Tom Koleszar – “the new Emma Direct Trail”
by Tom Koleszar, 20 August 2020.
I recently explored the newly cleared trail up to Emma Lake called “Emma Direct”, and another club member had asked me to submit a report on it – so here it is!
The trail starts about 600m up Branch A800 at an elevation of 200m (the turn off is roughly 4km past the head of Goat Lake on the Goat Main). From there you proceed 2.5km along the old A800 road, enjoying several waterfalls and views along the way. After the road ends, the trail continues another 3km up through regenerating forest and older subalpine forest until you reach Emma Lake 1150m higher than where you started, coming out right behind the cabin. The trail itself is rough – as is typical of a new trail – and quite steep, but the end makes it all worthwhile. There are a couple of spots where ropes are emplaced to assist with steep sections, and even a short tunnel through boulders! Less than 1km before Emma Lake, there is a side branch to Scrub Lake – a worthwhile diversion to a picturesque little spot!
The views of mountains and lakes, along with the creeks and ponds and wildflower meadows, make this a truly wonderful and popular spot. We passed groups of all ages from children on up both coming and going (the children didn’t have to carry packs, and seemed the happiest of all!).
Special thanks to the Knuckleheads Winter Recreation Association for all their hard work on the trail, and to PRPAWS for lending them some of the necessary equipment to do the work.