Vidler Ridge is just at the edge of the Monashees and on a nice day there are views of Monashee Provincial Park and the Pinnacles.
Lets cut to the chase. There are mostly positive reviews of VR but this hike didn’t do it for me. For one, the trail is terrible. Up top is an ATV playground where the forest has been ripped up in all directions. The hiking trail is mostly walking along said ATV trails with enough puddles and mud to sour the experience.
Vidler Ridge is sort of a meadowy plateau and while there are good views at the edges of cliffs, most of the hike is in lackluster forest and marsh. My main objection to VR is that for a full day (driving and hiking) investment there are so many better hikes nearby. This is definitely an experience after many others in the area. The Monashees are clearly visible but just a few too many ridges back to fully appreciate.
Directions to Trailhead:
Drive east out of Vernon on Hwy 6 for around 50km. Long after Lumby but before Cherryville, there will be signs for Sugar Lake Rd. Turn left and continue for 16km. Turn right on Kate Creek forestry road (if you hit Sugar Lake and cross a bridge you just missed it). A couple of km later, veer right onto Outlet Creek Road. 9.5km more and there is a bridge over Outlet creek. Continue for 8km until there is a second bridge. Cross it and make a hard right up the hill for a final 1.6km.
Vernon to Trailhead: 2 hours, 48km highway + 37km forestry road
Hike Return time: 6 hours
Trail Length: 13km
Elevation gain: 340m
GPS: a good idea but not impossible
Clear trail: no, lots of crisscrossing trails + ATV tracks