Cartwright Mountain, one of the many beautiful mountains surrounding Summerland and offering a gorgeous view of the Okanagan Valley. There are two spots to park and go. One is at the old Summerland Public Works Yard near the rodeo grounds at the east end of Summerland off Prairie Valley Road. You can park your car here and hike up to find the old flume line at which you can start your trek across the mountain. The other spot is a favourite of mine and can be found by heading up Quinpool Rd (off of Jubilee) all the way until you reach a T, turn right onto Cartwright Ave until you hit a new development area. Here you can pull over, gather your hiking supplies and head up or around one side of the mountain. There is actually a trail off to the right that you can hike up the other side of the mountain as well but offers less views of the town and a different sort of more moderate to hard hike in some areas. You can read more about that one here.
Once parked, head off to the left side of the development, there is a trail that you can follow up and over. Be prepared for a few smaller steeper points in this trail and some rocky areas but once you hit the top it opens up and it’s pretty easy going. You’ll know once you hit the golden spot when you can see a 180 of the town and surrounding area. You are able to go all the way across the mountain to the other entrance/exit if you wish. Be aware that this mountain wouldn’t be the best type of hike to do in the middle of a hot summer afternoon due to little shade and not very pleasant to walk under icy winter conditions because of some steeper parts to the trail (now snowshoeing is another story all together and is something we’ll be doing over the winter!).
I find once getting to the Cartwright Ave entrance to the mountain head right and up, this is a bit of a steeper slope but once you get to the top it’s definitely worth it, you may also go straight across however wont have a chance to get high enough for the view (unless you scale the mountain side). We’ve heard the the old Summerland Public Works Yard entrance isn’t as difficult to traverse across Cartwright Mountain so if you’re looking for a family friendly hike this entrance might be better (we can’t give an EXACT location as to this entrance as we haven’t had a chance to explore this one). While walking about on the trails be sure to keep an eye out for motor bikes as the trail is sometimes used by them.
Please keep note that there are no washroom facilities located on this path and no garbage cans. Allocate at least an hour to two hours for this hike to really enjoy your surroundings.
The Trail Scoop:
Trail difficulty: Easy-Moderate
Garbage bins: None
Bathroom facilities: None
Dog Friendly: Yes