Sticta Falls and the Dragon's Tongue

Sticta Falls and the Dragon’s Tongue

Doug Smith  October 4, 2021 at 9:00 am

From the Clearwater Lake campsites there are trailheads to several trails, including the Sticta Falls and Dragon’s Tongue Trails.      In the morning we we hiked on the trail which goes through a cedar-hemlock forest.     

A junction is reached with the left fork going up to the Osprey Lookout and the Chain Meadows Trail and the right fork going to Sticta Falls and the Dragon’s Tongue.  

We arrived at Falls Creek where water ran through a channel in the lava flow below the bridge.  

We followed a side trail down to the bottom of Sticta Falls, a wonderful spot.    Falls Creek tumbles down from the Cariboo Mountains to the northeast, passing through lava flows on its way to the Clearwater River.  

Near the Falls, a cliff shows the many layers of metamorphosed sediments, from over 300 million years ago. 

Across Falls Creek a wall of lava has been eroded away to show basalt blocks.    This is part of the Dragon’s Tongue, a lava flow from the east from about 8500 years ago. 

We hiked the signed Dragon’s Tongue Loop, a short hike across rocky lava rock, now mostly covered by sediments and forest detritus.   Some a’a rock could be spotted at some stops along the way.   The lava flow continues for 15 km to the northeast to the Dragon’s Tongue Cone.   Access to this area is difficult.    

We hiked out and back, then up the Osprey Lookout Trail.   The lower section which includes Sticta Falls and the Dragon’s Tongue is about 2.6 km return.  A few more photos are shared here.    Click an image for a lightbox view and a caption.





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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.

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