Five Favorite Hikes in Southwestern B.C.

There comes a time when a hiker needs and even craves variety. If you are willing to go a little further afield, there are hiking gems scattered throughout the immense region of Southwestern B.C. Unfortunately, for every great hike there are innumerable lackluster, or simply bad hikes. A bad hike is especially disappointing when you have to drive a great distance to reach it. The hikes described here make the drive worthwhile almost every time.

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Hiking Mount Seymour

You can’t blame a Vancouverite for wanting to get into the mountains come summer. Think about it: For six months the sun is a fiction, so when it does finally arrive in June we want to get as close to it as we possibly can, which means scads of people ascending the beautiful peaks that grace the North Shore.

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Alexander Falls

One of Whistler’s most spectacular waterfalls is Alexander Falls, located in the Callaghan Valley region near the area where the 2010 Olympic Nordic events took place. The waterfall is easy to access by car and the viewing platform is right next to the parking lot, so no walking or hiking is required.

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Top 5 After Work Hikes

If you’re a skier, snowboarder or snowshoer, then you welcome winter in Vancouver because of the abundance of outdoor snow sports that are available to us, right in our own backyard. But even the most avid of snowhounds must admit that the dark and rainy winter days can be a bit dreary. So now that the sun is finally here, why not make the most of it? Instead of waiting until the weekend, you can fit in a hike close to the city that you can do on a weekday, right after work. Take advantage of those rays while they last!

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Othello Tunnels Near Hope – A Fun Family Hike

The Othello Tunnels are a series of old train tunnels and bridges that cut through the solid granite walls and pass over the wild Coquihalla River. They are located just east of the town of Hope, BC, in the Coquihalla Provincial Park.

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May Long Weekend Challenging Hikes

The May long weekend is almost upon us and with the recent sunny whether, you’ve done some hikes but are looking for something a bit more challenging. While the snow pack is quickly melting, there is still plenty of snow on the local mountains, creating dangerous conditions in the back-country.

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Vancouver Area Hiking Groups

The weather is finally warming, the skis / snowboard are packed away for the season, and you’re ready to get out and hike some of the local trails. One problem, it’s so hard to meet people in Vancouver with common interests, especially those who would even want to consider sweating it out on a steep mountainous climb, with the risk of getting lots of bug bites, maybe some afternoon showers, an encounter with a bear, etc. etc. etc.

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Old Home Oil Hiking Brochures

Last year, I spent some time cleaning out my grandparent’s house and I came across a time capsule of things, including some hiking trail brochures from Home Oil called the Happy Trails Collection. Being that I’m too young to remember and Google didn’t have much information, I found out from relatives that Home Oil was a gas station with multiple locations in the Vancouver area through the 70’s and 80’s. They would give out these free maps when you filled your car with gas. Apparently the maps were not just hiking trails but also maps of other BC towns and city maps for tourists.

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Great Blue Herons in Vancouver

How about a little bird watching while you’re hiking? One misconception about bird watching is it means sitting still in a bird blind (definition: a shelter used for observing wildlife) for hours with your binoculars. However, this is not true as there are plenty of examples of birds along the trails of Vancouver, such as the Great Blue Herons. With their long beaks, long legs, and large wing span, they are easy to spot and often don’t flutter away as soon as you have them in sight. The Great Blue Herons can be spotted throughout the region, including near fairly urban areas like Stanley Park.

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Capilano Canyon

Capilano River Regional Park (aka Capilano Canyon) is one of the outdoor gems of the Metro Vancouver area. It’s accessible all year, it’s trails are hiked by all ages, and it’s the closest to the city where you can enjoy a west coast style rainforest within a scenic, rugged canyon setting.

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