Hedley Creek

Photo: Hedley Creek
Photo by Janis Wright

Vermilion Forks Field Naturalists enjoyed an easy hike along the Hedley Creek trail on Saturday morning, August 8th – a perfect outing for a hot summer day, as the trail is shaded and cool. Hedley Creek, aka Twenty Mile Creek, runs between rock walls of a box canyon, and flows south into the Similkameen. Years ago the creek was dammed by mining companies to provide water for a reduction mill, and subsequently domestic water was supplied through wood stave pipes, remnants of which are still evident below the trail. Four wooden plank bridges existed at one time, as well, to allow access further up the creek, but all crossings and the dam have since been destroyed by spring floods. Fifteen of us, led by Margaret Hale, walked along a footpath paralleling the creek until we reached the first bridge washout area. The bridge still lies relatively intact, but positioned on the opposite bank. This turnaround spot makes a great place to sit and rest, enjoy a snack and the spectacular scenery before heading back. The rock formations of the canyon and lush foliage along the water make for a unique and lovely landscape – cedars, willows, ferns and Oregon grape are abundant. Our 2 ½ hour hike ended with lunch at Hedley’s Hitching Post, a treat any day of the week!