Before Vida and I left for our hike to Wilson Creek Falls, I’d read that it was one of Canada’s most spectacular falls. And I thought, “Really? How come I’ve never heard of them? Even living here, no one talks about them like they do about Della Falls back on Vancouver Island.
But hey – I was curious. Besides, it was a chance to hike. So we met at the New Market in Denver and drove off down a dirt road that got bumpier and narrower as we went along – in other words, a typical Kootenay road. We parked and began our hike – only 1.2 K to the falls. No big deal. We went up and then as we began our descent, the trail got rather sketchy at best. It appeared to have a few switchbacks but it redefined the word “steep.” Not only was it insanely cliffside steep, but the ground was soft and peaty and gave terrible purchase. The trail then proceeded to get worse until I called ahead to Vida. “I’m not going any farther. There’s something wrong here.”
My “something wrong” signal lights were flashing overtime. Impossible that a trail to the “famous” falls could be like this. Washed away, Vida said. True – on a slope like this – but still. And so Vida agreed to turn back, saying she’d return another day and perhaps even do some trail building.
My gut told me to look for another way. We got back to the place where the trail had deteriorated. I looked and looked and suddenly – there – a fork. No – not a fork: just before the trail had become a non-trail was a switchback we had failed to notice. Aha!
We headed down. This turned out to be a real and actual trail anyone could navigate. A bit steep in spots but nothing we hadn’t seen before. And so – down and down (knowing the way back would be up and up) until the falls revealed themselves. Amazing. But it took until we got almost to the bottom where the falls and the full chasm they spewed through came into eye-smacking view that I stopped and gaped. Oh wow!
Honestly – I have not seen anything like this.
I can hardly wait to show them to Simon.
And so, what had started as a fairly icky morning with our first wet snowfall, deep gloomy skies and chilly air, turned into something quite wonderful. As I have mentioned before, it doesn’t matter what the question is, hiking is the answer.
Other things accomplished today: rented my one-week cabin stay in New Denver – it’s a gloomy little place but just something to get through for a week. It will do. And I suspect that part of the gloom was just the chill and darkness of the day. Disneyland would look unwelcoming on a day like this. After that week, the task of really building a home will hit full speed.