Scenic drive over Kootenay Pass on PH-3 British
July 5, 2007.
We are staying in Pair-A-Dice
RV-Park, in Creston,
British Columbia. $26.71 gravel interior roads, FHU including cable. This
is an OK RV Park.
decided to do the Scenic
Loop around Kootenay Lake today, starting in Creston
and heading west over Kootenay Pass. Kootenay Pass is located between Creston
and Salmo on PH 3.
But before we start climbing Kootenay Pass ---- PH 3
Flats" that old marsh area that has been converted into a wonderful
farming region by dikes that contain the Kootenay River.
I stopped to watch
this hay baler. Look closely at the back of this baler and you will see it "birthing"
a huge bale of hay.
addition to hay and grain fields there is a smattering of these bright yellow
Mechanized hay bale hauler & unloader
mechanized bale hauler and stacker was operating in the same field that the baler
was working in. Notice how this rig has the ability to stack these large bales
4-deep. We watched as this driver unloaded the stack of hay bales directly behind
where he is about to deposit this stack of 4-bales. The operation is about as
mechanized as it can be.
Mountains British Columbia on Kootenay Pass Highway PH-3
After crossing "the Flats" we entered
the Selkirk Mountains
and immediately began to climb, as in seriously climb.
Pass Highway PH-3
I think we were on an 8% grade for 16 to 18 miles.
I couldn't find any information on Kootenay Pass that I could share with you.
What I can tell you is that the grade goes on for what seems like forever, and
it is an 8% or better grade. I am very glad we are in our Saturn and not the motorhome.
Pass on PH3 on British Columbia
is getting near the summit and things have flattened out while we wait for the
down grade on the other side.
of Kootenay Pass PH3 British Columbia
is more of that traveling around at the crest of Kootenay Pass waiting for the
sign signaling we are heading down.
chutes and glacial cirques near Kootenay Pass on PH-3
chutes and glacial cirques
are what provide the scenery at this altitude.
the summit of Kootenay Pass British Columbia on PH3
sides fall off dramatically but as you can tell we are very near the summit.
Cirque close to the summit of Kootenay Pass on PH3
are very close to that cupped out cirque.
At a higher altitude it would be full of glacial ice year around.
at the summit of Kootenay Pass on PH3
Provinçial Road Maintenance Office maintained a materials storage area
at the summit. Caribou
(reindeer) were actively using this as a mineral lick.
or Reindeer at summit of Kootenay Pass Highway PH-3
asked several locals what these were and ALL of them said elk. We are tourist
from Florida and even we know better than that. They were much smaller than any
elk we have ever seen plus their coloring was much lighter as in almost a cream
or Caribou at the summit of Kootenay Pass PH3 British Columbia
antlers had flat spots and all elk I have ever seen had antlers that were for
the most part round. Also these animals sported a very light color neck area as
compared to the remainder of their body's color.
Even when I pointed out
these characteristics the locals kept insisting they were elk. I hope none of
them wasted any money on a hunting license.
reindeer or caribou at the summit of Kootenay Pass on PH3
were babies present in the group although none in this group. The adults mostly
looked like they may weigh possibly 200 pounds.
You can see the light
coloring on the neck if you examine the cow in the picture above.
in extreme southern British Columbia less than 50-miles from the Washington-Idaho
border high in the Selkirk Mountains 30-miles west of Creston,
Kootenay Pass on PH3
sign that we are headed down the western slope of Kootenay Pass on PH3
This sign is at the summit as we are
headed west. What this sign does not say is that at the end of this 8% grade there
are several signs for 6% grades then several more for 4% grades. Like I said the
grade on both side goes on and on and on for what seems like an eternity.
Lake at the summit of Kootenay Pass on
beautiful lake was at the summit located across the street from the highway maintenance
departments materials storage area where the reindeer were.
grade down the western side of Kootenay pass on PH-3
last it is time to tackle the down grade.
is a steep and long grade down the western side of Kootenay Pass on PH-3
the grade up the grade down goes on constantly.
grade on western side of Kootenay Pass on PH3
had to gear way down and creep down the same way they got up. Note the runaway
truck ramp at the end of this straight grade. There must have been 5 or more runaway
truck ramps on the west side of Kootenay pass.
escape lane on Kootenay Pass Highway PH-3
must be wonderful sight if you are a trucker in distress.
Horn sheep sign on Kootenay Pass Highway PH-3
were told that big horn sheep were a common sighting up here but we did not see
any. If you happen by this way make sure that you keep your eyes pealed for "Big
Horn Sheep" near the summit.