This is a very pleasant trail located at the west side of the valley north of Highway 3 on Mt. Midgeley with views of the Creston Valley for much of the way. There has been a trail here for many years to a trapper’s cabin originally built in the 1980s. It is now owned by the Ministry of Forests and the Trails for Creston Valley Society is granted permission to use it. The cabin can be booked via the webpage https://www.crestonvalleytrails.ca/midgeley-cabin.
There is a licensed trapping line in the vicinity of the cabin so no other hunting is allowed in the area. Motorized vehicles being used for hunting purposes are not allowed past 12.5 km on Topaz road.
Hiking to the Summit
Day hikes to the summit of Mt. Midgeley can be easily accomplished using the cabin as a base camp. The route to the summit (2150M) has not been cleared yet but is a fairly obvious bushwack to the left (south side) of the Mt. Midgeley Ridge which is clearly visible from the cabin and once on the ridge it is an open walk to the peak which has views of Kootenay Lake and almost as far as Bonners Ferry.
How to Get to the Trail
To get to the trail head, a 4 wheel drive is strongly recommended. It is about an hour’s drive from Creston. Travel west from Creston on Highway 3 and after going over the Summit Creek Bridge turn right at the first road which is immediately after the bridge. Put your truck or car into 4 wheel drive and head up the logging road. Stay on the main logging road and do not turn off until 3 km. At 3 km turn left onto Topaz Forest Service Road. This is an active logging road so use Huscroft Channel if you have it in your truck or drive with caution as logging trucks may be coming down. Drive up the Topaz Creek Logging Road and at 8 ½ KM where the road forks keep right. At approximately 9 KM where the road forks again go left. Stay on road until 12 ½ KM where you pass Spur 4. Go about 50 m further and the road splits again. Take the right fork which is marked Mid Topaz. Stay on this road until 16 km where you will see pink ribbons on either side of the road. This is where the trail starts.
You can drive about 100 m further and there is an old landing which is a good place to park your vehicle. Please note that current Google Maps satellite imagery is out of date and does not accurately show recent logging or the trailhead parking area.
When you start the trail you will be walking through an old clear cut and the trail is flagged but not actually built. It is only about 75 M until you reach the real trail which has a very comfortable grade with views of the valley. This trail and the land adjacent is crown land and is clear the whole way.
The trail into the cabin usually becomes snow-free in early July and autumn snows may begin in October. Late fall is a nice time to visit with alpine larch trees turning golden and biting insects becoming less bothersome.
Please note that access to Midgeley Lake is not available from this trail as the lake is located on private property (Nature Conservancy of Canada; please refer to their website for permission to enter Darkwoods lands.)