Lightning Lake and its neighbour, Flash Lake, are well know even to casual
visitors to Manning Park. This time we decided to penetrate farther into
the valley and leave the crowds behind on the way to Strike and Thunder Lakes.
Our journey started on Lightning Lake, we crossed the Dam and we headed to Flash
These lakes once were called the Quartet Lakes. Before 1966, the part of
Lightning Lake that sees most of Manning Park's visitors was a marsh. When
the creek was dammed, the marshland was flooded and a new lake was created.
At the end of Lightning Lake, we started our access to the south side of
Flash Lake. Here, we were looking down the trail to the water's edge to
see beaver lodges.
Then we continue our way to Strike Lake. There is a small campsite at the
end of the lake. The trail that we were walking was originally an old
trapping trail. Beaver, mink and otter, with their rich furs, were the
prized prey of early 20th-century trappers.
Somewhat removed from the others and a little lower in the valley is Thunder
Lake. Here the enclosing slopes are steep and bare, making this place to
be avoided in winter and spring due to its avalanche hazard.
Here, where the slopes are steep, it's easy to see how the lakes were once an
ancient channel left behind by receding glaciers. The lakes, it is
believed, were formed when the slopes eroded and the resulting debris blocked
the melt water.
The shore of Thunder Lake shows the evidence of highly variable water level,
with a line of logs well up the bank. A Forest Ranger told me that in
winter and spring the lake fills up and at the end of the summer the level is
really low. A heaven for trout fisherman.
On our return, we crossed the Rainbow Bridge. After 23 km you want to make
your trip as short as possible.