Difference between revisions of "Hot spring trips"

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From Pemberton, follow highway 99 towards Mt.Currie, after passing Lillooet lake, turn right on the Skookumchuuk/Lillooet Main FSR. Cross Little Lillooet Lake at the Tenas Lake Bridge, and continue along the West Lillooet FSR. Before reaching Tipella and Harrison Lake, turn right onto the Sloquet Creek FSR to get to the hot springs. See [http://www.bivouac.com/FtrPg.asp?FtrId=170 bivouac] for location.
 
From Pemberton, follow highway 99 towards Mt.Currie, after passing Lillooet lake, turn right on the Skookumchuuk/Lillooet Main FSR. Cross Little Lillooet Lake at the Tenas Lake Bridge, and continue along the West Lillooet FSR. Before reaching Tipella and Harrison Lake, turn right onto the Sloquet Creek FSR to get to the hot springs. See [http://www.bivouac.com/FtrPg.asp?FtrId=170 bivouac] for location.
 
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Beware that if the river is in flood, the pools which you seek may be flooded by the river, so choose your time/season carefully.
  
 
==Pitt River hot springs==
 
==Pitt River hot springs==

Latest revision as of 12:47, 30 March 2017

This page summarizes the major hot springs in southwestern BC

Meager Creek hot springs

WARNING: The landslide in 2010 has cut access to the Meager Creek Hotsprings. The bridges across the Lillooet River and across Capricorn Creek were destroyed and will not be replaced. Some reports indicate that Meager can be reached on foot (crossing the river), but this is not recommended. This does not affect Keyhole Hot Springs.

By 2015 VOC has a (12 km) trail Harrison Hut route providing access to our Harrison Hut from the S side of the Lillooet River. Half way to the Hut there is an old logging road that drops 500m of elevation down to the hot springs. If you follow this road, watch carefully for forks to the left and right, which you might follow by mistake on the way back up. The Authorities require that you not camp at the hot springs because of the danger of further geological instability.

Location: 50.57556°-123.46504° verified in 2015.


See the Recreation Sites and Trails BC website and Bivouac for more information.

Keyhole Falls/Pebble Creek hot springs

These hotsprings are relatively close to the Meager Creek hot springs, although on the N side of the Lillooet River. In the last few years the area has become considerably more discovered, and it's rare to find yourself alone these days, especially on weekends. There are a number of beautiful small pools although access varies depending on river level. The pools hold a maximum of three friendly people each, and are mostly too hot for comfort, though you can add buckets of cold water from the very nearby Lillooet River.

Since the big hydroelectric project in the area started, the old trail has been closed and a new trail built. The new trail is longer but actually quite beautiful.

Once the run of river hydro project is running, much of the Lillooet River will no longer flow past the hot springs. This may result in more warm pools being available, but there is the possibility of violent fluctuations in the river level depending on what the hydro project needs, so this might provide opportunities for fatalities.

Location: 50.66676°-123.46032° verified in 2016.

Directions, as of 2016

Great road updates can currently be found on the Hydro Project Page

It is probably possible to drive this road very slowly in a 2WD car with decent clearance and an undercarriage that you don't care about, if there's no snow at all. When I drove it last it was in a truck and I was happy that I wasn't driving my Corolla. I don't think there was anything it would actually have been impossible to get the Corolla up, it was just a long way with a lot of huge potholes and slightly loose sections. Generally low grades.

Note: Fill up gas in Pemberton, it's a 130 km round trip afterwards

  • Drive to Pemberton
  • At the stop light turn left (into Pemberton)
  • At the traffic circle turn left
  • Turn right onto Pemberton Meadows Rd (did you get gas?)
  • At the Pemberton Farm Rd Stop sign, turn left (stay on Pemberton Meadows Rd)
  • After 22 km, turn right. There is a sign here: "Lillooet River Forest Service Road"
    • I think the sign actually says something a bit different, maybe Hurley FSR?
  • Drive across the farmers field and cross the bridge onto the start of the gravel road
  • At km 9 fork Left (stay on Lillooet FSR, the right fork is the Hurley FSR)
  • At km 37 continue straight past what used to be the Meager Creek turn-off
  • Continue through the staging area for the hydro project. This is where the road was plowed to when I came. We parked here, it added about 2 km to the hike.
  • Just after km 42 is the parking area and the trail on the left.

Hiking Directions

  • The hike starts in a beautiful grove of cedar. There's a map here that makes it look like a really long trail, until you realize the scale is so huge that the map is totally useless.
  • The first part of the trail has some serious rockfall hazard as it traverses below crumbling low basalt cliffs. Don't stop to eat lunch here.
  • You soon come to the first waterfalls. You can traverse high right along the bottom of the cliff and go below the waterfall (fun but wet and more rockfall hazard), or you can stay right in the alder at the bottom (may be flooded enough for wet feet if the river is high).
  • A little after the second waterfall, you walk through some alder and over little bridges. Right as the trail gets out of the alder, it makes a little turn backward to head up a set of well-developed stairs. This is pretty much the only place you could go wrong on this trail. If you're climbing the cliff, go back and find the stairs.
  • From here the trail is straightforward to the camp site. Stop just after the big bridge to admire the valley, this is just before the site.
  • There are two fairly clear areas that are good for camping as you come up to the springs. The second one has a bear hang food cache platform. Neither has an outhouse so bring your trowel.
  • Continue down towards the river past the camp sites to access the hot springs, the trail after here is unmaintained and scrappy.
  • This goes without saying, but PLEASE don't cut any wood at the hot springs. The last time I was here some idiots with a chainsaw were cutting down trees. Cold? Go in the hot springs!

More info

Skookumchuck/St. Agnes Well hot springs

From Pemberton, follow highway 99 towards Mt.Currie, after passing Lillooet Lake, turn right onto the In-Shuck-In/Lillooet Main FSR. Follow until you reach the hot springs (just before Skookumchuck). See the 'backroads mapbook' for more details.

The hot springs area is well-maintained by the local First nations residents. They will charge you $10 per person per night + $10 per vehicle to stay there. You should also expect to pay if you were just using the hot springs during the day. Facilities include a lot of pleasant campsites, all car-camping, and numerous strange but pleasant pools, tubs, etc all fed by pipes from a central hot water reservoir, and most are also fed by cold water pipes so you can vary the temperature to suit.

There is a fine old church and two beautiful old cemeteries nearby. Please respect the locals.

Though a long drive, this is the most easily on-foot accessible hot spring in the greater Vancouver region, unless you count Harrison Hot Springs, which offers a municipal swimming pool as well as a private pool for hotel guests.

Location: 49.96460°-122.43204° verified in 2015.

More info: [1]

Sloquet hot springs

Location: 49°43.8' 122°19.5'
From Pemberton, follow highway 99 towards Mt.Currie, after passing Lillooet lake, turn right on the Skookumchuuk/Lillooet Main FSR. Cross Little Lillooet Lake at the Tenas Lake Bridge, and continue along the West Lillooet FSR. Before reaching Tipella and Harrison Lake, turn right onto the Sloquet Creek FSR to get to the hot springs. See bivouac for location.
Beware that if the river is in flood, the pools which you seek may be flooded by the river, so choose your time/season carefully.

Pitt River hot springs

GPS GeoCoords (Trailhead): 49.697, -122.71

Hard to access: a 30km paddle along Pitt Lake and a 22km bike ride along logging roads (Pitt River FSR).

C/O Hiking & Soaking in the Western U.S. & Canada

Reputed to be the best hot springs in British Columbia and remaining pristine because of the difficulty and length of the hike . . . plus the need to access the north end of Pitt Lake by boat before you begin the long hike.

The trail from the north end of Pitt Lake to the Hot Springs is a flat forest logging road. Once you pass the 13.5 mile (22 km) mark on the road there will be a bridge over the Pitt River and directly after the bridge on the north side is the overgrown trailhead towards the Hot Springs. Once you get past the overgrown entrance the trail is clear and overlooks a cliff to the Pitt River Cayon (this trail is approx 5 mins long). At this point you will find two ropes that you can use to get down the steep rocks to the hot springs.

There are two small pools with two small water falls that come out of the cliff. No sulphur smell and the algae is minimal. Right beside the pools is the rapid glacially-cold (emerald blue) river.

Beware that if the river is in flood, the pools which you seek may be flooded by the river, so choose your time/season carefully.

To access the north end of the lake you can arrange for transport with the operators of the Pitt River Lodge or Pitt River Water Taxi [Ask for Earl or Bobbie / Phone: 604.629.9884 / Cell: 604.649.2565 / Cell: 778.785.1491 / Four people for $400 (CAD) return and up to seven people for $500 return. There are no formal campsites in the area, but Earl offers overnights in a cabin on his property for $100 (CAD), not far from the Pitt River Lodge].

See the 'backroads mapbook' also has additional details.

Clear Creek hot springs

Located on the Eastern side of Harrison Lake. Follow the Harrison East FSR, then Clear Creek FSR (gated at start, 13km bike ride). See the 'backroads mapbook' for more details.

More information