Often the best scenery in a community is from a hiking trail which involves some elevation hiking. When visiting the community of Castlegar, British Columbia, Canada the Brilliant Overlook Trail (BOT) is exactly one of those trails providing exactly that – some great scenery of the surrounding region and some tranquil moments with nature.
The Brilliant Overlook Trail is an uphill hike which explores the steep slopes of Mount Elsdon. The 2.5 kilometre trail provides some wide open views of the Kootenay River, the Brilliant Dam and of the community of Castlegar.
On our most recent venture on the trail it was a hot and sunny day. The skies were clear, the air was humid and you could see for miles. The conditions were ripe for sweating – and we did that real well on this day – and for photography.
Located along the route are 3 viewpoints. Each providing a different glimpse of the surrounding terrain. The highest viewpoint is at an elevation of 915 metres.
One can spend a whole day on the trails in the area as the Brilliant Overlook Trail connects to other hiking destinations including the Skattebo Reach Trail and the McPhee Creek Trails.
In fact … part of the Brilliant Overlook Trail follows along a 2 kilometre stretch of the Skattebo Reach Trail. Along the Skattebo Reach Trail is a junction which identifies the start of the BOT.
The BOT is a single track trail which travels uphill for 2.5 kilometres, navigating switchbacks, crossing rock slides and walking along cliff ridges. Along the hiking route are resting benches, hand rope rails and cliff side foot bridges.
The BOT is a 4-5 hour return trip. On our last trip on the trail we had the whole mountain to ourselves. We did not meet a soul. It was a heavenly trip entertained with the constant hum of song birds singing us a tune. Once at the summit we sat back and absorbed the scenery for what seemed like hours.
Prepare well on this trip as the terrain includes loose rocks, exposed tree roots and sections exposed to the sun. Good hiking boots, a hat and plenty of water is a must.
For more information and photos go to our Kootenays region of EH Canada Travel Guide at : Kootenay, British Columbia, Canada