The Conrad Kain Hut in the Bugaboos

The Conrad Kain Hut with the Anniversary Glacier behind.

The Conrad Kain Hut with the Anniversary Glacier behind.

Bottom Line: 

A modern and comfortable cabin in the wild and rugged Bugaboos of the Purcell Mountains. Amenities include running water, stoves, electric lighting, heating and wall outlets. None of those conveniences can compare though with the views of rock spires and rumbling glaciers that surround this Hut. They simply need to be seen to be believed. You will be amazed that you can stay in this place for only CA$25 per night!

View from the Breakfast Tables out towards Bugaboo Glacier

View from the Breakfast Tables out towards Bugaboo Glacier

Observations:

The Bugaboos in the Purcell Mountains near Golden, BC have long been famous among Mountaineers as a destination to experience some of the finest alpine climbing available in the world. But a stay at the Conrad Kain Hut needn’t just be a base camp for climbers alone.

Indeed, on our visit we rubbed shoulders with trail runners, day hikers, backpackers, photographers and a few families with children. Hopefully the photos included within this article can help to explain why everyone capable of hiking the steep trail from the parking lot should visit this place and consider a stay at the Conrad Kain Hut.

The main eating and socializing area in the Conrad Kain Hut

The main eating and socializing area in the Conrad Kain Hut

Getting There:

From Golden, BC drive towards the settlement of Brisco. Follow signs for Bugaboo Provincial Park in Brisco which will take you onto a good gravel road. This winds it’s way towards the Bugaboos parking lot for 45km’s. Once parked look for the chicken wire and logs held in a few corrals in the parking area. Surround the base of your vehicle with this wire and hold it in place with the logs. This is needed to stop porcupines from getting under your vehicle and nibbling on any rubber.

The hike in is exceptionally well maintained, containing ladders, hand rails and concrete steps where they are needed. The trail to the Hut is only 4.6km’s long but rises close to 700m’s in elevation. Take it steady and slow and expect to get to the hut in 2-4 hours, allow for the views on the hike to cause you to linger and stop often.

The ladder on the hike in to the Bugaboos

The ladder on the hike in to the Bugaboos

An Oasis in this Rugged Landscape:

Once at the cabin we checked in with the friendly Hut Custodian who was expecting us. He gave us a quick tour and let us know where we could sleep, store our food and hang and stash our equipment. The Hut sleeps up to 35 people hostel style and from June to September expect the Hut to be full most weekends, but it will usually be quieter from Monday to Friday. You will be sleeping shoulder to shoulder with the person next to you. This is common for every mountain hut we’ve been to.

What is uncommon about this Hut, compared to other mountain refuges we’ve visited in Canada is the amenities available. The Hut is heated and offers propane stoves to cook on with a stocked kitchen of utensils and cookware. There are also electrical outlets along the walls should you need to charge something up. For sleeping you need to bring your own sleeping bag but the mattresses for sleeping on are provided.

The Facilities in the Kitchen

The Facilities in the Kitchen

The toilets are Outhouses and there is a Pee Only Outhouse right next to the Hut and then a general use Outhouse about a 1-minute walk away.

The general use outhouse at the Conrad Kain Hut

The main outhouse at the Conrad Kain Hut

Outside there are picnic tables to eat at on warmer, clear days. If the weather is variable and you are staying near the hut for the day there is also a large boulder nearby with two bolted top rope stations installed so you can practice climbing on it.

Coopers Boulder at the Conrad Kain Hut in the Bugaboos

Coopers Boulder at the Conrad Kain Hut

From the tables in the Hut we witnessed storms roll in and pass, beautiful sunrises and sunsets and shared stories or played cards with the many people that passed through the Hut during our week long stay.

A stay at the Conrad Kain Hut is highly recommended for everyone, from the climber looking for a hassle free basecamp to the hikers looking to just spend some time in a stunning part of BC.

ACC Conrad Kain Hut in the Bugaboos

The Conrad Kain Hut just before dusk

Conclusion:

A Mountain Hut that greatly exceeded our expectations. Stunning location, many modern conveniences and memories made that will stay with us for a lifetime. The Conrad Kain Hut is a true gem tucked away in the Bugaboos of the Purcell Mountains. We’ll be sure to stay here again on our next visit to this mountain range!

Links:

Alpine Club of Canada Conrad Kain Hut

BC Parks: Bugaboos Provincial Park

More Pictures:

An oasis in an ocean of rugged mountains

An oasis in an ocean of rugged mountains

Storage outside for hiking poles and ice axes

Storage outside for hiking poles and ice axes

Wall outlets for electronic charging

Wall outlets for electronic charging

The gear storage in the evening

The gear storage in the evening

The man himself, Conrad Kain

The man himself, Conrad Kain

Author: Leigh McClurg

I grew up in County Dublin, Ireland and moved to British Columbia, Canada with my wife in 2010. I fell in love with being in the Backcountry and Mountains that are all around me here and try to spend all of my free time exploring those wild places. My main goals are to chase happiness, see as much of this planet and its cultures as possible and grow every day through knowledge and experiences.

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