Blue Grouse Mountain

March 20, 2019


Kelowna, BC

Blue Grouse Mountain is one of the several “major summits” immediately next to the town of Kelowna in the interior of British Columbia. This area is not known for rugged mountainous landscape but rather the immense Okanagan Lake and the sunnier weather. I decided to hike up Blue Grouse Mtn. on the second day of this past spring break vacation. The standard route follows a communication tower road all the way to the top and the access is from Bear Creek FSR. I slept in my truck in the middle of a McDonalds’ parking lot and had a warm breakfast before making the drive to the west side of Okanagan Lake. The 4 km of driving on Bear Creek FSR was in excellent conditions and I parked at the desired spot without an issue. In fact I could have driven partway up the spur road but decided to not risk it.

Blue Grouse Mountain hiking route. GPX DL

I carried snowshoes but ended up not needing them. This road is fairly heavily travelled by 4×4 and snowmobile enthusiasts but not coming from the local areas I had little idea. Without the snowmobile traffic I would definitely need snowshoes that’s for sure. There was some intermittent views on the lower half of the hike, but the upper sections were heavily wooded. The summit had some nice views as expected. Other than the basic statistics: ~6 km distance with over 600 m elevation gain there isn’t much to add.

View from the start of Bear Creek FSR in the crispy morning

The awakening town of Kelowna

Morning light on Mt. Hayman

Oh the plod. This is the start of it. Frozen muddy in the morning

After a long while the forest thickens and I hit snow

Same as above. The average view from the plod…

There are a few really nice viewpoints along the way.

This is looking at West Kelowna and Okanagan Lake

Upwards and onward. Just put one foot in front of another.

Okanagan Mountain in the background; Mt. Boucherie in front in foreground

Summit Panorama from Blue Grouse Mountain. Click to view large size.

This is looking north towards Ellison Ridge

Looking east directly across Okanagan Lake

Me doing some Instagram photos…

Me on the summit of Blue Grouse Mountain

Another photo of me on the summit of Blue Grouse Mountain.

I lingered for at least an hour on the summit before leisurely making my way down. The hike down was fast and fluent and I made no stop. It was not even noon when I got back to the truck.

Mt. Knox (commonly known as Knox Mountain) in the foreground.

Hiking down passing this huge pile of talus

The road became very muddy as the temperature rose.

Since there’s so much time to kill I decided to hike up Mt. Boucherie to see more of the area.