The Ragged Red Ridge Route

The Ragged Red Ridge Route

Posted on: June 3, 2018 8:49 am
by: Doug Smith

The Ragged Red Ridge Route is not a designated trail in Lac du Bois Protected Area.   The official trail from the Dewdrop Range to the rim of the Red Plateau Escarpment is the 3.75 km (one way) climb to Red Plateau.   The Ragged Red Ridge is a parallel route that goes straight up the 410 m (1345 ft.) climb in half that distance.  The ridge is fairly barren and rocky and there are a number of obstacles to go around or over.    There is no trail, but there is a faint game trail on the top of the ridge and there are good scramble routes past all of the obstacles.

For the steep part, we climbed the 550m vertical metres (1800 feet) in 1.6 km in just over an hour.   The slope gradient averaged about 30%.  It was a hot day and there is little shade until we linked to the dewdrop Trail on top.   We hiked down the established trail back to the parking area in an hour and a half.

The Ragged Red Ridge in the middle of the photo.   It can be a bit intimidating to strike off up the ridge, but we just completed each section as we came to it, taking breaks as needed.

Near the bottom, we ran into a large Western Basin gopher snake.   This is the largest snake species in B.C.  It is a non-poisonous constrictor that mostly feeds on rodents.   It slithered across the trail and coiled up under a log.  It was about 4 feet long.

Much of the footing on the Ragged Red Ridge is on loose material.   Good boots and trekking poles helped.   It is not a good choice for a downhill route in any season.

There are series of rocky volcanic bluffs to go around, over, or through.   We did need to scramble a bit, but all sections were safe.

Some of the outcrops were straight-forward to negotiate as we climbed a series of ledges to get higher.

Below us, the Dewdrop Range is a 1.5 km wide benchlands.

The most difficult obstacles were near the top, but all looked worse than they actually were.   Anyone with scrambling experience can complete this ridge climb with care and caution.

As we worked our way up the final bluff, a raven watched our progress.

From the top of the ridge, we had excellent views of the floodlands below.

The rocky hills of Kamloops Lake spans 180 degrees of our view to the south views.

We left the rocky, ragged volcanic world of the Ragged Red Ridge and we then followed the Dewdrop Trail through the forest and down the parallel ridge route to the east, a longer, but easier route.   The Ragged Red Ridge Route is only about 7km, but progress is slow going up, so the loop route took 3.5 hours (including lunch and other breaks).

The Ragged Red Ridge Route is an adventure in our own backyard.

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About the Author

Doug Smith

Doug writes for Kamloops Trails, a not-for-profit (and ad free) website, offering information on trails, waterways, routes, featured spots, viewpoints, and explorations in the outdoors in the Kamloops area (and beyond).

Doug started exploring this area in 1976 and continues to follow tracks and routes wherever they lead, with the aid of map, compass, GPSr and camera. After many dead-ends, but also many discoveries, he chose to share this information.

The Kamloops Trails website has a massive number of interesting posts and would be of interest to anyone in Kamloops who enjoys the outdoors. Visit the Kamloops Trails website at:


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