Coquihalla pass is a mountain pass at an elevation of 1.244m (4,081ft) above the sea level, located in the Canadian Cascades, in British Columbia, Canada. The pass is traversed by the spectacular Coquihalla Highway.
This asphalted road is the main highway link between Kelowna in the Okanagan Valley and Vancouver B.C. Make sure you get your vehicle and yourself well-prepared before driving this road. The ascent to the Coquihalla Summit is very steep, especially from the south. The ascent is particularly steep after passing northbound through the Great Bear snow shed. Although it is a modern highway, most truckers avoid traveling on it due to the extra gasoline expense that the steep inclines create.
Due its unique location and the climb in elevation over thousands of feet, and passing through remote areas, it is important when driving in these conditions to be prepared. At high elevations it can sometimes get to be -30 deg. C in cold winter weather. The highway is pretty good, some sections have frost heaves and uneven pavement but it's 2 lanes each way so slower traffic like trucks are not an issue.
Check weather forecasts before leaving home, and remember that it becomes cooler and often more prone to storms at higher elevations. Winter surprises are a real fear, sudden snow storms, blowing snow and fog, often make winter driving hazardous and slow. Smart drivers have lots of gas, carry winter clothing, a candle (for warmth) and sleeping bag in the car ' just in case' (chances are that you will never need those extras).
The road was constructed in 1941. Careful preparation for your trip will ensure that if, and when, things do go wrong, you are prepared for the situation. Make sure your vehicle is in good shape with summer coolant and good brakes and tires.