Ladner Creek Trestle Bridge - After the fire
The Ladner Creek Trestle Bridge is a historic abandoned train bridge - a short drive from Hope, BC - that recently caught fire due to a hikers carelessness.
THE LADNER CREEK TRESTLE BRIDGE
The Ladner Creek Trestle Bridge has been on my hiking/picture taking bucket list for quite some time. It is such an iconic spot, and absolutely perfect for photo ops. I have been planning a little day-trip out to see the bridge and have a picnic. I planned on going the week that the bridge ended up catching fire. When I saw the news that it was on fire, before I had even made it there, I was devastated. I watched the story closely, praying that the bridge was going to be ok. The fire went on for days. I was convinced it would be nothing like the photos I have seen - the ones that made me want to go see the beauty in person so badly.
Well, a week after the fire - I decided to head out that way and see for myself what the damage was. Surprisingly, it’s not that bad. Yes, there is damage - but overall, the bridge itself is intact and still looking like a damn beauty. I tried to take a picture to see the damage (above you can see how the planks are dark/missing in the middle to end) but it was hard to get a good one without a drone. The main damage that was done is to the wooden planks in the middle/end along the bridge - a lot of these were burned away. You shouldn’t be walking along these anyways as they are very old, and very rotten. It’s an absolute shame that someone’s carelessness caused damage to this bridge, as well as creating havoc in the area for almost a week. I am thankful that the damage wasn’t too bad and that all the amazing crews nearby tackled the fire successfully.
RESPECT MOTHER NATURE
Moving forward, we need to remember to be respectful of Mother Nature. Fire season is approaching and there is no excuse for such carelessness.
If you are a smoker, make sure to butt it out when you are finished. NEVER toss it - even if you think it will probably land in a river below. There is no guarantee it will not start a forest fire, so why take that chance?
If you are having a fire, make sure you douse it completely with water - until you see that there isn’t a single glowing ember left.
If you’re cooking food, never dump hot coals somewhere that they could catch debris on fire. You would be surprised at what can start a fire. Better yet, use a CasusGrill to cook with! These 100% biodegradable bbqs are made of sustainable material, ready to grill in 5 minutes, and easy to stay SAFE with. The insulating lava stone works so well you can even pick up the bbq while it is cooking at 400+ degrees. There is no spark or flame, but you need to make sure to allow it to cool completely or pour water over the charcoal. It’s great to keep warm with or roast marshmallows if you decide to wait for it to cool. However it can take up to 3 hours to cool completely from the time you light the grill, so if you need to leave sooner than that - it’s best to pour water over it.
When visiting places like this - always remember to pack out what you pack in. There are no garbages here. It is in the middle of nowhere essentially, and the trail isn’t even marked. While the CasusGrill is biodegradable, it takes around 6 months in order to do so. It’s very light and you could easily leave the lava stones in the dirt (make sure to break them up/mix them in with the dirt). All that is left after is the paper bag and cardboard base/stand pieces. These are small enough to easily take back to your car.
Getting here is pretty easy: Located just off the Coquihalla Hwy about 30km east of Hope, BC is Ladner Creek. Use the Portia Exit #202 if you are coming from the West to do a u-turn just after crossing over the creek.
Coming back the way you came (but from the other side), you want to pull off the highway immediately before crossing the bridge. You don’t want to miss this! You will have to go back around again if you do. PRO TIP: try to make sure there aren’t 8 semi trucks behind you (this happened to me), it made it a little difficult/scary to slow down so fast in order to pull into the gravel pull off before the bridge. After exiting the highway onto the gravel road, I like to park close to the highway, but kind of behind the trees there so my car isn’t seen from the highway. The trailhead starts almost immediately after pulling off, and can be hard to locate if it’s your first time there. There is a bright pink-y/orange marker that looks out of place, but that is the trail starting point. It begins with a short scramble up about 50m of loose rock: if you look up, you will see the opening to the trail and from there it is pretty easy to see follow.
There will eventually be a pretty wide trail through the forest and after about 1km, you will come to an old train tunnel. The train tunnel has been destroyed/filled in and unfortunately you cannot walk through. However, you can go over it! To the left of the tunnel there is a short incline, with the assistance of ropes and wires. I found the ropes and wires most helpful coming down!
Above the tunnel, you can see the Trestle and get a great view of the area. If you want to get closer, you will see another little path with a wire along it leading to more loose rock and a dusty slope. Once you successfully follow this, you will be right at the beginning of the bridge.
The Trestle Bridge is amazing to look at, it’s a beautiful spot to sit and take in the view. It is not recommended to walk over the extremely old bridge - the wooden planks are rotting (plus a lot of them are burned away now) and the metal edges aren’t very big. One slip and you could easily fall. You can take in the view as well as get beautiful pictures while staying close to safety.
Always take the scene route,