Redstreak Creek is a short, easy hike through lush forest in Kootenay National Park near Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia.
The trailhead, with gravel parking for a few cars, is clearly signed and obvious along the Banff-Windermere Parkway about 4.3 KMs (2⅝ miles) inside the Kootenay National Park west gate near the Village of Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia, Canada. To accidentally drive past the Redstreak Creek trailhead is an easy recovery with a quick turnabout at the parking area for the Kindersley Pass / Sinclair Creek Loop. There is so much beauty in this area, momentary distraction is not uncommon.
The parking area is the highlight of this short, forest hike. Redstreak Creek is a modest but idyllic stream of cascading white water creating a tiny waterfall tumbling into the Sinclair River along roadside. Combined with the soothing sound of white, crystal water and the fresh aroma around the rustic boardwalk, the attention-absorbing scene is beautiful and captivating.
The hike proceeds across the bridge to a sharp left turn, followed by a sharp right turn where the good quality trail briefly ascends more aggressively past overwhelmingly aromatic, moss-covered rock walls. Soon, the modest altitude gain levels to nearly imperceptible ascent as the hike continues through lush, dense forest occasionally interrupted with easy-to-navigate dead fall. Snippets of running water appear from time to time as this short and easy 5.2 KM (3¼ mile) round trip hike gains 160 meters (525 feet) to a maximum of 1,155 meters (3,790 feet) where a tiny, spring-fed stream gurgles at path-side near the End of Trail sign.
Return is via the same route taken in. The unassuming trail through dense forest with consistent features is a nice, short walk which can be a pleasant beginning, an interlude or a day ending exercise to complement an additional and more aggressive objective. This hiking trail would be excellent for children or older folks who want something easy and relaxing. The trail is not suitable for wheelchairs.
Forest features near the confluence of Redearth Creek with Sinclair River become quite lush in the presence of moist terrain and the confined protection of the valley.
Rushing white water in Sinclair River near Redstreak Creek
This is a short, easy hike nearly anyone can do. In early day, protection from damp trail and forest would be sensible and gaiters or waterproof gear may potentially make the experience more comfortable.
Reference Gem Trek Map ‘Kootenay National Park’ available at most outdoor recreation stores or Map Town for personal shopping and on-line orders.
Photographs are taken near the south end of Kootenay National Park near the Village of Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia, Canada in the early morning of Sunday, August 14, 2016.