The Slocan-Evans Creek trail is a ‘there and back again’ hike, following the Slocan lakeshore along the edge of Valhalla Provincial Park. The turnaround point is the bridge over the roaring Evans Creek, but the trail continuously opens up into rocky meadows and lapping crystal-blue shoreline.
Trailhead: Main Street, Slocan – BC Parks Kiosk
Distance, round trip: 17km
Guess what? Another old logging road. Back in the ’20s there were logging camps up at Evans Creek and the trail carried loggers and horses and supplies.
Parking is on the Main Street of Slocan, there are picnic tables and a BC Parks kiosk by the river. To reach the actual trailhead on foot, you must cross the river and take the dead-end road to the right along the shore.
Warning: do not attempt this trail in wet weather. Large sections of the trail cross fields of boulders and there is enough up-and-down stepping that the path becomes treacherous when slippery.
Up and Down, Along the Lake
The trail is scenic, but tricky. The trail winds up and down rock deposits, crossing spills of boulders and rocky meadows. I spent most of my time focusing on where I was putting my feet, and had to keep reminding myself to look up and enjoy the lake and wildflowers.
While there is no significant elevation gain, the entire hike goes up and down and up and down along the shoreline and it ends up being a solid work-out. The total uphill is worth 400m round trip!
Evans Creek is 8km down the shore and it took us about 3 hours at a moderate pace.
You’ll hear it before you feel it, and feel it before you see it. The roar of Evans Creek starts before you even come to the campground. The temperature noticeably drops with all of that cold glacier water churning down the canyon.
The campground is outfitted with pit toilets, a shelter, and picnic tables. There is also a small beach which is where we stopped for lunch.
And Back Again
I really tried to pay more attention on the hike back. The scenery really is beautiful with bright green moss and rolling boulders against the sparkling lake.
We took less time to come back, but it felt longer with my tired legs marching the up-and-downs, and it didn’t help that we kept turning corners to find glimpses of Slocan in the distance, always there and never moving closer! At last we turned a final corner and the path opened back up to the trailhead.