You need not be a die-hard hiker to enjoy hiking at Predator Ridge (although it helps!). In our blissful corner of the Okanagan you can find over 35km of beautifully-maintained multi-use trails, with a number of options for all levels of difficulty. Whether you’re planning a day hike as a visitor or are a resident of the Predator Ridge Resort community, here’s (almost) everything you need to know about hiking the Okanagan’s scenic Predator Ridge.
IT’S A FAMILY AFFAIR
With facilities for picnics, multiple lookout points, and a seriously blissed-out yoga platform, Predator Ridge offers many opportunities for family-friendly hiking. Even better, all trails are pet-friendly; providing that your four-legged family members remain on a leash.
The Deer Trail (hiking trail only).
0.8 km. Easy.
A stone’s throw from the Sparkling Hill Health & Wellness Resort, this easy 0.8 km trail winds its way below the impressive resort. Passing through some lovely forested areas, hikers will have the chance to enjoy Instagram-worthy views of Okanagan Lake. The trail is well-marked and hikers will gain access from a parking lot located between the Sparkling Hill Resort and Birdie Lake.
Sparkling Loop Trail (hiking trail only).
1.2 km. Easy.
A sister hike to the Deer Trail, the 1.2 km Sparkling Loop Trail is aptly named. Circling the Sparkling Hill Resort, hikers will find a lookout point that acts as the perfect set piece for photos. A combination of gravel and asphalt, the trail offers panoramic views of the Predator Ridge Golf Course, Sparkling Hill Resort, Terrace Mountain and Okanagan Lake. The trail is easy to follow and hikers may gain access from the same parking lot as the Deer Trail.
Birdie Lake Loop (multi-use trail).
1 km. Easy.
An easy, 1 km trail, the Birdie Lake Loop takes its name from the small, serene body of water it circles. Fringed with golden fronds, the lake is a well-known spot for a number of different bird species who stop here on their spring migration routes. Equipped with a lovely observation platform, hikers can soak in the views which, on a lucky day, may include a visit from a local deer or some of the Red Painted Turtles who call Birdie Lake home. The trail is clearly defined and hikers will find access from Birdie Lake Drive.
For those who are looking for a longer or more challenging hiking experience, the following trails offer hikes of 2.5 km or more in distance. Levels of difficulty are intermediate to difficult and connector trails provide an opportunity to extend your hike or alter your route to suit the day’s mood.
Okanagan Lake Lookout Loop (hiking trail only).
3 km. Difficult.
This strenuous 3 km hiking trail connects with Birdie Lake Loop and runs slightly southwest of the Sparkling Hill Health & Wellness resort. Trek your way through some lovely forested areas and steep sections that reward you with breathtaking views of the Okanagan Lake and Terrace Mountain. The trail, much of which is an old logging road, is well-maintained and marked. Access is gained from a parking lot at the base of Sparkling Pond.
Granite Trail (multi-use trail).
4.1 km. Difficult.
This challenging 4.1 km multi-use trail is fit for both hikers and cyclists. Snaking down towards Ellison Provincial Park and the infamous Blister Sister trail, the Granite Trail has some rather steep sections and the first half of the trail twists and turns before petering out into a fairly straightforward path forward. Equipped with a yoga platform and a beautiful poplar grove, hikers brave enough to trek up the inclines will take in expansive lake views. A well-maintained trail with adequate signage, access is from the parking lot at the base of Sparkling Pond.
Ridge Trail (multi-use trail).
3.5 km. Easy.
This lovely 3.5 km multi-use trail runs almost parallel to the Granite Trail and connects with both it as well as the Birdie Lake Loop and Ellison-Ridge Connector. Overlooking the Predator Ridge Golf Course, hikers will also take in views of the Okanagan Lake and Terrace Mountain. Stop to do a sun salutation on the yoga platform, or keep your eye on the prize by toughing it all the way down to the Blister Sister Trail in Ellison Provincial Park.
SAFETY & PRECAUTIONS:
The trail system at Predator Ridge is well-maintained with good signage. That said, it is always good to take basic precautions when hiking in areas where there is wildlife. Make sure someone knows your whereabouts at all times, bring an adequate supply of water and snacks, and always check the weather report before you go.