• Difficulty Intermediate
  • Time 2 hours
  • Round-Trip 5km
  • Elevation Gain 175 meters
  • Season June - October
  • Camping No
  • From Vancouver 2 hours
  • Public Transit No
  • Dog Friendly Yes

Located just north of Whistler, the Ancient Cedars Trail follows a scenic, forested route that ends in a grove of massive old-growth cedar trees. The trailhead begins 4.5km up the Cougar Mountain forest service road, a gravel road that is accessible in the summer and most cars should be drive.

From the parking area, walk past the Ancient Cedars Trail sign and up the gravel path as it gently ascends for the first section before climbing steadily. The grade of the trail isn't too difficult but on a hot summer's day, it can be challenging. Continue uphill until the trail flattens and you pass a 1km marker on a tree. Pass through a flat section and follow the trail as it goes down a short hill and exits onto a wider, rocky trail.

At this junction, go right and uphill, carefully watching your step on the loose rocks. At the top, go left and follow the trail back into the forest. The trail weaves its way through the forest before passing a large rock and reaching a junction just beyond. It's worth the short walk down this side trail for a quick view of Cougar Lake and the surrounding forest.

Back on the trail, continue your hike until you reach a bridge. This is the start and end point of the loop as you will return from the trail on your right. Go straight across the bridge and, almost immediately after, look for a small waterfall from the creek to your left. Continue your hike through the forest and only a few minutes later, you arrive at the forest of several massive cedar trees. This small grove of trees was one of the few areas around Whistler not logged and some of these trails are estimated to be hundreds of years old.

Continue through the grove, taking your time to enjoy the forest. Cross the small wooden bridge and down the trail, returning to the start of the loop next to the initial bridge. Go left and retrace your footsteps back through the forest, down the steep gravel trail, making sure to go left at the junction. Up the short hill and back into the forest before descending back downhill to the parking lot area where you began.

Video clips of various sections of the Ancient Cedars Trail

How to get to Ancient Cedars Trail

Estimated Driving Time from Vancouver
2 hours

The Ancient Cedars Trail is located north of Whistler, up the Cougar Mountain FSR. From Vancouver, drive downtown and head westbound on Georgia Street, merging with the Stanley Park causeway and crossing the Lions Gate Bridge. Continue straight as the road loops around and heads into West Vancouver. At the first set of lights, turn right onto Taylor Way and drive up the hill. Look for the signs to Highway #1 and enter the highway heading westbound. Drive along the Highway until just before Horseshoe Bay, make sure to follow the signs onto Highway #99, the Sea To Sky Highway.

Settle in for a long, scenic drive north on the Sea To Sky as it continues past Lions Bay, Britannia Mine, and the town of Squamish. Keep driving north to Whistler.

From Whistler, continue driving north on the Sea To Sky and watch for Green Lake on your right, a large lake that is turquoise coloured. Just after the end of Green Lake, watch for signs on your left indicating Cougar Mountain and turn left onto the gravel road. Zero your odometer as the drive up the the forest service road to the trailhead for the Ancient Cedars Trail is about 4.5km. Drive up the gravel road and continue straight, passing the ATVs at the Canadian Outback Adventure. Eventually, you will pass a wooden cabin on the left and from here, it's only a few hundred meters to a clearing where the trail begins on the right side of the road.

View a map of Driving directions to Ancient Cedars Trail.

Traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the St̓át̓imc Tmicw (St'at'imc), Lil'wat and Skwxwú7mesh-ulh Temíx̱w (Squamish).
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Additional Info

Camping at Ancient Cedars Trail

Camping is not permitted at Ancient Cedars Trail.

Dogs at Ancient Cedars Trail

Dogs are permitted on the Ancient Cedars Trail but please keep your dog under control at all times and pick up any dog droppings to reduce the risk of attracting large, dangerous wildlife.

Toilets at Ancient Cedars Trail

There are no toilet facilities along the trail to the Ancient Cedars.

Dogs, Toilets and Camping

Although we try to keep information as current as possible, www.vancouvertrails.com makes no warranty or representation as to the availability, quality, fitness for purpose, conditions or accuracy of the information provided with respect to this trail or trails. The information provided herein is further subject to our Terms of Use.