The Lower Rose Trails are a fine shoulder-season area for hiking. Because the slopes are open and mostly treeless, they dry off quickly and the sand-till surface does not easily become muddy. The access route is off Rose Hill Road just before the trailer park or alternately from the end of Orchard Drive or Parkhill Drive in Valleyview. There are many single and double track trails on the benchlands so hikers can just make up their own loop. On this hike, we chose to do a 6.3 km perimeter loop, which included an 185m vertical climb up to the higher bench.From the upper part of the benchlands the western side of the silt cliffs lay below us with Mt. Peter and Paul in the background. The sky was cloudy to start the morning hike.
The silt cliffs throughout the area from Rose Hill to Barnhartvale are the result of layers of sediments at the edge of and under a glacial lake at the end of a previous ice age. So close the the city, the area is frequented by coyote and deer, but hikers and mountain bikers also use these trails.
We hiked east over to the edge of the Owl Road dump, then north to the end of Orchard Drive, returning west along a good double track behind a row of Valleyview houses. The final leg is a bit confusing since there are two gullies to go around, but there is a good double track that does just that,. It heads south up the hill for a short distance, then drops into a gully and up the other side to complete the Lower Rose Loop.