After a stop early in the morning at the Tunnels, we hit Hope for breakfast and fuel. We headed east on the Hope Princeton highway stopping briefly at the Hope Slide pullout. We stayed on #3 into Princeton and for a change of scenery took Princeton Summerland road across the same route as we had come on the KVR. It gravels out at Osprey Lake, until Faulder near Summerland. We headed south into Penticton once again and followed the GPS that the GS was sporting to Naramata road north to Chute lake road. I spotted blue and white KVR signs and did better with those than the GPS to hook up with the KVR up in the Vineyard area on the northeastern outskirts of Princeton. The view from up there is spectacular on a clear day, but be warned it really is a multi use trail, and I had to pull over (where I could) so that a native couple in a S-10 Chevy Blazer could go in the other direction. There is one small tunnel (that’s in all the brochures) not far from where you get on.
The tunnel in all the brochures. High above Kelowna on the east side.
Action shot for the BMW crowd, they will ride with others, just not too close.
We stopped a couple of times (and shut off the bikes) to let riders on horseback go by, and not freak out the horses. The next stop was at the Rock ovens, but we heeded the signs about rattlesnakes and didn’t poke around too much.
They tell it better than I could.
Watch out for rattle snakes, I'm not kidding.
Then the line runs up, switching back and climbing up to the Adra tunnel. Some douche bag set fire to the wooden shoring and the tunnel is now closed at both ends to all traffic. The stink of wet charred wood still hung heavy in the air and the lower entrance was very swampy. Not long before getting there I had gotten a fleeting glimpse of a Cougar as it disappeared off the trail. It was a fairly big cat by the size of its back end and tail.
Very cool idea, the camp was just behind this. I would have taken a bottle or 2 but didn't feel right about it without making a donation. The funds are for fixing the Adra tunnel that some A-hole burnt down. This is a good argument for the re-institution of chain gangs and hard labour.
lower entrance to the Adra tunnel, I wonder if the putz (that burnt it) is proud?!
Sign at the top of the short bypass
The KVR keeps climbing and then the rain started, getting heavier quickly. We stopped under some trees and donned the rain gear. The trail was easy going up to OK Mountain and the area of the big fire in 2003. The weather cleared briefly and we continued on towards Myra canyon hoping to at least get close to the park.
No other way to see Kelowna from this angle, awesome!
Ghosts of the past still haunt the forest here.
The Bellevue trestle, and the end of the line for us this trip.
We met a guy on an YZ 250 at the Park boundary and he did a bit of Recon for us. I noticed fresh bear tracks beside my bike while we waited, and removed our rain gear. When he returned he let us know that we would be at the first trestle very quickly and that the bypass was tough and that we would never get across the “raging river”. We thanked him for checking it out and carried on to the first trestle “Bellevue” and for us, the end of the line. We turned around and joined up with a logging road a few km. back that wound down the hill into Kelowna. We had done more of the KVR than we had even hoped to do. Although we might have gotten away with the trip through the Myra Canyon, we both felt that it wasn’t worth the consequences should we be caught or reported. Next time (when I have more time) I will camp near the park entrance and hike the Canyon. The whole experience was fantastic and I strongly recommend the KVR for a close to home adventure. Take a light as possible bike, don’t sport panniers, and go with another rider if possible. Do you need a GPS? No, unless you are really navigationally challenged. I would guess unless some money is thrown at maintaining the KVR right of way that the clock is ticking for many of the sections we rode. In another 5 to 10 years some areas will be impassable to all but hikers. It would be a shame to let such a historical and fascinating piece of our history crumble away into oblivion.
Please if you ride the KVR; respect the other users and the landowners adjacent to it. Sadly some of the locals (like the dirt bikers near Coalmont) take it for granted and the results are detrimental to all the rest of us.
If you do the trip I hope that this report will have you better prepared for the adventure. Cheers and Enjoy!
Lycan 1 (Lee)