As any hiker knows, dirty boots are a badge of honour. They show adventure, bravery, and experience. To get a little more mud on your shoes, head on over to Vancouver, my friend, because this British Columbia city is home to dozens of killer trails. Vancouver has a vast array of scenic hiking trails ranging from easy to difficult. No matter if you want to spend a few hours or an entire day hiking in beautiful mountainsides, one of the following locations is sure to offer you an adventure you won’t soon forget.
Lynn Headwaters Regional Park
Located in North Vancouver, Lynn Headwaters Regional Park offers a 14 km hiking trail that runs beside the lovely Lynn Creek and ends at the magnificent Norvan Falls. While not overly difficult, you may encounter various muddy sections and narrow paths during your hike in the park. The crunch of the rocks beneath your boots as you weave through the thick trees is well worth it though. You may take your dog hiking with you, as long as you keep Fido on a leash at all times.
Lynn Headwaters is open from early spring to late fall, and you will want to allow yourself at least five hours in the park to experience everything it has to offer. Clean washrooms are available within the park.
Dog Mountain Trail
Also located in North Vancouver, you will find Dog Mountain Trail situated near the parking lot of Mount Seymour Ski Resort. This is an easy hiking trail at only five km long, which makes it perfect for beginning hikers or families with children. The trail has several open spaces where you can enjoy the clear skyline with the snow-capped peaks in view. You will need about two hours to complete the hike on Dog Mountain Trail.
Unlike some hiking trails, Dog Mountain Trail is open year-round and offers snowshoeing during the winter. Dogs on leashes are permitted on this trail as well, and you will find clean washrooms next to the ski resort’s parking lot. Here, you can enjoy breath taking views of such things as the Lions Gate Bridge, downtown Vancouver, and Stanley Park.
The Seawall Pathway
Just minutes from downtown Vancouver, you will find the Seawall Pathway, which is one of two hiking trails located within Stanley Park. This hiking trail is a favourite among both locals and visitors alike. A paved walkway along the Seawall Pathway will provide you with spectacular views of the Lions Gate Bridge, Northern Mountains, downtown Vancouver, and the various ships sailing in and out of port.
This is an easy trail and wheelchair-friendly. The trail is also great for bicyclists, roller bladers, and people with strollers. Seawall Pathway is about 9 km, which will take you about two or three hour to complete. This year-round excursion includes public washrooms as well as concessions.
Lighthouse Park is about 30 minutes away from Vancouver’s downtown and offers several hiking trails for individuals or families. Most trails are about 6 km and will take around two hours to traverse. However, with the area’s lush rainforest and beautiful scenery, you may want to bring a picnic lunch and make a day of it.
Hiking paths in Lighthouse Park are rated easy and are open all year long. There are washrooms in the park, and you can bring your dog so long as you keep Spot on a leash. Some of the best features of hiking in Lighthouse Park include magnificent views of the Lion’s Gate Bridge, Pacific Ocean, and of course, the Lighthouse perched on the rocks right outside the forest. If you are lucky, you may even see several Eagles during your hike!
Grouse Grind Hiking Trail
You will find Grouse Grind Hiking Trail situated on Grouse Mountain, which is in the North Shore Mountain Range. It is about 25 minutes from downtown Vancouver and is a great trail for experienced hikers. The thick forest and steep steps carved into the mountain make it an extremely difficult hike, which will take an expert hiker about two hours to finish.
The hike is a 3 km, steepharp uphill climb up Grouse Mountain. After you get to the top of the trail, you can purchase a gondola ticket to go back down. Grouse Grind Trail is open from May through September, with the gondola available from 6:15 am to 7:30 pm each day. Due to the nature of the trail, it is not wheelchair or dog-friendly.
If you love to hike and are planning to visit Vancouver, you will be happy to know that there are many terrific hiking trails in the area. Those listed above are just some of the best trails in Vancouver; however, you may also want to try out the Baden Powell Trail in Lynn Canyon Park, Eagle Bluffs near Cypress Mountains, and Deep Cove Lookout for some extra dirt on your shoes.
Which hike are you planning to tackle during your trip to Vancouver?