HIKING: A Scenic Trail Awaits You…
To take in the striking scenery of the Lakes District, put on a pair of comfortable hiking boots and head out on one of more than two dozen trails maintained by Recreation Sites and Trails BC.
NOURSE CREEK TRAIL is one of the most spectacular trails in the area. This 6.5 km trail treats hikers to the impressive Nourse Creek Falls. The first falls are 1.5 km from the start of the hike and the second falls can be found 3.4 km along the hike. From the parking lot, the trail winds upstream along the banks above Nourse/ Allin Creek. As the trail climbs into the hills, there are great views southward over Francois Lake. Along the creek there are scenic hoodoos, waterfalls to admire and, if the weather’s right, some good swimming holes. The trail grade is fairly gentle with just a few short steep sections. To get there from Burns Lake, drive south on Hwy 35. Pass the Francois Lake Ferry terminal and continue along the north shore of Francois Lake for about 15km to the Henkel Forest Service Road. Turn right and drive about 1.5 km to the trail parking lot.
BEAR DENS TRAIL is a 2.4 km trail that is accessed through the Omineca Ski Club. It offers interesting rock formations and a breathtaking view of Burns Lake. Steep slopes make it moderately difficult. Drive south on Hwy 35 and follow the signs to the Omineca Ski Club.
BURNS LAKE SOUTH TRAIL is a new low-impact, non-motorized, naturally respectful trail system on the south side of Burns Lake that consists of 8 km of easy walking trails around a small lake and marshy area. There are several hikein campsites along the way with tent pads, picnic tables and fire rings, as well as some covered shelters. To get there from Burns Lake, drive south on Hwy 35 and just before the Omineca Ski Club, you’ll see the turn off for the trail. (Sections of the trail are still in progress.)
EVENESHEN NATURE TRAIL is an easily accessible trail in Burns Lake. This one km trail winds along a creek through the heart of Burns Lake. Hikers needing more of a challenge can connect with the Rod Reid Nature Trail at the end of the Eveneshen Nature Trail. This trail can be easily accessed from the Burns Lake Visitor Centre on Highway 16.
ROD REID NATURE TRAIL, is suitable for the whole family, the 2.1 km trail with its easy, wide, level-ground path is ideal for children and seniors. The trail circles around the astonishing Loch Lomond wetlands and offers hikers a chance to examine wetland plants and observe the area’s extraordinary birds from one of several viewing platforms. Loch Lomond is also known as Beaver Pond since it was created by a beaver dam, which is still visible at the mouth of the pond. It can be easily reached by driving up 8th Ave. then connecting to 9th Ave. until you reach the parking lot or by following the Eveneshen Trail from the Burns
KAGER LAKE TRAIL is a 2.8 km easy and flat hiking trail around Kager Lake suitable for all ages. Hikers can observe some of the area’s native plant species in this secondary pine and spruce forested area. There are also picnic tables and fire pits along the trail for visitors to enjoy. The trail system begins at Kager Lake and proceeds along the lake in both directions, with an option of continuing around Long Lake (6.4km). Secondary trails at the south end of Kager Lake provide viewpoints of the surrounding area. Free camping!! There is a car-camping site, with a large parking area for large RVs and trailers (6 sites, including tables, fire rings and three outhouses) located adjacent to the parking lot. Twelve tent sites (tables, fire rings) are located around the Kager Lake Loop, including one located on a small island. There is also one tent site on Long Lake accessible by trail or water. To get there from Burns Lake take 5th Ave. from Hwy 16 to meet up with Gowan Road. Once on Gowan Road, continue until you reach Boer Mountain Lookout Road. Turn left. Follow the road to the trailhead, located on the right (Kager Lake is visible from the road). You will pass the Burns Lake Mountain Bike Park on the way to Kager Lake.
STAR LAKE TRAIL is located further up Boer Mountain Road, near the top lookout. It’s 1 km down to the lake and a 4.5 km loop around the lake. Easy to moderate trail with some steep sections on descent to Star Lake. There are unmanaged tenting areas on both the north and south ends of Star Lake. To get there follow the above directions for Kager Lake but keep going past Kager Lake, almost to the top of Boer Mountain.
(UNCHA MOUNTAIN) RED HILLS PROVINCIAL PARK – There is a hiking trail that runs for approximately 3km parallel to the north side of Francois Lake in the Red Hills. The park is reached by road from Burns Lake via Highway 35 to the community of Francois Lake, then along Francois Lake East Road.
Trail Maps & Guides
Stop by the Burns Lake Visitor Centre to pick up their two Lakes District Hiking Guides.
They have great information and maps available on local hikes, lakes, fishing, biking and more!
The Lakes Outdoor Recreation Society has photos of many of the trails and recreation sites on their Facebook page.
CHESLATTA FALLS is another magnificent waterfall. A campground is located about 500 meters from the trail head on the opposite side of the road. The trail is 1.2 km long (one way), there are markers on the pathway. The trail goes through a peaceful pine forest on a ridge overlooking the roaring Cheslatta River. It winds around and finally stops at the edge of a cliff directly beside Cheslatta Falls, allowing for a spectacular view. Warning: the trail can be slippery when wet, as well as on the cliff by the falls. It is not suitable or safe for young children or pets. To get there from Burns Lake take the Francois Lake Ferry to the southside, head towards Takysie Lake, turn left on Eakin Settlement Road, approx 8 km south of the Nechako Reservoir.
SOUTHBANK NATURE TRAIL – a short trail that packs a big nature punch. Trek through a wide variety of local flora including spruce and raspberries and gaze out upon the cool, sparkling, clear waters of Francois Lake. The trail is very accessible and is equipped for any level of hiker with plank paths and hand rails. The trail is open from spring to fall. To get there from Burns Lake ride the free ferry across spectacular Francois Lake to Southbank. Exit the ferry and turn left onto Uncha Lake Road; drive 100 m to start your walk.
HOSPITAL POINT TRAIL is an easygoing trail approximately 600 m on a graveled pathway overlooking beautiful Francois Lake. There are two viewpoints along this trail complete with board walk and picnic tables. To get there from Burns Lake follow directions to Southbank. Exit ferry and turn right onto Hospital Point Road, follow the road until you reach the Hospital Point Hall.
VERDUN FOREST SERVICE LOOKOUT – Take in this stunning panoramic view looking east at beautiful Uncha/Binta Valley, Dayeezcha and Llgitiyuz Mountains. While looking north, admire the view of Uncha Mountain, Grassy Plains and Francois Lake. There are rustic trails leading away from the lookout that beckon to be explored. Great site for a picnic. To get there from Burns Lake: Follow travel directions to Southbank. Once exiting the ferry, drive straight up the hill on Keefe’s Landing Road for approx. 11 km, turn right at Keefe Landing/Ootsa Lake junction, travel another 12 kms, turning right on to Verdun Road. Continue for 2 kms. The access road is fairly rough.
Visitors to Burns Lake and the Lakes District area should be aware of the bears in our region. Black bears are common in our region and hikers are cautioned to stay alert. It is important to make noise to alert bears of your presence. A bear bell tied to a backpack is an easy way to let bears know you are in the neighbourhood. Remember to bring a can of bear spray.
Visitors are asked to carry out whatever garbage they bring with them on their hike. Have fun hiking and be safe.
For more information about hiking trails in the region, visit the Burns Lake Visitor Centre or call 250-692-3773.