Hoodoo Creek is an interesting short hike in Yoho National Park, BC, Canada.
The Hoodoo Creek trail-head is about 6.5 KM (4.0 miles) east of the west gate into Yoho National Park, British Columbia, Canada. Total return distance for this hike is about 5.2 KM (3¼ miles) with an elevation gain of 340 m (1,115 ft) to a maximum elevation of 1,550 m (5,085 ft) at the Upper Viewpoint. Today this hike is accompanied by my son and daughter-in-law who are visiting from Markham east and north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
The hike begins on a flat, gravel road through the Hoodoo Creek Campground. After 0.8 KM (½ miles) a left turn at the clearly signed trail arrives at a wooden beam bridge over Hoodoo Creek within 100 m (91 yards). As my son captures a photo of us on the bridge, it brings a tear to my eye thinking nostalgically back to the time many years ago when he was taught how to stand in the middle of a creek to take a photo and still retain some small shred of personal dignity.
Although hiking through a mix of sun and shade, there is a large thunderstorm brewing nearby which is visually and audibly obvious. The trail gains altitude on switchbacks through typically lush B.C. forest with periodic views of the valley carved by the cascading, white water of Hoodoo Creek. Occasionally, hoodoos can be seen on the other side of the valley.
The Hoodoos Trail provides excellent views of the white, cascading waters of Hoodoo Creek in the valley beneath. The valley walls amplify the sound of falling water on its descent to the valley below. In some locations the light shining into dense, lush forest littered with dead fall creates artistic arrangements.
Near the top of a steep section close to the objective a 'Y' junction is encountered. Right leads to the Lower Viewpoint. At this time, after sustained ascent, a bit of descent seems attractive. The Upper Viewpoint will be visited second. The descent to the Lower Viewpoint is on sketchy trail to Hoodoo Creek. The spectacular images of the Hoodoos explode out of the hillside to the left, accompanied by the sound of rushing water at trail side, while the last few minutes of sunshine are enjoyed before a light rain begins.
The Hoodoos, from the Lower Viewpoint, present an impressive wall of fascinating form, enhanced by the fact they have been constructed by nature over thousands of years and remain in a perpetual state of slow-motion change.
The hike uphill, back to the 'Y' junction followed by the continuing ascent to the Upper Viewpoint seems a bit aggressive when considered against the alternative of making a more direct approach on the slope between Hoodoo Creek and the left edge of the Hoodoos. So, the scramble proceeds laterally up the firm-surface slope while remaining conscious of leaving no trace. A light rain begins.
The Upper Viewpoint provides an entirely different perspective with an up close and personal view of the rock and gravel elements. Hoodoo Creek is visible below.
There is steep, rustic trail along the top of the Hoodoos which provides a unique perspective looking down on the complex of stone caps protecting, or at least reducing, the gravel pillars from erosion by wind and rain.
The short period of light rain enjoyed while at the Upper Viewpoint moves on and the hike back to the car is very scenic and easy on consistent descent with the occasional fallen tree to climb over.
On a previous visit, the highlight hike was a rough and rugged traverse of Mount Allan from Dead Man's Flats to Ribbon Creek.
Accommodation for this trip have been made at the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort above Golden, British Columbia and transportation will occur in a new Dodge Journey, ideal for our initiative since there is a lot of gear and an emergency visit to the hospital in Revelstoke will be necessary. Stay tuned. It is a good week.
Photographs for this hike to Hoodoo Creek hoodoos were captured on Sunday, August 4, 2013.