Hiking in Vancouver

 
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Hiking in vancouver

No stay in Vancouver is complete without a hike around the local mountains: Cypress, Seymour and Grouse. If you have a few extra days, drive the Sea to Sky highway from downtown Vancouver through Stanley Park and up to Squamish and Whistler.

The entire route is packed with adventures: rent a jetski from Granville Island and zoom through the rolling Pacific; ride the sea to sky gondola up the Chief in Squamish; sway with the wind on the Capilano suspension bridge; fly through treetops on the Whistler zipline. But that's the fancy stuff. If you're just craving a good day hike, you're in luck: the mountains offer everything from a light stroll along rivers, to strenuous multi-peak treks through dense forests. 

Where to hike?

One of the best online resources for planning you next hike in Greater Vancouver. Note that "intermediate" hikes can be tough--read the comments below each hike to get a better feel for it!

One of the best online resources for planning you next hike in Greater Vancouver. Note that "intermediate" hikes can be tough--read the comments below each hike to get a better feel for it!

This nifty website really helps for picking a hike depending on region. But if you're short on time, here's a list of hikes that can't be missed.

My favorites are:

The Chief. Even shot with a crappy phone the views are amazing!

The Chief. Even shot with a crappy phone the views are amazing!

The Chief: this is the day-hike. A 11km-trail located in Squamish, you walk through forests, climb chains, walk on boulders and tackle three peaks all the while surrounded by gorgeous views of the ocean and towns below. It gets busy during summer weekends, but if you do one hike in Vancouver, this should be it. Takes about 1.5 hours from downtown Vancouver to get there.

 
From http://3.bp.blogspot.com. The ENTIRE trail is like this. 

From http://3.bp.blogspot.com. The ENTIRE trail is like this. 

Grouse Grind: the cult classic that makes you wonder "why am I doing this to myself?" It's dubbed "nature's stairmaster" for a reason: you climb a whopping 853meters in just under 3km. In under words, its stairs straight to heaven with no reprise. That said, it gives you bragging rights, and a cold beer and gondola ride (almost mandatory, because it's treacherous going down) makes it (sorta) worth it. An easy 30min drive from downtown Vancouver gets you there.

A glimpse of Garibaldi Lake from the trail.

A glimpse of Garibaldi Lake from the trail.

Garibaldi Lake: the beauty. The trail is very easy to walk, and you gain 820 meters in 18km - in other words, a pretty flat incline. It's a long hike, but you're greeted with stunning views of Garibaldi Lake surrounded by mountains and glaciers at top. Bonus points for camping overnight and hiking Panorama Ridge and Black Tusk the next two days.