Location of Trailhead: Approximately 37 kilometers North of
Kamloops via Highway 5, Old Highway 5, Tod Mountain Road, and
Heffley-Louis Creek Road.
views, fairly easy trail, shade in the forest, no bugs.
Of Note: There are numerous intersecting
trails on Embleton Mountain, making it a somewhat confusing hiking
environment. The actual lookout is overgrown. A good lake view area has
very steep unbarricaded drop-offs. Cows may be present in the area.
Hiking boots and poles are recommended.
Embleton Mountain is located close to Kamloops, and its trailhead is
found by the road leading to Sun Peaks Resort, across Heffley Lake
Recreation Area. There are many intersecting trails on Embleton
Mountain, and the overall goal is to keep to the left while climbing
higher, until you reach a lookout. Alas, the designated lookout is
grossly overgrown, though it does feature a gazebo and two picnic
tables. However, there are at least three "undesignated" lookouts nearby,
one better than the other, providing very fine views of Heffley Lake and
the surrounding area. Due to the overabundance of intersecting trails,
it is not possible to give turn-to-turn directions to those lookouts.
This is where a GPS with Backroad Mapbook software might prove quite
handy. We will indicate GPS coordinates for those good lookouts, and,
hopefully, you will be able to find them and get to enjoy very fine
views. Embleton Mountain hike is easy-to-moderately challenging most of
the time. That said, closer to the best lookout, the trail gets quite
steep, and you would be glad to have hiking boots and poles, especially
on the way down.
1. We are on Northbound on BC Highway 5, just over 18 km past a Husky
gas station by Paul Lake Rd on the Northern edge of
Kamloops, getting ready to turn right onto Old Highway 5. A sign
indicates that Sun Peaks resort is that way too.
BC Highway 5 North at Old Highway 5 Turnoff near Kamloops
2. Having turned to the right, almost immediately (several hundred
meters later) turn to the left in front of Heffley Creek Store and another
Husky gas station onto Tod Mountain Road. The sign, again, indicates
that this would lead you to Sun Peaks resort.
Old Highway 5 at Tod Mountain Road Turnoff near Kamloops BC Canada
3. Now on Tod Mountain Road. It would become Heffley-Louis Creek Road in
a few kilometers. We would not reach Sun Peaks resort, which is 32
kilometers from here - Embleton
Mountain trailhead is only 18 kilometers further (about 37
kilometers from Kamloops).
Tod Mountain Road by Kamloops British Columbia Canada
4. Once you reach Heffley Lake Recreation Area pictured below, get ready
- Embleton Mountain trailhead is 300 meters later on the left side.
Heffley Lake Recreation Area Entrance on Heffley-Louis Creek Road near
5. And here is the turnoff from Heffley-Louis Creek Rd onto Embleton
Heffley-Louis Creek Road near Embleton Mountain Trailhead
6. Looking at the trailhead from the road. There is limited parking
available by the road. But, if you drive straight onto Embleton Mountain
Road, which is rather rough, there is plenty of parking a few hundred
meters further on. Coordinates for the trailhead:
N 50⁰50.333' W 120⁰02.298'. Elevation: 968 meters.
Embleton Mountain Trailhead near Kamloops BC
7. There is a big information stand seen in the photo above. However,
it's quite worn out, and its much better version is at that Embleton
Mountain parking area (P2). You get to learn that the mountain was named
after Tony Embleton, who helped to develop a network of trails on the
mountain. There used to be a portable sawmill operating on Embleton
Mountain, so the trails are the combination of the roads used by the
sawmill, and developed hiking trails.
Embleton Mountain Information Stand near Kamloops British Columbia
8. So, here is a close-up of the Embleton Mountain trails map. As you can
see, quite a network. We've indicated with a red arrow the trailhead seen
in photo #6. The white square shows another trailhead off Heffley-Louis
Creek Road, but we did not see it, so who knows if it's still there. The
yellow square shows where the official lookout (the overgrown one) is
located. So, yeah, climb up and keep to the left, and good things just
might happen on this hike.
Kamloops Hiking - Embleton Mountain Trails Map
9. Proceeding from the parking area.
Hiking in Kamloops Area - Embleton Mountain
10. A few cows were grazing nearby. Watch your step.
Cows on Embleton Mountain near Kamloops British Columbia
11. There are trail arrows here and there, and maps of the trail network
are posted at key intersections.
Embleton Mountain - Kamloops Hiking
12. A neat footbridge on Embleton Mountain.
Embleton Mountain Hike in Kamloops BC Canada Area
13. This hike would be especially good to take when Kamloops is having
one of those 30+ degrees days. Shade is in abundance on Embleton
Kamloops Trail - Embleton Mountain Trail
14. Also in abundance is barbed wire fencing. Probably, to keep cows from
falling off the mountain.
Hiking in BC - Embleton Mountain Trails Near Kamloops
15. At some point, there is this stone-hopping area.
Hiking in British Columbia - Embleton Mountain Trails by Kamloops
16. And here is how you go across the barbed wire fence at this location. Most other places have a neat ladder leading over the fence.
Hiking in Kamloops Area - Embleton Mountain Trail
17. The trail after the fence. The first good viewpoint will appear
Embleton Mountain Hiking - Kamloops Hike BC Canada
18. And here is the first viewpoint. That's Heffley Lake down there. Coordinates:
N 50⁰50.726' W 120⁰03.408'. Elevation: 1,275 meters. There is a bench
located by this viewpoint. It took us about 1.5 hours of hiking to get
to this point, and our travelled distance was close to 4 kilometers.
Your mileage and timing may vary, depending on which trails you take to
Heffley Lake View from Embleton Mountain - Kamloops Hiking
19. A bit further, there is this split. Go to the left to reach the
second viewpoint. Coordinates for the split:
N 50⁰50.799' W 120⁰03.607'. Elevation: 1,295 meters. Also, this is where a
most wonderful thing took place. While trying to figure out which way to
go, we heard a very loud buzzing noise within a meter or so to our
right. We thought it was a giant wasp, turned to look, and there, at our
eye level, suspended in mid-air while flapping its wings, was a grey
hummingbird staring at us. It did not wait for its picture to be taken,
and took off.
Embleton Mountain - Hiking in British Columbia near Kamloops
20. Here is the second viewpoint, located several hundred meters from
the split pictured above. Coordinates: N
50⁰50.751' W 120⁰03.618'. Elevation: 1,299 meters. There is a picnic table
located by this viewpoint.
Picnic Table on Embleton Mountain near Kamloops BC
22. The view from the second viewpoint is very good, though not as
panoramic as from the third and best viewpoint. However, reaching the
third viewpoint requires tackling the steepest part of the trail, so the
second viewpoint might be a good final destination.
Heffley Lake near Kamloops BC Canada
22. Now, the real uphill hiking begins. It's short, but challenging, and
is much steeper than it looks in the photo below.
Kamloops BC Hiking - Embleton Mountain
23. This might be a better representation of how steep this part of
Embleton Mountain is. We are looking to the left here.
Hiking on Embleton Mountain near Kamloops BC
24-26. You reward is a very fine panoramic view of Heffley Lake and the
surrounding area. Some road noise is present, just like at the first two
viewpoints. Coordinates: N 50⁰50.920'
W 120⁰03.716'. Elevation: 1,395 meters. We hiked for about 5 kilometers
in 2 hours and 15 minutes to get here.
Kamloops Hiking - View from Embleton Mountain
27. A panorama of the place.
Here is Our Video of the views from Embleton
DANGEROUS AREA. Beware of steep unbarricaded drop-offs
while admiring Heffley Lake from this viewpoint.
Steep drop-off at Embleton Mountain near Kamloops BC Canada
29. We then proceeded to the official lookout, hoping for an even better
Embleton Mountain Hiking in Kamloops Area
30. We have reached the lookout shortly. There was a gazebo and two
picnic tables present. Coordinates: N
50⁰51.150' W 120⁰03.955'. Elevation: 1,444 meters (476 meters elevation
gain from the trailhead).
Gazebo and picnic tables at the official Embleton Mountain Lookout
31. But the viewpoint was badly overgrown.
Overgrown Viewpoint on Embleton Mountain near Kamloops BC Canada
Embleton Mountain hiking trails are fairly easy, and lead to several
very impressive views of Heffley Lake and the surrounding area. Just
watch out for those drop-offs. Highly recommended.