August 2, 2013 – Mt. Revelstoke National Park
It rained during the night and we woke to cloudy, overcast and foggy conditions. We waited for the fog to clear and in the late morning we headed to Mt. Revelstoke National Park and drove the Meadows in the Sky Parkway to the summit of Mount Revelstoke. We stopped at an overlook where we could look down at see the town of Revelstoke and the Columbia River though it is still overcast.
We could only drive to within 1 km of the summit where we parked and ate our picnic lunch. They have a shuttle van that will take you to the summit or you can hike the 1 km trail. We chose to hike to the summit which was a very pleasant and beautiful hike except for the mosquitoes and deerflies. At the summit we were greeted by a beautiful wildflowers.
We hiked a loop trail around the summit and stopped to see the snow in the “ice box”. It is tradition for the residents of Revelstoke to bring their summer visitors to the “ice box” to see the snow as there is always snow here all summer.
The views from the summit were spectacular.
Towards the end of the trail we came across this statue of a native. The trail was called First Footsteps Trail and was suppose to be an interpretative trail telling about the First Nations People but the park had taken down all the signs. We assume they are redoing the interpretative part of the trail.
We hiked another short trail to a fire lookout tower that is one of the last remaining lookouts from the early days of fire fighting in the national parks. The upper floor was used as a panoramic fire lookout, while the ground floor housed the living quarters. This lookout was built in 1927 and was staffed until 1987. Many winters the entire structure was buried under snow with only the flagpole on top visible. The wildflowers around the tower were beautiful.
We took a different trail down and enjoyed more beautiful views.
An overlook along the trail gave us a great view of the Columbia River.
When we were finished hiking Mariah and Nancy took the shuttle van back to the parking lot to try to avoid the mosquitoes and flies while Rex hiked down.
We drove back down the Meadows in the Sky Parkway and at the bottom stopped at the Nels Nelsen Historic Ski Jump. The Revelstoke Ski Club first organized ski jumping events here in 1915 and attracted competitors from the around the world for the next six decades. This was the largest ski jump ever developed in Canada and was the only site in the country where world records were set - 1916, 1923 and 1933. Nels Nelsen, a Norwegian immigrant to Revelstoke, set a new world record of 57 meters in 1916. In 1958 the decision was made to route the new Trans Canada Highway through the base of the jump area compromising the ideal jumping conditions. Skiing on Mt. Revelstoke was phased out in favor of a new ski area at Mt. Mackenzie outside of the national park. The last ski jumping competition was held here on Valentine’s Day in 1974. Rex climbed the steep trail to the judging tower you can see in the center of this picture. This tower and a few support posts is all that is left of the ski jump.
He got a great view of Revelstoke and the Columbia River from the base of the tower.
Another great day!