Dewar Hot Springs
After a couple of days of uncertainty about where to hike near St. Mary's Alpine Provincial Park in the Purcell Mountains of British Columbia, there was no doubt about where Eva B., John Bence, Parry Loeffler, Rob Maybury, Eva Nagyova, Zosia Zgolak and I were going on 5 September 2016.  Eva B. and John had suggested the long hike to Dewar Hot Springs as detailed in Hot Springs of Western Canada: A Complete Guide by Glenn Woodsworth and David Woodsworth, and after our meandering trip up Mount Manson, it was nice to not worry about route-finding for a change.  Although the hike to the hot springs is generally easy, the trail is quite wet and mucky in a lot of places, and it is a fairly long walk to boot.  Occasional views are limited to the surrounding nondescript ridges, but the real attraction of this hike remains the hot springs themselves.  Although park rangers reportedly dismantled several of the pools at the hot springs, there is at least one pool left which is large enough to accommodate a large group such as ours.  We considered ourselves fortunate to have the pool mostly to ourselves (a couple with a baby and dog arrived just before us but did not stay long), and we thoroughly enjoyed soaking in the warm waters.  Some of us even enjoyed soaking, albeit briefly, in the icy waters of Dewar Creek!  After drying ourselves off, we briefly visited the nearby backcountry campground before making the long march back to the trailhead.  That was followed by an even longer drive home to cap off the long weekend.
Eva B. is hiking in her pyjamas! The group crosses a girder bridge over a tributary of Dewar Creek.
Much welcomed after a very cold night! Stopping to enjoy the warmth of the morning sun are (L to R) Parry, Rob, Zosia, Eva N., Eva B. and John.
One of the three cabins was unlocked! The group comes across some other hikers as well as some private cabins not far from Dewar Hot Springs.
Don't be THAT guy! Stay on the designated trail. Steam rises from Dewar Hot Springs.  Note the tent which is pitched in an illegal location. fingernails are pretty dirty! Sonny picks up a boreal toad near the pool area.
After a chilly long weekend, this felt like heaven! Zosia, Eva B. and John are the first ones in the pool.

Best ever Labour Day long weekend of 2016!

Enjoying a well-deserved soak in the pool are (L to R) Parry, Eva N., Zosia, Rob, John, Eva B. and Sonny.

Looks like they like it even better than the hot pool! Eva B. watches as Zosia and Eva N. submerge themselves in icy Dewar Creek.
Actually, it wasn't that bad. Really! Sonny looks quite comfortable sitting in Dewar Creek.
It's quite possible that the park rangers dismantled this pool on purpose. The smaller upper pool is in need of some improvements before it can be used.
Parry is pointing to where he will go next, but only if it is sunny! After soaking in the hot pool, the group relaxes at the nearby backcountry campground.
Does this girl ever get tired? Zosia looks refreshed for the long hike back to the trailhead.
It's a long way to get here, but all is forgiven after a good soak in the hot springs! Total Distance:  22.3 kilometres
Round-Trip Time:  8 hours 14 minutes
Net Elevation Gain:  211 metres

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