Escape into Nature: A Guide to Okanagan's Multi-Day Hiking Trails and Natural Wonders

Hiking in the Okanagan is a must for any outdoor enthusiast. With its scenic mountain ranges, sparkling lakes and vast forests, the region offers a variety of trails for hikers of all levels. Whether you're looking for a leisurely walk or a multi-day adventure, you'll find what you're looking for in the Okanagan. Here are some of the best trails for overnight multi-day hikes.

High Trim Trail

Hiking the High Trim Trail is an immersive and challenging wilderness experience that offers a chance to escape into the heart of the Okanagan Mountains — is a unique opportunity to test one's physical and mental limits. The trail begins on Highway 33 near Kelowna, British Columbia and winds its way through 58.1 km of rugged terrain, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains, lakes, and forests.

The trail is not well-marked and offers a variety of challenges, including steep inclines, rocky sections, and technical descents. Despite these challenges, the rewards are well worth it, as hikers are treated to a couple amazing panoramic views. Notably at the Grand View with views of Kelowna, and at the Oyama Repeater with views of Vernon and Kalamalka Lake.

Along the way, there are a couple designated campsites where hikers can rest and recharge before continuing their journey. As they hike, they will experience the sounds and sights of the wilderness, and may even see wildlife, such as bears, deer, and other animals. Camping and fires are not permitted when passing through the Wrinkly Face section of the park.

Okanagan Mountain Park

This circular trail is approximately 44 km long and takes you through diverse landscapes, including lush forests, what feels like alpine meadows and pristine lakes. This trail is perfect for those looking for a challenging multi-day hike with plenty of scenic beauty. There are numerous backcountry camping sites to choose from, so it is easier for trekkers to plan their own adventure. Just be aware that two of these require descending quite far back down to the lake, and will require a hike back up the following morning.

Due to the high elevation of the circuit, this trail is only best done after mid June to avoid the snow. 

Divide Lake in Okanagan Mountain Park is also a great spot for fishing. The lake is surrounded by stunning scenery and is home to an annually stocked rainbow trout supply. Nearby, the lesser visited, and also stocked, Norman and Baker lakes.

In the past, the area was impacted by the big Okanagan fire, which occurred in the early 2000s. Despite the destruction, the area has since regrown and is now a thriving ecosystem.


Notably, watch out for rattlesnakes who enjoy sunbathing on the warm open trails. And, prepare for scarce water supply in the later summer and fall months, regardless if the streams appear on a map.

The Fur Brigade to Eneas Ridge Trail

This trail is a scenic hike that takes you from Summerland to Peachland along an historic trail used by fur traders in the 19th century. This trail is a mere  13 km long and offers breathtaking views of Okanagan Lake and the surrounding mountains. It can technically be done as a multi-day hike. And always, it requires proper planning, as well as camping gear, food, and water. Hikers should expect to spend anywhere from 1.5-2 days on the trail, depending on their pace. Along the way, you will encounter rolling hills, forests, and alpine meadows, and may even see wildlife such as deer, bears, and mountain goats. To ensure a safe and enjoyable experience, it is important to be prepared for various weather conditions and to follow Leave No Trace principles.

Dangerous Animals

When it comes to safety while hiking in the Okanagan, it's important to be prepared. Here are a few things to keep in mind

  • Black bears are common in the Okanagan region, and hikers should take precautions to avoid attracting their attention. This includes storing food in bear-proof containers, making noise while hiking, and carrying bear spray. If a hiker encounters a black bear, they should stand their ground, make themselves look as large as possible, and use their bear spray if necessary. 

  • Mountain lions: Although rare, mountain lions can be found in the Okanagan region. Hikers should take precautions to avoid surprising a mountain lion and should make noise while hiking to alert the animal to their presence. If a hiker encounters a mountain lion, they should make themselves look as large as possible, and should never run or turn their back on the animal.

  • Raccoons: Raccoons are common in the Okanagan region, and are known for their thievery. Hikers should store their food and toiletries in bear-proof containers to avoid attracting raccoons to their campsite.

  • Mosquitoes: Mosquitoes can be a nuisance in the Okanagan region, especially during the summer months. Hikers should bring insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants to reduce the risk of being bitten.

  • Tick Safety: Ticks are common in the Okanagan, especially in the spring and summer months. Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved shirts and pants and tuck your pants into your socks to prevent ticks from getting to your skin. If you do find a tick on your skin, remove it with tweezers as soon as possible and clean the area with soap and water. If you experience any symptoms such as a rash or fever, seek medical attention.

Additional Concerns

  • Forest Fires: The Okanagan can be prone to forest fires in the summer months. Stay informed about any fire bans and keep an eye out for smoke. If you do come across a fire, report it immediately to the authorities.

  • Campfire Safety: Campfires are only permitted in designated areas in dry climates such as the Okanagan. Make sure to follow the fire regulations and always keep a shovel and bucket of water nearby.

Hiking Etiquette

  • Leave No Trace: Always follow Leave No Trace principles and pack out all of your trash, including food scraps, to minimize your impact on the environment.

  • Yield the Trail: When hiking in groups, always allow faster hikers to pass and always yield the trail to horses and pack animals.

  • Respect Wildlife: Observe wildlife from a distance and never feed or approach them, as this can cause harm to both the animals and yourself.

  • Be Considerate of Others: Keep noise levels down, especially when camping near others, and be mindful of other hikers' privacy.

  • Stick to the Trail: Stay on designated trails to prevent damage to sensitive areas and reduce your risk of getting lost.

  • Group Size: Keep group sizes small, as larger groups can have a greater impact on the environment and create a less enjoyable experience for other hikers.

  • Campfire Safety: Follow campfire safety guidelines, only build fires in designated areas, and be mindful of fire restrictions during dry periods.

  • Respect Private Property: Stay on public land and respect private property by not camping or hiking on it without permission.

  • Keep Your Dog Leashed: Keep your dog leashed and under control at all times to protect wildlife and other hikers.

In conclusion, the Okanagan offers a wealth of opportunities for multi-day hikes and overnight trips. With its stunning scenery and diverse landscapes, it's no wonder that the region is a popular destination for hikers. Whether you're an experienced backpacker or a beginner, you're sure to find a trail that suits your level of experience and offers a unique and memorable experience.

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