The Kettle Valley Railway (KVR) was built during the early 1900's primarily to connect the southern
interior of British Columbia to the coast. Constructed through some of the most extreme terrain in the world it was considered one of the engineering wonders of modern times. But even though it was responsible for the development of the southern interior and primarily the Okanagan region, the railroad closed down in 1989.Better road transportation and the prohibitive cost of maintaining the line through fierce winters... particularly through the Coquihalla Pass... made the Kettle Valley Railroad both inefficient and obsolete.Apart from a 16 mile section of track between Summerland and Faulder,which is used for steam excursions, all of the rails have long since been removed.
However the demise of the Kettle Valley Railroad has proved a blessing to cyclists. With the help of Parks Canada, the British Columbia government and many local initiatives the old railbed has been turned into one of the prime cycling paths in the world.The main cycling route between Midway and Hope is approximately 285 miles and can be cycled in 6 to 8 days depending on ones experience. The following photos will give some idea of both the condition of the roadbed and the various topographies and geographies along the route.
Two very good books about the KVR are available at Amazon.com..."McCulloch's Wonder" by Barrie Sanford describes the history of its development and demise.While the other is a must have guidebook for anyone planning to tour the KVR..."Cycling The Kettle Valley Railroad" by Don & Sandra Langford.