Lake Enid is an easy hike around a pristine gem west of Wilmer, British Columbia, Canada.
The early morning drive to Lake Enid begins from the Village of Radium Hot Springs and proceeds south 14 KM (8¾ miles) on Kootenay Highway 95 towards taking the Invermere exit downhill and across the railway bridge, to a right turn onto Panorama Drive. After crossing Toby Creek, signs provide direction for the 3.5 KM (2.2 mile) drive past the Kootenae House National Historic Site of Canada to the small, historic town of Wilmer, British Columbia, Canada. A right turn onto Main Avenue leads to a left turn onto Park Street which soon changes from paved to gravel road known as the Bruce Creek Forest Service Road. The wide, gravel road sweeps north, then west, past idyllic and incredibly peaceful Wilmer Lake before continuing carefully 5.7 KM (3½ miles) over twisting and possibly rugged but wide road with speed-reducing potholes to, a right turn at a Y junction providing access into the Lake Enid Campground at the recreation site about 500 m (¹⁄₃ mile) later. Following the short, rugged road past the campsites will lead to a small parking area near lakeshore near a small picnic area and dock. The obvious, signed trailhead begins to the left from the parking area.
Initial trail on this short, easy and relatively flat 2.4 KM (1½ mile) loop begins briefly through wetland and across a sturdy, wooden bridge to relatively dry and excellent trail on the clockwise route around Lake Enid. The aromatic trail provides a wide variety of forest feature and occasional views across the small but very pretty lake.
The forested trail along the west shoreline of Lake Enid breaks out into open ground along the north shore of the small lake where the tiny dock at trail beginning gauges progress. The sweep along the north side soon begins to tend south along the east shore where previously hidden features motivate continuance to new and unanticipated wilderness features including views west to the cloud-enshrouded, towering peaks of Mount Bruce and Mount Forster looming past the west shore of Lake Enid.
A picturesque peninsula provides outstanding views of the lake before backtracking around the marsh borders of a lake extension leads across a rustic but secure wooden bridge over inflow to the lake. The trail curls right past amazing marshland around the south shoreline. Protective fencing secures the integrity of the pristine wetlands that are alive with insects and birds within the vibrant and independent ecosystem. Wooden platforms and walkways are equipped with primitive benches which beg to support time taken by hikers and photographers for appreciation of the peaceful, overwhelming beauty within this standalone paradise.
Past the marsh, forest-surrounded, excellent quality trail provides intermittent views across Lake Enid from the south shoreline before the diverse hike ends back at the parking area.
Time following the hike around Lake Enid becomes available to pursue unique features along the return drive to Invermere on this perfect weather day.
At the north end of Wilmer Lake, an impressive property on the hillside above resides over a rustic granary leaning into it's age and presiding over many acres of groomed prairie.
The return drive sweeps south around the north shore of idyllic Wilmer Lake which is bordered by wetlands and teeming with life.
A short stop in Wilmer, British Columbia finds an impressive cairn at the Wilmer Community Centre composed of rocks recovered from cairns set by Conrad Kain on first summits around and beyond the Columbia Valley. Conrad Kain was the first guide hired by the Alpine Club of Canada and the Wilmer home Conrad and his wife Henriquita occupied is a short distance down the street from the Community Centre. Legends are preserved here.
This hike around Lake Enid is a leisurely experience through diverse terrain which will consume a half day for the average hiker and leave plenty of time to hike at the nearby spectacular Wilmer Wetlands north of historic Wilmer, British Columbia, Canada.
Photographs for this hike around Lake Enid were taken on Thursday, August 11, 2016.