Scenic Drives & Wildlife

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Scenic Drives

North, south, west or east – Fairmont Hot Springs Resort is your hub for enjoying scenic drives.

Fairmont Hot Springs to Canal Flats (20 min)

Enjoy easily accessible view points of Columbia Lake along this scenic drive. Pull off areas are clearly marked and the views of the aqua coloured Columbia Lake are spectacular. On the way back, enjoy the best view of the jaw dropping Hoodoo formations just south of Fairmont Hot Springs.

Westside Road (25 minutes)

Take the scenic route to Invermere along Westside Road. Stop along the way for a short hike through the Hoodoo Property owned and maintained by the Nature Trust of British Columbia. This route offers opportunity to see elk, deer, bear, and more!

North to Golden (1.5 Hours)

Wonderful views of the Valley and the meandering Columbia River. Make time to drop into the Wolf Centre for a tour along the way. Kootenay National Park (1.5 Hours) The drive through Kootenay National Park is a memorable experience. Enjoy historical points of interest and view points of stunning mountain valleys and the Kootenay River. Enjoy a shorter trip just into Kootenay or keep going to the other connecting areas such as Banff National Park and Lake Louise.

Back Roads

If you have the right vehicle, check out some of the popular back roads of the area. Head into more remote areas that will tickle the fancy of any outdoor enthusiast. Ask our team about local recommendations.

Wildlife & Bird Watching 

Fairmont Hot Springs Resort offers many viewing opportunities on property and within the surrounding area.

Resort Property

You don’t need to go far to see local wildlife and birds – just steps from your hotel room door offers an opportunity to see deer, elk, big horned sheep, and an array of different bird species. Hear Ruby Crowned Kinglets on your way to the hot pools, relax to the soothing song of the red-eyed-vireo, and take in the other sounds and sights of nature while relaxing in the sun.

Columbia Lake Provincial Park (5 min)

While traveling down this well-maintained dirt road, look up on the mountainside for Big Horned Sheep and along the wetlands for Marsh Wrens, ducks, and spotted frogs. Scan the shores of Columbia Lake for many species of Grebe, Loons, Great Blue Herons, and more. Enjoy the open grassland where Bluebirds, Western Meadowlarks, Crossbills, elk and ground squirrels are often found.

Lewis’s Woodpecker on Riverside Golf Course

Our very own golf course is home to one of the more uncommon bird species of the area – the Lewis’s Woodpecker. Within the golf course grounds, five nesting pairs have been spotted. This is an easy way to tick this bird of your bird species list. In 2010, Fairmont Hot Springs Resort and the Columbia Basin Trust planted 1,000 trees with the intention of sustaining this sought-after Lewis’s nesting habitat. You may also spot Wood Ducks, Mergansers, American Dippers, Sandpipers, and American Widgeons along this section of the Columbia Rivers which flows through Riverside Golf Course.

The Columbia Wetlands

The Columbia Wetlands is a large wetland and river system located in the bottom of our local valley. These wetlands are one of the largest in Canada and on the planet. This 180 km wetland system is recognized as a wetland of international importance by the United Nations under the RAMSAR Treaty. Viewpoints of this wetland system offer great birding opportunities.

Ask our Team

The resort’s naturalist team is on-site and ready to inspire! Ask us about our favourite wildlife and bird watching areas. We do our best to stay up-to-date on where and when animals and birds are visiting an area.

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