Pictured above: our crew of floaters at intermission in front of Mt Fernie.
Fernie has had a cracking summer so far with temperatures this week getting up into the 30’s and Sunday forecast to get up to a whopping 38 degrees. Before I moved to Canada I’d heard of ridiculous temperatures (-30 during the winter) but this is even hot for an Aussie. So to take the edge off the heat the best idea I cold think of was to find a body of water, any type, and jump in. Cue waterfalls etc.
First on the list, Morrissey Falls. To get there you drive south on Highway 3 towards Cranbrook and after about 10 minutes turn left onto Morrissey road. The road continues past a bridge and around a small school until it turns into a dirt logging road, you follow this for a while until you get to the 24km post. There is a huge rock with graffiti on it and you can park here, the falls are then just a small walk continuing up the dirt road for about 5-10 minutes until it levels out. You can hear the falls getting closer as you walk up. (Below: Tim and Meagan cooling off at the falls)
Second, the watering hole off Coal Creek Rd. Last week after an epic day laying brick in 35 degree weather, our work crew decided to knock off half an hour early and head straight down for a swim. To get there we drove about 15 minutes up Coal Creek Rd until we reached a wooden bridge (we had crossed about 3 bridges previously and this one had new wood added to it) and then turned left straight away down a small dirt road that travels along the river. We parked after about 50m and walked down. The small watering hole with its tiered falls made a very picturesque spot to take a dip, much better than the average swimming pool.
Next was the ever classic river float down the Elk River right in the heart of Fernie. After a few purchases at Canadian Tire for some sea worthy vessels, we set off from the car park, drinks in tow and some retro tunes playing. It was about 33 degrees out so the initial discomfort from the freezing water was soon overcome with relaxed euphoria as we cruised down towards the Stanford hotel. The float took about an hour and a half with a little break in between, we all wished it had been longer 😀
Finally, this weekend with Sam and his crew visiting from Edmonton, we went out to the third lake at Silver Springs for some more inflatable water fun and a few drinks. The lake is only a 30-40 minute drive from Fernie, just near the town of Elko. Most people stop at the first lake after a short 10 minute hike, but with some persuasion and a bit of a slog, we hiked the extra 40 minutes to the third lake where we had it all to ourselves. The water was much warmer than the river and with the long days, we stayed out until 9pm enjoying some cliff jumping and great catch ups with the Desmond’s.