Mother Nature did an excellent job in designing British Columbia. She placed wine country smack dab in the middle of southern BC so that after all your adventurous roughhousing in the mountains, you can dabble in a bit of guilty-free grape juice before you head straight back out to the mountains for some more tomfoolery.
Now, we are not the kind of people that would question nature’s plan. So we went right along with it, rolled around in the snow some in Vancouver, drank some wine in the Okanagan Valley and then headed right back out to the BC Rockies to hike up some mountains. Next up on our list was the Kootenay Rockies region.
I’ve got to say, this is one of the many underrated must-do places in Canada. An entire month in this region and you will still be left wanting for more. For one, it doesn’t attract the kind of crowds its close cousins, the Canadian Rockies, do. This means, you don’t need to share the most spectacular lookout spots and best of all, these places are significantly more cost effective.
The Kootenay Rockies region is also the land of oh-so-many ski resorts, calling for the perfect little ski towns that moonlight as backpacker filled party places.
Here, we lazed around by the lake in Revelstoke, snapped some pictures in Kaslo, found our happy place at Ainsworth Hot Springs, and hiked up a mountain to see Nelson in all its glory.
The decision is made, if we ever decide to settle down, the Kootenay Rockies are one of the top contenders on our list!
Must-sees in the Kootenay Rockies:
- Mount Revelstoke National Park: This park is great for hiking, wildlife viewing, backcountry camping, you name it. When we went, a good chunk of the park was closed off due to snow. So check ahead before you venture out.
- The hot springs: This area is full of hot springs, your plain old run of the mill hot springs as well as backcountry hot springs. We went to Ainsworth Hot Springs after a day of exploring Kaslo and it was worth every penny!
- Flagpole hike in Nelson: This hike will take you way up above Nelson and will give you glorious views of the Kootenay Rockies. Even though the hike is well trafficked, make sure you carry bear spray!