With the new “official” bike trails in the Pineview-Ironmask Hills area, we have been recently hiking the single (bike) tracks in the off-season. Although we have hiked the old double tracks for about 35 years, Kamloops Mountain Bike Riders have been working on these single tracks and are now installing signs at trail junctions.
From the Lac le Jeune Frontage Road we followed the main access route, an old double track. We had come down Stubby in our last hike, but this time we went up the blue-rated trail to the top of Ironmask Hill. It was a day of frozen ground with a skiff of snow, slippery on this steep single track. From the top of the hill, we continued south to the junction with another double track, then we followed the steep black diamond Mine Trail down the hill, a total of 6.15 km.
Many downhill mountain trails are not great for hiking and the Mine Trail is both difficult and steep, for expert riders (and only for sure-footed hikers). It would be easier to go up this trail than to go down and only in dry conditions, watching for bikes coming down.
We did enjoy the Stubby Trail in both directions. It offers good views and winds its way on grass slopes. The double track is an easier uphill for hikers, though. Both routes offer nice views from the hilltops.
Perhaps we can add a few single track (hiking) trails to this network too. If not, we will continue to quietly hike these hills, especially in the shoulder season. We will return to snowshoe the trails mid-winter.