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Hiking in the Brussels Lake Hills

Hiking in the Brussels Lake Hills

by Doug Smith

Hiking in the Brussels Lake Hills

Doug Smith  May 13, 2021 at 9:00 am

There is some fine hiking terrain near Six Mile Hill in the hills above the TransCanada Highway to the west of Kamloops.   An old road bears off to the left just past the Tobiano turn.    If you take this turn watch for vehicles moving quickly since it is a sharp turn onto a bumpy road.   Some of the Six Mile Road is paved since this was the old TransCanada Highway, but it is bumpy and rough now.   it is mainly used by fishermen on their way to Pat Lake, but is also used by hikers and mountain bikers.     Part way up the hill is a left turn and an open gate.   We parked there and hiked mostly on double tracks in a southeasterly direction.  We chose to stay mostly on double tracks rather than go over the hills on this day and we covered 11.4 km, passing a series of ponds and small lakes in an area of grassland hills and open forest.

Many of the ponds are shallow and alkali, but there were lots of ducks on the water in all of the ponds, lakes, and marshes.

Cattle also graze the area in the summer and the shoreline was trampled alkali muds.

On the south side, forested hills rise up to cliffs on the west side and eventually to the top of Mount Durand, 6 km to the southeast.

The rocky hills that surround the ponds and lakes invite exploration.

At the eastern most part of this area are fencelines that border the Cherry Creek ranches.  We were able to link up double tracks for a loop route without crossing any fences.

We have also hiked this area in late fall when the ponds are frozen over.   Spring brings wildflowers, migrations of birds and waterfowl, and mild breezes in open areas.

Grazing areas will have cattle in late spring so hikers or mountain bikers will need to be respectful of gates and livestock.

We enjoyed the spring sun, but were careful to avoid ticks too, by staying on tracks.

We completed the loop, hiking steadily for 2 hours, enjoying the quiet hills and the wet areas between them.

We prefer to hike this area and the adjacent Six Mile Hills in early spring or late fall to avoid grazing cattle, seasonal motorized traffic, and the hot sun in the open areas.   There are tracks that go up into the forest too so hikers and mountain bikers can create their own routes.

 

 

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Doug Smith

Doug writes for Kamloops Trails, a not-for-profit (and ad free) website, offering information on trails, waterways, routes, featured spots, viewpoints, and explorations in the outdoors in the Kamloops area (and beyond).

Doug started exploring this area in 1976 and continues to follow tracks and routes wherever they lead, with the aid of map, compass, GPSr and camera. After many dead-ends, but also many discoveries, he chose to share this information.

The Kamloops Trails website has a massive number of interesting posts and would be of interest to anyone in Kamloops who enjoys the outdoors. Visit the Kamloops Trails website at: http://www.kamloopstrails.net/

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