This great multi-use trail is close to Rossland and serves as the beginning (or end) of the seven summits trail, but features a destination peak (the Knob, or Record Mtn) for those not wanting to commit to the 35km through-hike of the entire 7S. The suggested 4 hour completion time is to THE KNOB ONLY - an additional 3 hours (on foot) should be added for Record Mountain. The moderate rating is for foot traffic, on a bike it would warrant a mark of 'difficult'. The trail starts high, which means minimal elevation gain for ridge-top action, and views way down across the border and the Monashees all around. It would warrant a 4, except I've been spoiled by soaring granite peaks, so the 'mountains' rolling off into the distance just aren't up to my standards. Dogs are welcome off-leash, but be warned there are no water sources in the summer.
10 minutes from the trailhead, you'll be faced with the option of 'seven summits route' or 'record ridge'. Both eventually meet up, but this description is for the less-direct record ridge option. Stay low and to the left for this spur, and the one another few minutes later, and the trail will eventually curve northward and uphill. The track ascends over a knoll with a satellite dish on top of it, then dips back into a gully.
Approx 40 minutes into the hike you will reach a rocky wall that is fairly steep, but passable. A sign marked 'seven summits' points you upward, and at this point both trail options have joined together. The trail is steep, but there is an unmarked option that follows the rock face to the left until the grade becomes easier - a wise option during avalanche season. Once atop the ridge, the main trail becomes obvious as it follows the ridge crest to the high point in the distance.
The trail weaves amongst some interesting, twisted trees, with evidence of their woodpecker inhabitants. At about an hour, you'll find yourself atop a minor summit, and a good turn-around point for a short outing. From here, however, a glance north will reveal The Knob, which looms about 150m higher in the near distance. The summer trail winds around the less steep, western side of The Knob, but winter adventurers often take their chances with the more direct (unmarked), and frightening, eastern route. The official trail does not summit The Knob, but route-finding along the open slopes is easy (take care in winter).
A swift 45 minutes from the minor summit should find you atop The Knob (1760m), with the best panorama thus far on the entire trail. About 3.5 km further uptrail, you can see the looming height of Record Mountain, which requires a ridge-top descent and lung-expanding (off-trail scramble) ascent to reach its 2100m peak.
From Rossland, take HWY 22 South approx 200m beyond the Mining Museum the Old Cascade Hwy veers off the main road on the right (across from Trailer Park). Follow the graded dirt road (2wd accessible) 13.8 km (to km marker 12 of all things) and a wide pull-out that is the trailhead (fits 6-8 vehicles). There is a sign board with a trail map at the edge of the parking area.
Across the road is the beginning of the Dewdney mtn bike trail as well.
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