Hike the Hoodoos Trail
January 15, 2019
The hoodoos trail just outside Fairmont Hot Springs, British Columbia is a short hike that is worth an hour of your day.
Locals refer to the hoodoos by two different names – ‘Dutch Creek Hoodoos’ and ‘Fairmont Hoodoos’.
The hike is approximately a 3 kilometer or a 1-hour round-trip hike.
On the ascent and descent, there are glimpses of Columbia Lake and the Rocky Mountains. At the top, the views of Columbia Lake are spectacular.
Watch your step as there are steep drop-offs at the top of the hoodoos.
During the winter months, consider taking ‘winter grippers’ as the packed snow can be slick.
To actually see the hoodoos themselves, plan on a stop along Kootenay Highway. You can’t safely see the full ‘wow’ of the hoodoos from the top of the hike.
The hike is labeled ‘easy’ by many trail review sites. ‘Easy’ is relative to your hiking abilities and altitude adaptation. With a starting point of 3100’, flatlanders might consider it a moderate hike. Anyone who is not an experienced hiker should consider it a moderate hike.
The hoodoos are located in the Columbia Valley in British Columbia, Canada.
The trailhead is on The Nature Trust land. Off of the Kootenay Highway, turn right onto Westside Road. The second left-hand turn-off is the parking lot.
We didn’t see any obvious signs indicating parking until after we turned into the parking lot. If you’ve gone more than about 1-kilometer on Westside Road, you’ve missed the parking lot.
Geologically speaking, erosion creates hoodoos. Weather elements (rain, wind, snow) wear away the softer layers of rock and sediment and the hoodoos are formed.
From a conservation perspective, the area is a collaborative effort between The Nature Trust of British Columbia (TNT) and the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). The Columbia Valley is listed by NCC as a wildlife corridor. The TNT indicates the conservation land is important for the ‘…ungulate wintering range’. Googling ‘ungulate’ shows that any mammal with hooves fits that definition.
The hoodoos are an experience worth planning into your day. Plan on adding the hike into a schedule that includes a visit to Lussier Hot Springs.
- Trip Date: December 2018
- Name: Dutch Creek Hoodoos
- Location: Westside Rd, East Kootenay, British Columbia
- Family friendly: yes
- Cost: Free