Description:

The Batchelor Hills and Mount Mara stand north of Tranquille Road (and Ord Road in Brocklehurst).   There are a few single track trails that climb steeply up into Lac du Bois Grasslands Protected area, off Ord Road, but the main trails are Mara Canyon (sometimes called Cinnamon Ridge Trail or the Hoodoos Trail) and the Mara Hills.

Driving Directions:

Follow one of the main east-west roads through the North Shore to the airport, then continue along Tranquille Road past Kamloops Golf Course.   The trailheads are unsigned.

Trailheads:

  • The trailhead for Mara Canyon is a wide parking area on the right side of the road at N50 43.122 W120 28.155 (2.2 km past the golf course entrance).   Although the trail is mostly in Lac du Bois Grasslands Protected Area, it requires crossing the CP train tracks.   The trail is very popular and well-used, but it does mean crossing the tracks over CP Rail property.   This is unsafe when a train is approaching and, in addition, a number of hikers have been stranded on the other side of a parked train.   It is not recommended to cross the tracks here, although most hikers to the canyon choose this access route.
  • There is a safer crossing.   At a level crossing over the tracks one kilometer back, take the left fork and continue to the end of the old dirt road, parking in an old excavated area.   There are numerous old vehicles left along this road, but it is available for public access.
  • This is most popular trail in the area and over time, BC Parks, CP Rail, the City of Kamloops, and the adjacent property owner will need to find a resolution to the access issue.   In the meantime, please make safe choices.
  • The trail goes up, then splits into two main options.   The route that goes up the canyon climbs farther up the hill on a single track bearing north to N50 43.384 W120 28.452 before dropping into the canyon.   The route that goes right winds its way up the east side ridge.   It is sometimes used as the return route on a loop.
  • At the top of the east ridge a 3-way junction is met (at N50 43.961 W120 28.180) .   The track from the SSW is the canyon trail, the track that goes south is the ridge trail.  The track that bears north is a steep, loose scramble up to the summit of Mt. Mara.   The loop is route is about 4.5km.
  • The Mara Hills Trails start farther west.   Continue along Tranquille Road and pass the junction with Tranquille on the Lake, keeping right.    Cross the tracks and park on the right 220m ahead.
  • Mara Trail map (pdf)
  • The backroad that continues up through the lower grasslands can also be followed to get to places on Tranquille Canyon (like the Guardsmen), to Wheeler Mountain, or to Mara Mountain.   The high-clearance double track continues for 4.1 km through sagebrush and grasslands to a junction.
  • See the Google map as a reference for trailheads.

 

Mara Canyon 040brmaracanyon50b/dsmith

 


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