Stagleap Provincial Park is located approximately 37 km (23 miles)
east of Salmo
and 48 km (30 miles) west of Creston
on Hwy 3.
All-Weather Highway Pass in BC
The park is situated in the sub-alpine forest right at the summit
of Kootenay Pass, the highest all-weather highway in British Columbia.
At 1,774 metres (5,820 feet), this section of road crossing between
the East-to-West Kootenay mountains is one of the highest-paved
highways in Canada.
Besides all the beautiful mountain views around the park, there
is also a small lake located here called Bridal Lake. There are
a couple of walking trails near and around the lake called Cornice
Ridge loop and Bridal Lake Shore loop that both go between the two
ends of the lake. With the appropriate fishing license, Bridal Lake
also offers angling opportunities for Rainbow trout. Kayaking and
canoeing possibilities can also be found here.
Snowshoeing and Skiing
The backcountry snowshoeing and skiing found around Stagleap Provincial
Park is exceptional, making it a great destination point for those
who enjoy this sport. Remember: be prepared, heavily-experienced,
and well-informed for this type of wilderness situation, as it has
been known to be very dangerous.
Ripple Peak is the highest peak that is the most accessible from
Stagleap Pass Provincial Park. Ripple Mountain, at around 2,334
metres (7,658 feet), definitely has a steep north-east face while
the south side is gentle and makes for more of a good spring backcountry
ski or snowshoeing tour.
There is hiking and walking during the summer season in the same
area, especially on a popular walk called the Beargrass Trail. This
is a short alpine walk that is situated above Bridal Lake and offers
spectacular views of the southern Selkirk Mountains far beyond into
Washington and Idaho States.
Park facilities found at Stagleap are fairly limited but do include
a parking lot and large picnic area at the east end of Bridal Lake.
At the west side of the lake, there is a smaller parking lot, pit-toilet,
and a log structure that serves as a warming hut for cross-country
skiers in the winter, with a table present as well as a wood-burning
air-tight stove. There is no overnight camping allowed in the shelter,
nor is there any firewood available for use.
There is the potential for wildlife watching at Stagleap Provincial
Park. Mountain Cariboo migrate through here. A fairly sizeable herd
of Big Horn sheep also frequent the area between the feeding stations
10 km (6 miles) from Salmo and Stagleap. Watch for signs of Grizzly
Just remember if you are enjoying the provincial parks and the countryside
around British Columbia, please remember this is bear country. There
is also the possibilities of encounters with wolves or cougars so
please play it safe.
Because of snow loading and avalanche conditions, the highway can
be closed at certain times during the winter storm season, so be
prepared for any closures for Hwy 3 - check radio broadcasts for
conditions in the area, or look them up on DriveBC.com. If there
are any problems with road closures, there are alternate routes
to Creston or Salmo via the free ferry crossings at Balfour or Kootenay