Cedar Lake is a recreational oasis above Golden, British Columbia, Canada.
The day following the challenging hike to Abbott Ridge will be dedicated to relative rest, relaxation and healing. The day will provide time to explore some of the locally popular, but lesser known features, near Golden, British Columbia.
About half way down the twisting, turning, paved road descending from the Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, with accommodation at Palliser Lodge, there is a clearly signed intersection leading to Cedar Lake.
Wide, paved road leads to narrow, interesting, gravel road into Cedar Lake through shared space with Moonraker Trails. The Cedar Lake Day Use Area is popular for hiking, fishing and canoeing and a beautiful, quiet place to enjoy a leisure day.
Cedar Lake is nestled in dense forest with tall mountains occasionally peaking over the top. Cloud reflecting on shallow, still water creates opportunity for artistic photographs.
The diving raft near shore line can be relocated to float in visibly deeper water for swimming and diving. Nearby marsh land chatters with the choral sounds of a wide variety of insect, avian and amphibian life.
To get from Golden to Cedar Lake, exit at the Trans Canada Highway and Highway 95 intersection, drive over the railroad overpass to Highway 95 and then turn left at the junction.
Take 9th Street N at the next left turn until it turns into Kicking Horse Drive. Continue west along the Kicking Horse River and cross carefully on the narrow single lane bridge over the Columbia River.
Drive on twisting, turning, paved road uphill for 7 km (4⅜ miles) to the Cedar Lake Forest Service Road. Two km (1¼ miles) further, on narrow and interesting gravel road, leads to the clearly signed Cedar Lake Day Use Area and the Moonraker Trail-head.
The tiny, 10-site, wilderness campground, without water or electricity, is ideal for tents or small campers. The campground is open May 1 to September 30 annually.
Beaches and picnic areas at lakeside have separate parking. There is no reservation service. First come, first serve. Day-use at the Cedar Lake Recreation Site offers two beaches, a picnic site, swimming, small craft use, parking and toilet facilities.
One beach accommodates manual launching of small boats for exploring and fishing the small lake. A small parking area nearby accommodates several vehicles with boat trailers. Guests should use protective footwear when swimming, wading, or boat-launching. Over 50 km of trails (the Moonraker Trail system) are accessible from the campground encouraging exploration by mountain bike, hiking or horseback.
Trails travel through a forest management area so be alert for possible logging activity. All routes become cross-country ski and snowshoe routes in the winter. It is an excellent place for a picnic lunch and a day of recreational hiking, biking or relaxation.
Photographs for this post were taken on August 8, 2013.