Many times I have travelled the Coquihalla Highway and sigh as we speed past exits that taunt me with the possiblities of hitting trails and escaping into the beauty of BC's backcountry. Understanding that travel thru here is a means to an end - get from point A to point B. But does it have to be?
Determined to work in some outdoor adventure our next time thru, I did a little research and stumbled upon a trail that would fit in perfectly with our travel plans on Hwy 5.
Falls Lake Exit 221, near the summit of the Coquihalla Highway, will easily lead you to a parking area for Falls Lake. From there it is an easy 1.5km trail to a scenic lake. (3km round trip) The trail is a well groomed dirt trail with some stairs, a couple of boardwalks and only 40m of elevation gain so I would consider this an easy hike for anyone.
Because this stop was our rest break while travelling from point A to point B, we opted to trail run to the lake in order to maximize our time there. It took us about 8 mins to run to the lake and 6.12 mins to run get back to our vehicle. Ben and Liv were highly motivated to beat their time!
Total time for our rest break was an hour. We ate lunch at the lake. Went for a swim and had the whole lake to ourselves. The experience turned out to be more spectacular than I had imagined. Falls Lake can be more than just a pit stop. There were a couple tent pads, outhouses, and a food cache so wilderness camping is also an option. The area would be accesible all year round and is ideal for snowshoeing. May have to stop here next time we travel in the winter.