Simpson River Topo Map

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A pleasant hike along the Simpson River. Although this hike is generally completed as an out-and-back day hike, we would also recommend it as an introductory backcountry trip. Hike 10.2 kilometers to the Surprise Creek shelter, about 2 kilometers past the Kootenay Park boundary, stay overnight, then hike back out. The shelter is well maintained and will sleep four comfortably; be sure to book it in advance through one of the park’s information centers (Vermilion Crossing is closest). If you intend to complete this trip in a day, as we did, you may be disappointed if you hike only to the official park boundary, which is hidden away in the trees. The only uninterrupted mountain view to be had on this trail is about 100 meters before the shelter, where you’ll pass over the Simpson River, gaining a nice view of Indian Peak (2,992 m).

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