We have two of the larch species in this area and the Alpine, or Lyle’s Larch up at the higher elevations have almost finish showing off their brilliant golden shades on their twisted branches.
Down in the lower valleys we are surrounded by the noble Western Larch and at this time of year they are at their golden best, interspersed with the green shades of the pines and firs.
The various willows and shrubs add to the colour mix with their yellow and red fall hues.
But this year, because of the extremely dry summer we think our larch will yellow-up and lose their needles earlier than usual.
Kimberley Nature Park Society offers you two chances to get out on the trails to enjoy the western larch trees before they shed their needles. A ‘preview’ larch hike on Sunday, Oct. 11 at 10 am called “Chasing the Colours” will start from the Nordic Centre. Suzanne McAllister (427-7043) will be your guide and you will get a walk across the deep grasses on the receding Dipper Lake and observe a beautiful grove of Trembling Aspen.
The regular annual Larch Hike will take place on Sunday, October 18. Join us for this second chance to chase the colours on a hike to Dipper Lake before the wind strips the needles and leaves for another year. There are two starting points.
You can choose to meet at the Nordic Centre at 9 am for a mainly-flat eight kilometre round-trip lasting about four hours. Or you can meet at the junction of St. Mary Road and Mathew Creek Road (6.8 km) at 9:30 am for a short car pool then a moderate four kilometre round-trip hike for approximately three hours. Both parties will meet at Dipper Lake where you have the option of exchanging car keys with a friend and hiking out the other route.
These hikes are suitable for all walkers. Just bring your own supplies and come ready to enjoy the outdoors. For information call Struan Robertson (427-5048). Always a popular end of season outing, the Larch Hike offers outdoor exercise with friends before the cooler weather sets in.