• Melanie Adair

Fall Hiking Guide for Hyde Mountain Loopout, Sicamous, British Columbia

Viewpoint of Mara Lake
Mara Lake at Hyde Mountain Lookout during the fall

Hyde Mountain Lookout is located a few minutes drive from Sicamous, Canada, and is the perfect fall hike. Tackle the 33 switchbacks by either hiking, biking, or horseback to enjoy the spectacular view of Mara Lake (motorized vehicles are not allowed on the switchbacks).

Quick Glance

Time: 5-7 hrs

Distance: 15km return

Trail: There and back

Difficulty: hard

What to bring: water, snacks, winter/waterproof hiking clothes, microspikes, and hiking poles.

Road conditions: Accessible by car. Only 400 m on an FSR.

Other information: Keep right at the fork for the parking lot. Internet is available.

Getting to Hyde Mountain Lookout

Hyde Mountain Lookout is about an hour's drive from Vernon or Revelstoke and 1.5 hrs from Kamloops, BC. The turnoff for Hyde Mountain is located on HWY 1, coming from either direction. If you are coming from the Kamloops area, the turn-off is just before the 'Welcome to Sicamous' sign onto the FSR on the right-hand side. If you are coming from Revelstoke, the welcome sign is about 1km from the Sicamous bridge on the left-hand side (**It is recommended to drive 3km past the sign to the rest area to turn around as there is no turning lane off the highway**). It is 400m on the FSR, stay right at the fork (follow the trail sign).

Hyde Mountain Lookout Trailhead

There's a small parking lot and the start of the trailhead is just down the road a little. Walk until you see the trailhead sign where there's also a larger map of the area (this trail connects to Larch Hill Traverse-a 38km cross-country trail).

Those 33 Switchbacks

Okay before you start panicking, they're not as bad as you're imagining them to be. These switchbacks will take you uphill for 3.6km but it's a pleasant incline and quite doable for most people. The trail is well used and marked, however, follow the orange trail markers in the trees.

Girl walking through the forest in fall
Taking the switchbacks up to Hyde Mountain Lookout

Enjoy the scenery as you go up those 33 switchbacks

Forest Service Road

Around the 4km mark, you will venture out of the trees and onto a Forest Service Road (this is where you can connect to the Larch Hill Traverse). Follow the road until you get to the signpost for Larch Hill Traverse. Go left, back into the trees (you can also stay on the road and follow that around) before connecting back again with the FSR. The road will slowly start to narrow as you enter back into the forest, eventually turning into a foot trail. Follow the foot trail until you get to an opening where you overlook Mara Lake and the North Okanagan.

Note: there are berry bushes along the FSR which attract bears. Please proceed with caution when using this section.

Walking along the FSR before it turns back into the trees

Mara Lake Viewpoint

There will be an opening where the trail ends, along with a few man-made benches to get in the fall views of Mara Lake and the North Okanagan. Likewise, have your lunch here, taking in the view.

Girl standing at view point looking at Mara Lake
Viewpoint overlooking Mara Lake and the North Okanagan

Hyde Mountain Lookout is the perfect fall hike to view some golden larches while getting in a breathtaking view and some exercise.

Hiking during fall does have a higher chance of unpredictable weather, always check the weather before you go. If you're looking for more tips on hiking in different weather, check out Top 10 Tips for Hiking in Cooler Weather or Top 10 Tips for Hiking in Hot Weather the next time you explore.

Fall Hiking Guide Hyde Mountain Lookout, Sicamous, BC


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