A hike and a waterfall on the Trepanier Creek trail
It’s a long and winding hike along a beautiful trail in Trepanier Creek Regional Park near Peachland, but the views along the way are worth every step. The trail is 3.9 kilometres, from Peachland to a point near the Okanagan Connector.
There is parking at both ends, so we chose to begin our hike from the Okanagan Connector parking lot. The wide and well-maintained trail starts out beside the creek. The trail has plenty of shady sections, which we and the dogs enjoyed because it was a hot and sunny day when we did this hike.
For almost two and a half kilometres, the elevation changes are moderate. There are some short hills and descents, but nothing too challenging. The course follows the Trepanier Creek canyon and there are plenty of spectacular views along the way.
“As I was hiking down the steep trail, I kept thinking, this long descent is going to be one heck of a long and steep climb on the way back.”
The trail narrows and starts to become a bit more rugged, leading to a waterfall two-thirds of the way along the trail. This is a good place to stop for a rest and to get some pictures. Despite living within an hour of this trail, we had never heard of this waterfall. It was definitely a hidden gem and made the hike very special.
From the waterfall to Peachland, the trail descends noticeably for about a kilometre and a half. The trail ends at a school playground. A shopping centre with a grocery store is nearby for those who need to pick up a snack or a drink.
“A stop at the waterfall is worth every step of the hike. This is a place to stop, rest and unwind.”
The trail end was our halfway point. Because we parked at the other end, we turned around and began the 3.9 kilometre back along the same trail. The trek back begins with a kilometre and a half of climbing. The elevation at the trailhead in Peachland is 350 metres, while at the Okanagan Connector parking lot, it is 3,900 metres. Most of the climbing is from the Peachland trailhead to the waterfall.
When we do this hike next time, we will likely begin the hike from Peachland instead of from the Okanagan Connector so we can tackle the climb at the beginning of our hike. Starting with a climb is easier than facing a long uphill on the second half of the hike.
If you are looking for a shorter and easier hike, another option would be to start at the Okanagan Connector parking lot and use the waterfall as the turnaround point.
There is cellular service along much of this trail, but there are also some spots where service will cut out. There are also signs of a wildfire which devastated the area in 2012. However, while the charred trees remain, there are also signs of new growth as the forest is recovering from the fire damage.
“That was really long. I enjoyed the walk to Peachland, but coming back, that climb wore me out. Daddy had to carry me for the last kilometre and a half.”
Overall, and despite the climb from Peachland to the waterfall, we were impressed with this trail and with the amazing views along the way. The trail is maintained by the Central Okanagan Regional District and it has signage in both English and nsyilxcən, the Okanagan language.
We did this hike as part of a virtual adventure challenge hosted by Penticton-based Hoodoo Adventures. Along the way, we also had to look for specific checkpoints and photo opportunities. It was definitely a hidden gem for us and it’s a hike we’d like to do again.