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Old 04-23-09, 01:09 PM   #1
aroundoz
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Kettle Valley Railway

I was going to tour the maritimes this summer but my plans got derailed so being a resident of BC, I think I will do the KVR instead since it's very close to home.

However, I did a search and was surprised that I didn't get any hits. Has anyone ridden it or parts of it? Kind of like BC's version of the Katy Trail.

http://www.kettlevalleyrailway.ca/
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Old 04-23-09, 01:22 PM   #2
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I did part of it with a friend a couple of summers ago, from Kelowna to Rock Creek. The trestles that burned down in the fire a few years back are now rebuilt, so you can go through all the tunnels. The scenery, especially the lakes, was nice, and except for dirt bikers in a couple of spots making noise, it was a very pleasant trip.
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Old 04-23-09, 01:41 PM   #3
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A couple of friends did this route several years ago, and had nothing but praise for the trip. From everything that they reported, it was a beautiful and memorable journey.
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Old 04-23-09, 02:05 PM   #4
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HI aroundoz
Yep, cycled the KVR last year at the beginning of August. Was not impressed!
Trail was either washboard or churned up dirt from all the ATV's (who aren't supposed to be there btw) on it. Lots of arrogance from them too!

The route is extremely popular so in Summer it is busy. And not with cyclists as you may think: No, there are more 4x4's, atv's and motorcross bikes on the path all doing their bit to completely destroy the once (?) well graded trail; add knucklehead ambience and scare away any of the nature that once lived in these parts. Don't know exactly when you are planning to do the trip, but don't go anywhere close to BC Day.

We started in Hope (this first stretch is beautiful and reasonably quiet), but after a half day of riding on semi to good path, we were confronted with what I would basically term: MTB terrain. Even without a fully loaded bike, you'd have to carry your gear over some sections. So, if you are going to do it pack very light.

Also the trail is badly signposted and you find yourself back on the main highway several times (others that we met (both directions) had exactly the same problem). The main drag is nightmare riding and we were pushed off the road continually. I hated it!

We were planning to follow it all the way to Kelowna, but went as far as Penticton when we just plain stopped using the trail altogether and stuck to both minor and forest service roads which are in just a tad better condition.

Of course we were fully loaded back and front, which makes an incredible difference when pedalling through sand.

Two camping spots that were cool:
There's a small user-maintained camping further on from the main site at Coquihalla Lakes. (quieter and no ATV's and motorcross bikes)
Chain Lake Forest Services Campsite near Bankeir is a great spot to hangout.

PS: if you want to read the nitty gritty details, distances, altimetres etc of our trip then check out this link: http://www.tour.tk/on-the-road-0808-...canada-usa.htm
BUT...I don't write a pretty picture of the KRV nor bike touring in BC in general, so you are prior warned.

Personally: if I had my time over again, I'd stay on Vancouver Island and just amble my way around. The cycling is really challenging, there are a few gravel trails in much, much better condition than the KVR, amazingly beautiful beaches, rivers, tonnes of wonderful camping (free) opportunities and you can get off the beaten track and way, way, away from all the holiday-makers. Just my opinion :-)

Last edited by tourdottk; 04-23-09 at 02:27 PM.
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Old 04-24-09, 03:08 AM   #5
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I haven`t ridden it, but I know there`s at least one nice tour journal from the route on Crazyguy. At least I read one, there may be more- have you looked there?
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Old 04-24-09, 08:46 AM   #6
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i rode the Kettle Valley from McCuloch Stn to Chute Lake a few years ago. it was absolutely a fantastic bike ride. There were a few ATV's on it however from all I read now they appear to have taken it over and destroyed. Really sad
Last summer I rode the entire Confederation Trail in PEI. There are volunteers who regularly patrol it to prevent ATV riders from riding it. I only saw a few ATV's in my 6 days me.
In terms of sheer enjoyment and scenery prefer the Kettle Valley.
Sounds like I'll not be returning to the Kettle Valley any time soon.
I'll ride on the Island probably the Galloping Goose
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Old 04-24-09, 12:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerbob1 View Post
i rode the Kettle Valley from McCuloch Stn to Chute Lake a few years ago. it was absolutely a fantastic bike ride. There were a few ATV's on it however from all I read now they appear to have taken it over and destroyed. Really sad
Last summer I rode the entire Confederation Trail in PEI. There are volunteers who regularly patrol it to prevent ATV riders from riding it. I only saw a few ATV's in my 6 days me.
In terms of sheer enjoyment and scenery prefer the Kettle Valley.
Sounds like I'll not be returning to the Kettle Valley any time soon.
I'll ride on the Island probably the Galloping Goose
Yikes! Was thinking of riding the KVR in May....
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Old 04-24-09, 02:46 PM   #8
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Sad news indeed! I was also looking at doing the KVR with a couple of friends. Victoria Island does sound like it might be a better deal, I love the Goose. Damn. Is there anything to be done about it?
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Old 04-25-09, 07:59 AM   #9
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Thanks for the responses. I did hear rumors of the atv use but had no idea it was this extensive and blatant. It's sad and frustrating. I am not overlooking those who had good experiences but it seems like those trips took place several years ago and things have deteriorated since then. I don't mind dealing w/ a trail that has bad sections but only for the sake of getting away from traffic and it doesn't sound like that would be the case. Anyway, I haven't ruled it but I am thinking of other options in BC.
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