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Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area

Central Okanagan-Similkameen Area, British Columbia

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Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area

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  • The trail up Needle Peak and The Flatiron is a winter wonderland- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • The views from the col between Yak Peak and The Flatiron are excellent.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • The start of the descent from Needle Peak.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • Skinning up Thar Ridge.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • Falls Lake with Thar Ridge's steep wall.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • Nak Peak has a great ridge.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • Descending from Thar Ridge.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • A nice view of Yak Peak in the clouds from Thar Ridge.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • View of Markhor Peak.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • The true summit of Yak Peak.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
  • The col between the south peak and the main peak of Yak.- Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Solitude. Great mountains. Wilderness.
Cons: 
Isolation. Park is divided by a highway.
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Region:
Central Okanagan-Similkameen Area, BC
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Year round: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
None
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

The Coquihalla Summit Recreation Area was established in 1987 and is managed by BC Parks. It lies on Highway 5, 45 kilometers north of Hope and 75 kilometers south of Merritt. It is described by BC Parks as a “transition zone between the coastal and southern interior environment with four different biogeoclimatic zones with granite peak features and historic features”.

The park covers 5,750 hectares of mountainous terrain and is a wonderful venue for outdoors enthusiasts. Activities such as fishing (Falls Lake), hunting, hiking, scrambling, climbing and horseback riding can be enjoyed. BC Parks has more information on licenses required for hunting and fishing.

The Coquihalla generally receives more sunlight than coastal BC and makes for a great daytrip when the weather turns gray in Vancouver in November and the winter months.

In winter, the Coquihalla gets heavy snowfall, ensuring a healthy snowpack that lasts from late fall to early spring. This means that backcountry skiing, splitboarding and snowshoeing are all great options for the colder months. Avalanche conditions should be monitored prior to a visit, and safety equipment should be used whenever venturing on avalanche terrain. The highway is also notorious for accidents and closures, so venturing on it when bad weather is expected is not recommended.

There are walk-in campsites 2 kilometers in at Falls Lake and backcountry camping is available in the park. Pets are also allowed in the park. Don’t forget to clean after them and bring back everything that was brought to a campsite. Pit and flush toilets are available throughout the park at rest areas.

Some of the popular outings in the area include Zoa Peak, Thar Ridge, Yak Peak and Needle Peak.

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Field Guide

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Adventures

(3 within a 30 mile radius)

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