Visit Monashee Provincial Park
In addition to protecting substantial groves of old-growth cedar, spruce, and hemlock, Monashee Provincial Park also protects critical habitat for three red-listed species— Mountain Caribou, wolverines, and the Northern Goshawk. The area is also home to moose, mule deer, mountain goat, marten, cougar, black bear, blue-listed grizzly bear, and Townsend’s big-eared bats.
Rainbow Falls: Fed by Spectrum Lake, the spectacular Rainbow Falls, is located roughly halfway between Sugar Lake and the main Monashee Provincial Park trailhead. These falls are a sight to behold year-round.
Spectrum Lake: By far the most popular lake in the Monashee’s, the emerald green Spectrum Lake, makes an excellent beginner backpack or day hike. In addition to gorgeous mountain views, Spectrum Lake offers camping, group camping, swimming, and rainbow trout fishing opportunities.
Mount Fosthall: Though we haven’t personally summited Mount Fosthall (yet), it can be done. Route-finding skills are required. Both Mount Fosthall and Slate Mountain offer climbing/scrambling opportunities. If you make it to the top, the views are endless!
Peters & Margie Lakes: If you’re looking for solitude in a stunning backcountry setting, and you’re willing to work for it, the trail to Little Peters, Big Peters, and Margie Lakes is well worth the climb. Camping is available at all three lakes.
trails & camping
Rainbow Falls: Accessed via the Rainbow Falls trailhead on route to the main trailhead, this easy 750 meter (0.46 mile) one-way hike follows a well-maintained trail through old-growth trees to two viewing platforms at the bottom of Rainbow Falls.
Spectrum Lake: This easy 6 kms (3.73 miles) one-way trail leaves the trailhead and gains 441 meters (1,447 ft) as it meanders through a mixed forest of Douglas fir, lodgepole, birch, cedar, and hemlock. The trail is well-maintained, and boardwalks and bridges have been built over streams and wet areas. Spectrum Lake campground has a ranger cabin, 16 tent pads with fire rings, picnic tables, and covered shelters, 6 group sites with a large sheltered eating area, numerous outhouses, and a bear cache pole.
Little Peters Lake: This difficult but well-marked 6.5 kms (4 miles) one-way trail leaves Spectrum Lake and gains 762 meters (2,500 feet) as it climbs rapidly (read: relentlessly) through the forest and across brushy avalanche chutes as it makes its way into the sub-alpine. Little Peters Lake has 2 tent pads, a bear cache, and an alfresco pit toilet.
Big Peters Lake: This moderate 2.5 kms (1.55 miles) one-way trail leaves Little Peters Lake and undulates through forest and long alpine meadows as it makes its way towards the far end of the lake. Big Peters Lake has 10 tent pads, a food cache box, a bear pole, and a pit toilet. Big Peters makes a good staging area for exploring Mount Fosthall, Margie Lake, Fawn Lake, or the Valley of the Moon.
Margie Lake: This easy alpine route is 5 kms ( 3.1 miles) one-way from Big Peters Lake. Map reading/compass skills are an asset. There is a small campsite at Margie Lake with 2 tent pads, a bear cache pole, and a pit toilet.
Fawn Lake: This moderate alpine route is 4 kms ( 2.5 miles) one-way from Big Peters Lake. Map reading/compass skills are an asset. The Valley of the Moon lies beyond Fawn Lake.
Mount Fosthall: This challenging alpine route is 5 km (3.1 miles) from Big Peters Lake. It gains 1,000 meters in elevation (3,281 feet.) Technical equipment may be required, and map/compass skills are highly recommended.
**Distances & elevations may vary from those given. Always check for updated trail information and weather conditions before going. Backcountry camping fees may apply. Pack it in, pack it out!**
Climbing: Mount Fosthall and Slate Mountain offer climbing/ scrambling opportunities.
Fishing: Fishing, with license, for rainbow trout is possible at Spectrum, Big Peters Lake, and Little Peters Lake.
Horseback Riding: Horseback riding is permitted within the park.
Wildlife Viewing: Lucky visitors may get a glimpse of the rare mountain caribou, wolverine, or Northern Goshawk. The area is also home to moose, mule deer, mountain goat, marten, cougar, black bear, blue-listed grizzly bear, and Townsend’s big-eared bats.
Monashee Provincial Park is located 111 kms (69 miles) north of Vernon, British Columbia. From Vernon, take Highway 6 East for 47 kms (29 miles) through Lumby to Cherryville. At Cherryville, turn North (left) onto Sugar Lake Road and continue 46 kms (28.5 miles) to Spectrum Creek Road (kilometer marker 22.) Turn right and continue 1.2 kms (0.8 miles), over the bridge. Directly after the bridge, turn right to stay on Spectrum Creek Road.
Rainbow Falls: If you are stopping at Rainbow Falls, follow Spectrum Creek Road for 4 kms (2.5 miles) to a left turn at the “Rainbow Creek Falls” sign. Continue on this road to the parking lot.
Lakes: Continue on Spectrum Creek Road for 16 kms (10 miles) to the park entrance and main trailhead parking.