Time: 2 hours up and down.
Trail Type: Out and Back
Grade: Steep but runnable
Distance: 8.5 km
Great for: Large groups, varying ability
Time of Year: Late Spring, Summer, Early Fall
Carbondale Fire lookout Run:
a beautiful, quick run/hike in the Beaver mines area, on the way to castle mountain. A great after (or before!) work jaunt in late spring through the fall!
From the Beaver Mines general store, head southwest on the main Hwy (the 774) out of town, towards Castle mountain resort. Take the turn off to the Right about 15 km after leaving Beaver Mines, towards castle falls. Follow this road for 3km, paying attention to the left side of the road, there will be a closed off road leading upwards. This is your trailhead!
You’ll start in the trees on this wide trail. The trail begins as a long, gentle uphill, before switching back and becoming steeper. We usually alternate between walk and run intervals to keep this section interesting for the first kilometer and a half.
Just before the 2km mark, there is a viewpoint on the Left side of the trail. It is worth stopping and taking in the view! Just after this point you will hit snow in the shoulder season, due to how covered the trail is by trees. In the summer, it is a great reprieve from the heat.
Kilometer 3-4 is where the trail starts opening up and the view starts shining- Fuelled by the view and a slightly lower grade, this portion of the trail is great for a sprint to the top: At the top of the trail, the Carbondale Fire Lookout is home to a fire warden. They may come out and say hello! A picnic table, heli-platform and Firepit are also at the top, although these are for the use of the firewarden.
Turning around at this point, you’ll prance down quickly to the vehicle. Check out Castle Falls on your way out for a quick dip.