There is nothing like completing a challenging hike, and Mount Outram, in Southern British Columbia, Canada, is definitely one of them. With an elevation gain of 1,800 meters, or 5,900 feet, over 9 kilometers, or 5.6 miles, it can certainly be grueling. However, for those less inclined to climb to the summit, arguably the main feature of Mount Outram is not the view from the top—although it’s spectacular—but the beautiful meadows, with some of the best shows of mountain flowers that you will ever see.
Mount Outram is located in the Cascade Mountains, and was named for Sir James Outram, a mountaineer and a British clergymen. Sir Outram made first ascents of many mountains in the Canadian Rockies, including Assiniboine, Bryce, and Columbia. In 1905, he published a book, In the Heart of the Canadian Rockies, which tells about his adventures during the early days of mountaineering in the area. In fact, the Canadian Rockies also have a mountain named for Sir James Outram.
On my post, Ground Squirrels and a Bear, I described some of the history of Manning Provincial Park. For this hike, the trailhead and early section are in the park, but most of the area, including the meadows and summit, are not. The trailhead is located at the west gate, about 200 kilometers east of Vancouver. The drive takes about 2 1/2 hours. If you’re travelling from Vancouver and plan to hike to the summit, be prepared for a long day.
The west gate of Manning Provincial Park.
After a long climb through the trees, the trail leads to the lower meadows of Mount Outram.
Only in the lower meadows exists one my favorite flowers: the Tiger Lily or Columbia Lily.
From last summer, the lower meadows had an abundance of yellow and purple daisies or asters.
This was a little higher up during a previous year. What a beautiful show!
Looking toward the mountains of Manning Provincial Park.
Phlox in the rock garden.
Yes, a natural rock garden. The phlox is in full bloom here.
Another favorite, the Indian paintbrush.
The ridge and meadows to the east of Outram.
Heather at its peak show during a good year.
The Western Pasque Flower or Western Anenome during one visit, early in the season, and…
the feathery seed pods, taken a little later in the season, during another year. Yes, it’s the same flower.
Penstemon and paintbrush taken a little higher up; again looking toward Manning Park.
Mount Outram gets more noticeable, and daunting, the higher you climb.
This is the upper meadows at its best show.
Nearing the end of the upper meadows of Outram. A steep hike up scree or talus is ahead for those who are not yet tired. Views From Mount Outram will be a future blog post.
Once again, the beautiful upper meadows.
Truly, a place that is very special to me.
I hope you enjoyed this post, as I continue to showcase areas of British Columbia, close to my home. I will surely venture out more this summer. Not sure where… I hope you will join me.
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