Trail Name: Skoatl Point
Distance: 10.3 km
Time: 3+ hours
Cell Service: No
Trail Conditions: Single track through the forrest, followed by a scramble up a volcanic plug.
Highlights: Amazing 360 degree views and a scramble up a very unique geological formation.
To get there: The trailhead is a good 2 hour drive from downtown and you must have a vehicle with good ground clearance to make it to the trailhead. From the North Shore, take 8th street all the way out to where it turns into Westsyde rd. Continue on Westsyde rd for about 20 kms before turning left on Jamieson Creek FSR. Continue for about 30km until you pass Whitewood lake. You’ll see a large piece of heavy machinery at a fork, take the left towards Windy Lake. You’ll come to one more fork just past the Windy lake rec site (about another 9km in). Keep to the right. You’ll reach the trailhead shortly. Or see it on Google here. (These are the best directions to get here!)
The trail head is clearly marked with a BC Parks sign. The trail is linear. In the early summer, the area is often swampy, wet, and full of mosquitos. We recommend doing the hike in late summer or early fall. The trail is not heavily used, but it is still easy to follow. When you approach Skoatl point, you’ll want to follow the trail around to the right of the rock formation. There’s some flagging tape to help guide you across the rock slides. There were many fallen trees the last time we were up there, making this route a bit harder as you try to manoeuvre around them. Continue around the perimeter until the trail leads you to the rock face. Here’s where it gets interesting. The trail disappears and you must choose your own route up the side of the volcanic plug. BE CAREFUL! At the top you get a 360 degree view of the surrounding lakes.
The trail to the base of the plug is suitable for anyone however, the scramble up to the top of Skoatl is difficult and steep. Some may decide to turn around at the base. Our medium sized dog was not able to do the scramble and she is too big to carry. Smaller, more portable dogs, could be carried to the top. You might also consider bringing a lunch as it’s a long drive and a long hike. There are two rec sites along the road you came in on that are lovely spots for lunch. The area is also known for bears so bring bear spray and hike in groups.
If you have time, check out Jamieson Creek Falls! This short hike is along the same road as Skoatl Point and brings you to a beautiful waterfall.