Cathedral Provincial Park and Protected Area has more than 33,000 hectares (80,000 acres) of mountain wilderness featuring azure lakes, alpine meadows and jagged peaks of the North Cascades and Okanagan Mountain Ranges.
There are several well-maintained hiking trails ranging from easy to difficult. The trails at Cathedral Provincial Park are maintained by BC parks and private contractors. The routes are well established but don't forget you are above 2100 meters and weather can change quickly. Hikers should come well equipped with proper gear. You can always use your extra layers for a cushion on the rocky ridges to enjoy those sunny days longer.
POPULAR HIKING TRAILS
The Cathedral Rim Trail is the most popular. This hike (2500 metres above sea level) follows a ridge line and features spectacular 360-degree views of surrounding mountain ranges on both sides of the border as well as unusual and fascinating geological formations unique to the park.
THE GIANT CLEFT
A split in the mountain formed when softer basalt rocks eroded leaving a cleft in the harder granite.
SMOKEY THE BEAR
In silhouette, this jagged rock resembles the iconic mascot known for protecting our forests against fire.
A quartz monzonite formation, untouched by the ice-age glaciers and eroded by centuries of wild mountain weather.
FLOURISHING FLORA & FAUNA
The lower levels of the park are predominately.
Douglas Fir, changing to Lodgepole Pine, Engelmann Spruce and Sub-Alpine Fir as you reach the core at 2000m. Lyall's Larch, heather and lupines are common in the high alpine areas. You will also see beautiful, native wildflowers around the park during their peak season (mid-July).
Wildlife such as Mountain Goats, California Bighorn Sheep and Mule Deer frequent the high alpine ridge and meadows. High amongst the rocky outcropping hikers are likely to see large Hoary Marmots or perhaps the shy Pica.
There are seven lakes in the core area of Cathedral Provincial Park, four of which are stocked with both rainbow and cutthroat trout. These four lakes were originally stocked in the 1930’s by horseback all the way from Keremeos and then again in the 1970’s by fisheries. Since then, the fish have thrived on their own, which makes these four lakes the perfect place for fly fishing and spin casting.
Quiniscoe Lake is located next to the lodge and has row boats and canoes available for guest to go out on the lake and fish. There are great spots to fish off land with spectacular views of Lakeview Mountain. Lake of the Woods is about 25-minute walk from the lodge. This lake is full of smaller fish. With stunning views of the Denture Ridge, one could easily spend hours here. Pyramid Lake after fishing at lake of the wood you can stop by this lake on your way back to the lodge and fish off the rocks with views of the lake. Ladyslipper Lake is by far the best lake to fish out of in the park about an hour hike from the lodge. It’s a bit of a grind getting up the ridge but well worth it. This lake has a turquoise colour, and the fish are much larger. It is situated in the sub alpine and easy to cast with out getting tangled in the trees.
Dry fly’s such as caddis, royal coachman black stonefly, nymphs, black gnats, tom thumb and most small trout spinners work great for all the lakes. At this altitude, fishing should be good all summer. We have some fly rods and spin cast rods set up for guest to use. We sell fly’s and spinners in the gift shop.
Early season hiking at Cathedral lakes lodge has its rewards and challenges. Beat the crowds and leave the insect repellent at home. Enjoy partially snow-covered peaks creating stunning views of the cascade mountains. Be prepared to cross some snow patches on the trails we recommend using gaiters.
Enjoy Hiking on those long summer days with wildflower blooming in July, an abundance of wildlife in the park. Fishing is good all summer and the brave can swim in the alpine lakes. Cathedral Provincial Park is true playground.
Easily the best time of year for hiking is the fall. With the start of the frost in the alpine, the bugs dying off and the campgrounds slowing down. The cooler days make for perfect hiking and still lots of fish to catch. The golden larch later in September is a sight to see