Ket­tle Val­ley Rail Trail

Canadian Cycling Magazine - - FEATURE -

The once-aban­doned Ket­tle Val­ley Rail­way has been de­vel­oped into a multi-use trail that takes in some of the Okana­gan’s best scenery with few chal­leng­ing climbs. Much of this route main­tains rail­way grades that rarely ex­ceed 2.2 per cent, as cy­clists cross old tres­tle bridges, pass through tun­nels and en­joy stun­ning views across Okana­gan Lake.

“It’s beau­ti­ful and you don’t have to deal with cars,” says Matt Clarke, a cy­cling pho­tog­ra­pher based in Pen­tic­ton, B.C. “The scenery is just un­real: big lakes, vine­yards in all di­rec­tions and these stun­ning tres­tle bridges closer to Kelowna.”

The Ket­tle Val­ley Rail Trail of­fers 600 km of multi-use gravel paths, but the 342.2- km Mid­way-k el own aPen tic ton-mid­way takes in many high­lights in a three-to-five-day tour. Clarke also rec­om­mends two shorter out-and-back rides from Pen­tic­ton. “Rid­ing from Pen­tic­ton to Chute Lake (92 km re­turn) along the Ket­tle Val­ley Rail­way,” says Clarke, “is beau­ti­ful. It passes Lit­tle Tun­nel and has some of the best views in the Okana­gan. Or you can con­tinue onto Myra Canyon (160 km re­turn) to check out the fa­mous tres­tle bridges.”

Rid­ing is pos­si­ble nine to 10 months of the year. But, it’s one of Canada’s hottest sum­mer cli­mates. Cy­clists should start early and fin­ish their sum­mer rides long be­fore the heat of the af­ter­noon.

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