Location: Sheep River Provincial Park, Junction Creek Day Use Area
Length: Approximately 14 km
Time: 6 – 7 Hours
Elevation Gain: 1545 ft / 471 m
Difficulty: Moderate (water crossing)
The Junction Creek Trail to Junction Falls is a new favourite amongst the Trails and Paddles team. This moderate hike is a hidden gem in the Sheep River Provincial Park right across the river from the Junction Creek day use area. It starts off in one of the picnic sites on the east side of the area. The only real obstacle must be tackled first, a river crossing. Depending on what month it is, the water can be up to 3ft with run off so keep this in mind for safety reasons and if you are considering bringing children or animals. We traversed the freezing water quite easily because we chose to do the hike in late August when the water was only knee level. We wore water shoes and carried our boots, leaving the shoes in the bushes for our walk back across the creek when we ended our hike.
Once on the trail it is basically flat, weaving its way through the thick and mossy forest. It is also used as an equestrian trail so some parts were a bit muddy and torn up, but overall it was very easy to follow. The river crossing makes this trail less populated, so you likely wont see a great number of other hikers. We saw tons of evidence of wildlife from scat to tracks so be aware and bring your bear spray with you.
The best part of this hike is all the waterfalls and creek beds to explore. Along the way we saw a number of smaller falls that gradually increased in size until we got to the impressive Junction Falls. Truly a gorgeous sight and great place to have lunch and soak in all the beautiful scenery. It is definitely worth the three hours in and three hours out! This hike is an out and back, so once you’ve had your fill just head back the way you came and cross the freezing river one more time. Honestly it felt quite nice on my sore feet at the end of the day! And since you end up in the day use area, why not have a fire and roast a tasty snack to finish off a great day.