred to as the Warm Side of the Rockies for good reason – visitors can expect to hike, bike, camp, and play well into October.

The backcountry beacons with the changing colours of needles and leaves. Before you head out, check out what to expect when hiking later in the season!

What to Expect

Weather in the mountains can change quickly, especially later in the season. At higher elevations, you may encounter snow (yes, already!), so make sure to bring plenty of warm layers including a jacket, toque, gloves and pants.

For longer day hikes, make sure to bring enough food and water to keep you energized for your day. If you’d like to pick up something before your trip, head to Big Horn Café or the Mountainside Market for a grab-and-go bite.

Best Trails

Here are some of our favourites for later in the season ranging from easier strolls to more difficult excursions. For a larger list of trails in the area, check out our hiking page.

Easy: Old Coach Trail

Photo by @dababielsen on Instagram

Description: The Old Coach Trail makes for a wonderful out-and-back excursion overlooking the Columbia Wetlands. Continue along the path for as long as you’d like and enjoy the views of the mountains and valley.

Distance from the Village of Radium: 5 minutes

Hiking distance/time: 9 km total; as long as you would like!

Access: From the Village, head south on Highway 93/95 for approximately 5 minutes until you reach a large gravel parking lot on the right.

Moderate: Diana Lake

Photo by Diana Lake Lodge

Description: The Diana Lake trail travels through forested slide paths and meadows, leading to the lake with bountiful larches. From Diana Lake, there are several options to extend your trip by exploring the area and surrounding peaks. Or, stop by the Diana Lake Lodge (open to the public for snacks and beverages July-September daily).

Approximate distance from the Village of Radium: 1.5 hours driving to trailhead

Hiking distance/time: 6.2 km/600 meters elevation gain each way; 2-3 hours hiking

Access: High-clearance, AWD vehicle recommended. From Radium, travel north on Hwy 95 for 16.5 km. Just before Spur Valley, turn right onto Kindersley-Pinnacle Creek FSR. Just beyond the 7 km mark, take a left onto the Pinnacle Creek Rd. Stay left at 8.5 km and right at 11 km. Stay left at the 14.5 km marker. Stay right at the 15 km, 23.5 km and 24 km, with the trailhead at the 25 km mark.

Difficult: Floe Lake

Photo by Jenn Morrison (@morr.jen) on Instagram

Description: The crown jewel of the Rockwall Trail! Floe Lake is a bucket-list worthy alpine adventure leading up to a stunning small lake and rockface. This is a challenging day hike best suited for experienced hikers. Camping is available at the lake but must be reserved through Parks Canada.

Distance from the Village of Radium: Approximately 1 hour driving to trailhead

Hiking distance/time: 21 km/715 meters elevation gain each way; 7 hours hiking

Access: From the Village, travel north on Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park for 72 kilometers until you reach the Floe Lake parking area on the left side of the highway.

Bear Aware

Photo by Kris McCauley

Autumn is when bear season is in full swing in the Columbia Valley. When hiking into the backcountry (moderate or difficult trails) sure you are prepared for a bear encounter by hiking in groups where possible and making noise on the trail as to not startle any bears. Never leave any trash or food leftovers on the trail – pack it in, pack it out! (Yes, even apple cores!).

Carrying bear spray is a good idea and can be purchased in Radium at the Mountainside Market or Far Out Adventure Hub on Main Street. Keep in mind that bear spray should be used in only emergency situations.

For more information on bear safety, check out these resources from our friends at WildsafeBC.  

After your hike, it is the perfect time to stop in at one of Radium’s fine restaurants for a bite to refuel! Or, take in a soak at the Radium Hot Springs pools to soothe those sore hiking muscles.

Want more information about planning a fall trip to Radium? Check out our suggestions for fall fun in the Village!

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