4.47 out of 5 - 76 reviews

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MountainHiker from New Westminster writes:

Anyone know the current water situation at the Shelter campsite?

    Posted: August 27, 2021 11:56:34 AM PST

    Kristen b from Vancouver writes:

    I went up on Sunday evening july 25 2021 and came back the next day. Took my sis that doesn’t hike much since she’s from Ontario (but reasonable fit) so it took 7 hrs up and around 6 hrs down. Going down was worse than going up. We had 30lbs bags and it just destroys the knees. If you have weak knees bring a brace! Camping was absolutely incredible. Going to alder flats was easy. It took us 2 hrs from start of trail to make it there which means it took us 5 hours of straight incline from then on. There’s a crazy amount of rocks omg you’ll hate them at the end. There’s 6 platforms to camp at the shelter area and as of right now there’s plenty of snow and a water supply up there still. I hear it sometimes dries out in late august so plan accordingly. This is a very challenging hike and the mile markers on the trail are wrong. If you see marker 1km expect another 3km just to the campsite then from camping it’s roughly another 1-2 hrs round trip to the peak back to camp. Enjoy!
    And be safe! Lots and lots of bugs that attack when you stop for a break and lots of sun exposure.

    • Golden Ears photo
    • Golden Ears photo

      Posted: July 30, 2021 08:15:24 AM PST

      Kala from Vancouver writes:

      Did this on July 18th. The last push from the tent pads to the summit took an hour, and the same on the way down. We had to get up a very steep, slushy snow covered hill on the way up, that would have been almost impossible to do without microspikes and poles. We both ended up slipping and sledding down on our butts on the way back (not intentional but kinda fun!). In all, it took us 9.5 hours including a 30 min rest at the top.

        Posted: July 26, 2021 12:35:42 PM PST

        Onassis from Surrey writes:

        My twin brother and I did this hike in September 9th when the smoke from the state wildfires were starting to get bad up in BC. But that didn't stop us from hiking this difficult and beautiful hike at the same time filming and taking photos. I highly recommend carrying lots of water because you'll be drinking lots during this difficult hike!

        Here's a video I made hiking up the summit: https://youtu.be/bVohKcgwB0A

          Posted: September 23, 2020 11:04:39 AM PST

          Koji from Vancouver writes:


          Take note that the park is only open in the wintertime between the hours of 8am and 5:30pm. It would be difficult to complete this hike within those hours even in the summer. It is possible to do this as an overnight hike, however, if you're wanting to camp in the alpine area, check https://www.avalanche.ca/ to see how risky it is. I would also check https://www.mountain-forecast.com/weather_maps/British-Columbia to see what the weather is like up there for the days you want to go.

          I went up about halfway yesterday (Jan 4, 2020) just to see what the conditions were like. The hike was wet and slippery and I didn't encounter snow until well beyond the Alder Flats, near the junction where the SAR trail is. It was fun nonetheless but given the amount of snowfall we have seen in the mountains lately, I would not recommend camping/hiking up there at this point in time. I would continuously check the two websites though, in case you want to do a winter camping trip up there sometime soon!
          Hope this information helps. :)

          Happy trails!

            Posted: January 5, 2020 02:09:51 PM PST

            Kalvin from Langley writes:

            Was thinking of doing this hike in January, how possible is that?

              Posted: November 9, 2019 06:50:08 PM PST

              James H from Derby writes:

              Great and challenging hike. Made it up in exactly 4 hours and down in another 4. 9 Hours total including the stops. I pushed it hard going up as was worried about time, but the listed '12 hours' is a little generous if you are fit.

              The trail is easy to follow until past the shelter. From there the markers almost disappear and the scramble up the rocks is somewhat blind. Also note that for some reason the marked trail on vancouvertrails is only until the hut. There is another hour to go past that, around 400m of steep uphill.

              There was still enough snowmelt up top to fill up water bottles from, but there is a big gap between that and around 6km when you pass the last stream. As others have said, bring plenty of water!

              The view from the top makes it worth all the challenge it deals.

              • Golden Ears photo
              • Golden Ears photo

                Posted: September 3, 2019 06:59:20 PM PST

                Alexandru Nagy from Coquitlam writes:

                I have been up Golden Ears many times. Both in winter and summer. On July 20th, 2019 my brother, friend and I did the hike as a trail run up and back in 9 hours. We always start from Gold Creek parking lot. We did a total distance of 28km.

                Perfect weather! Still good patches of snow up there. Nothing that requires technical equipment.

                Put a video together of our run. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvK3Md5xwI8&t=836s

                  Posted: August 12, 2019 09:57:03 AM PST

                  Ian Thom from Vancouver writes:

                  Backpacked to Panorama Ridge to camp on Saturday - arrived about 3:15 pm to a lot of campers. Tent pads full, but plenty of surrounding spots to setup camp. Abundant snowmelt off the waterfall for treating and drinking. Used the hut to hang food items and keep mice from the tent. Some mosquitoes in the afternoon, but manageable. Incredible sunset from the ridge.
                  Challenging hike, but worth every step.

                  • Golden Ears photo

                    Posted: August 6, 2019 09:55:17 AM PST

                    Nilufar and Naser from Port Coquitlam writes:

                    On Saturday me and my husband did the round hike it’s was a little hard but excited. We started at 9:24am and finished at 10:17pm. Was a little scared of darkness:) But we made it ! Was beautiful!

                    • Golden Ears photo

                      Posted: August 5, 2019 01:41:13 PM PST

                      Alana from Port Coquitlam writes:

                      Was up to the emergency shelter yesterday. Amazing hike. Question though - what do people do in concern to food storage at the tent pads at Panorama? Nowhere to hang it/store it ... I'm new to backpacking, but would love to camp here before the summer's out.

                      • Golden Ears photo

                        Posted: August 4, 2019 10:34:04 AM PST

                        sean from Surrey writes:

                        Came down today. Summited this morning. Tough hike. Lots of mosquitoes. Abundant mice at panorama tent pad. Snowfields are easy. Lots of good water at panorama. Trail could use some attention

                        • Golden Ears photo
                        • Golden Ears photo

                          Posted: July 16, 2019 05:02:19 PM PST

                          Garret from Vancouver writes:

                          Looking to do this hike this weekend July 16/17. Has anyone done it recently? What are snow pack conditions like at the top? Are the mosquitos bad by alder flats?

                            Posted: July 16, 2019 03:57:03 PM PST

                            Evan from Vancouver writes:

                            Hiked June 21st, trail is well marked and no snow until panorama ridge/emergency shelter. Significant snowfield before the peak still, summitting is possible with snowshoes or ice axe. Once you cross the snowfield the ridgeline and peak itself are snowfree. Significant elevation gain but the views at the top make it worth it!

                              Posted: June 22, 2019 11:22:11 AM PST

                              JerSiu from Burnbay writes:

                              Went on June 3rd

                              The trail is still completely covered in snow for the last 2KM to the emergency shelter and probably patches of snow for 2 KM prior to that. The trail isn't as well marked for the final 2KM as the snow is covering a lot of the tracks. We were lucky enough to be able to follow a set of footprints that someone previously had completed in order to guide us.

                              There is no water source after Alder Flats campground, and we were not able to confirm if there was water at the emergency shelter, thinking it may be frozen over. Hiking all the way to the shelter is not advised without proper snow equipment. You can hike to the first or second peak 2-3 hrs beyond Alder flats without gear and still get some nice views, just not all the way to the shelter/campsites.

                                Posted: June 7, 2019 11:31:04 AM PST

                                Greg from Surrey writes:

                                Yes, Also curious about the hike to the peak ATM, looking to go this weekend as well... June.1st


                                  Posted: May 28, 2019 12:45:36 PM PST

                                  Chelsea from Mission writes:

                                  Looking to hike to and camp at panorama ridge June 1st. Wondering if anyone has hiked recently and what the conditions are approaching the ridge. Suggestions? Thanks!

                                    Posted: May 22, 2019 10:07:13 PM PST

                                    TW from Vancouver writes:

                                    A few comments after doing this hike on September 29th 2018.

                                    There was no need to cross any snowfield to gain Panorama Ridge / the Golden Ears summit. (No guarantee you will have the same conditions, of course.)

                                    I marked the vertical and distance to the emergency shelter from the parking lot at around 1160 meters and 11.5 km respectively, which is a bit shorter than the article suggests.

                                    Ascent to Panorama Ridge itself was about another 275 meters vertical / 0.9 km distance (including one diversion to a minor viewpoint to lookers right below the large snowfield).

                                    Route finding is straightforward but the terrain is more challenging than Wedgemount Lake (which in turn is more challenging than Panorama Ridge). Some steep sections with minor (i.e. Grade 1) scrambling but little exposure.

                                    I suggest taking plenty of water. I had 2.5 liters which was nowhere near enough.

                                    I encountered high winds above the hut and particularly on the ridge itself.

                                    Parking lot to Alder Flats took around 1h 10mins. From there to the hut took 2h 1min. Complete round trip took 7h 32mins with numerous stops for photos and a couple of diversions to visit two minor viewpoints above the hut. This was in fairly benign conditions (trail and rocks not slippery, no snow). YMMV.

                                      Posted: September 30, 2018 01:00:52 PM PST

                                      Mel from North Vancouver writes:

                                      Hiked this one again today and finally got some views. Just spectacular on a clear day up at the peak. 4 hours 40 mins from car to peak, 4 hours peak to car. Well worth the grind

                                      • Golden Ears photo
                                      • Golden Ears photo
                                      • Golden Ears photo

                                        Posted: September 26, 2018 08:03:50 PM PST

                                        RS from OB writes:

                                        @Samantha , It is Raven Lake

                                          Posted: August 28, 2018 10:47:30 AM PST

                                          Samantha from Vancouver writes:

                                          Went up Golden ears recently and noticed a lake near the area. Wondering what it is called and how I can get there. Does anyone know?

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                                            Posted: August 21, 2018 10:27:36 AM PST

                                            Mel from North Vancouver writes:

                                            Nike challenging hike. Very foggy up top so will be doing this again on a clear day. Took our group just a bit under 5 hours to get from parking lot to summit with a few water and picture breaks. Puppy made it to emergency shelter with ease but I backpacked her up to the peak and down. Crossing snowfield was not necessary as we could easily go around what was left of it. Pretty easy up to Alder Flats and getting steeper after that. I drank almost 5 liters of water and it wasn’t that hot so bring lots of water.

                                            • Golden Ears photo
                                            • Golden Ears photo
                                            • Golden Ears photo

                                              Posted: August 13, 2018 02:40:44 PM PST

                                              Steve from Langley writes:

                                              Went up August 4-5. Had perfect conditions. This may be my favourite hike I've done. A perfect mix of challenge, technicality, and payoff.

                                                Posted: August 10, 2018 12:40:54 PM PST

                                                Samantha from Vancouver writes:

                                                Did this hike in a day with bf. Took us 13 hrs because we started late around 9:30am. About an hour back in the dark thank goodness for cell phone lights. Had 5 mins to drive to the gate in time for closing at 11pm. I would recommend crampons cause there is still snow which would make the trip faster going up. We slid down the snow coming down. Everything is good and steady until the last hour going up. Super sketchy rock climbing skills needed. Overall, a great sense of accomplishment.

                                                  Posted: August 7, 2018 12:20:06 PM PST

                                                  Ashley from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                  Gorgeous hike. Took 5 hours going up and 5 down but that was going at a slow pace and taking lots of breaks in both directions. We camped at the top on one of the wooden pads that they recently added. There are 4 that are uncovered of snow and 2 that are still majority covered.
                                                  The last few km going up were practically climbing using all 4 limbs.There is still a lot of snow once you reach panorama ridge and the trail to the peak is still covered under the snow so you have to make your own trail until you can find it along the left side. Water was not an issue as long as you bring some sort of filter as there is a steady waterfall stream at right by the emergency shelter.
                                                  ***Warning: The bugs were horrible. Make sure you pack lots of bug spray!***

                                                    Posted: July 13, 2018 09:53:23 PM PST

                                                    Ryan from Richmond writes:

                                                    Hiked on July 2nd/3rd. Certainly a difficult hike, but it is a great challenge for anyone looking to push their boundaries beyond conventional hike camping as you will reach the alpine and be required to do some basic scrambling before you reach the shelter. If planning to summit I would suggest spikes, but that depends on how comfortable you are off trail. Definitely possible without. Our group of 4 brought 3 small dogs (15-40 lbs). All dogs made it to the shelter but not without a struggle. I would advise others bringing dogs to ensure they are adept at this kind of activity, as ours seemed to have reached their limit during the last km.
                                                    The bugs were really bad during sections but cleared up once on the ridge.
                                                    Highly recommended for those equipped.

                                                      Posted: July 11, 2018 08:10:47 PM PST

                                                      Jessie from Langley writes:

                                                      ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL!!
                                                      We hiked up it June 26-27 2018 and it was breathtaking. Definitely a difficult hike and I will be sore for quite a few days but it was so worth the moans and groans and I’m already finding a day to go back.
                                                      The beginning 6km are not difficult at all and it brings you to a nice group of campsites and a fast flowing stream for water. From 6km-12km it gets steep and hard and there is no running water (at least not in June) the whole way. There are some beautiful lookouts along the route as well. Once up at the campsite, there were 2 1/2 camping platforms that weren’t covered by snow. The emergency shelter was so clean and a lot bigger than I imagined, though it’s not a place to bank of sleeping in, thus why its called “emergency” shelter. There is also a toilet at the top, though no toilet paper. It was still a steep 45 minute hike from the emergency shelter to the very top, something we did the following morning and managed to slide down on our bums on the way back down, which was both scary and exciting.
                                                      We also brought our dog (~25lb, very active) with no issues. Twice up and three times down we had to help her through tough spots (eg. at the 10km mark there is a vertical ladder that she couldnt climb herself) but she managed to do it and slept a good 12 hours when we got home. If you are bringing a pet, be sure to have warm clothes for them at night, since it does get colder than most hikes, and your tent is completely exposed, meaning there is lots of wind blowing on your tent throughout the night. Also, I wouldnt recommend dogs smaller than 20lb or so, since some sections get very steep with little areas for grip.
                                                      Overall (after all my bla bla bla), I would highly recommend this hike to an experienced hiker. It is definitely not one to do as an initial hike (day hike or overnight) and not one to do unprepared. Even as a day hike, bring a stove to melt ice and filtration tabs/device, as you will go 12 km (last 6 up, first 6 down) without running water.
                                                      Already planning my next trip up and I can’t wait!!!

                                                      • Golden Ears photo
                                                      • Golden Ears photo
                                                      • Golden Ears photo

                                                        Posted: June 30, 2018 05:29:18 PM PST

                                                        Ian from Vancouver writes:

                                                        Completed this hike on June 15th and 16th, 2018. I camped on Panorama Ridge for the night very close to the emergency shelter. The camp ground was still completely covered in snow. There was however some exposed rock near the shelter, which was a convenient place to sit and cook.

                                                        The hike up was quite challenging. It was very mellow until Alder Flats then started to climb quite substantially. The trail was snow free until about 80% of the total distance, just before getting to the top of the ridge. The trail is well marked and it is easy to follow the footsteps in the snow. The snow was fairly deep still up on the ridge and the last 2km was quite challenging. There was a section just before the emergency hut that is quite exposed and it is a bit sketchy, it did feel quite risky to cross it with my 35lb pack.

                                                        The way down was hard through the snowy sections as it was easy to slip and sink in the deep snow. I did lose the trail once just before the ridge and ended up almost lost down a steep valley. I did however find the trail again by retracing my steps to the last trail marker.

                                                        There is no water source up at the top other than melting snow or finding a drip.

                                                        The total trips took me around 4.5hrs up and 4 hrs down with minimal breaks.

                                                        This is a great trail and definitely could be done as a day hike. Staying up at the top was a amazing experience though. The view in the morning after waking up from the most peaceful sleep, and the sunset were the highlights for me!

                                                          Posted: June 19, 2018 01:20:17 PM PST

                                                          Brian Baek from Burnaby writes:

                                                          Great hike, however it was very challenging. I managed to summit the mountain on the 19th of May by myself, pretty dumb of me as I did not have all the necessary equipment (I was missing an ice axe, and instead was using two trekking poles).

                                                          Hiking to the summit of Golden Ears in May was quite challenging and is not recommended without the proper equipment. Once I reached the snow there was a lot of walking up steep snow hills. However, the last km or so was quite sketchy. There are sections where the amount of exposure would make you question yourself, and only the riskiest of risk takers would answer that question in a positive response. Furthermore, in the the last ~400m of the hike I encountered a ~75 degree vertical climb for about 100m which required me to do a lot of front pointing with my crampons and trying not to look down. After that the angle of climb became less extreme, however the amount of serious exposure increased. The view I got was breathtaking even though it was cloudy, I will be returning to the peak on a sunny day in the hopes of spending the night at the top.

                                                          In terms of the snow conditions, the snow was very soft which made my feet sink quite a bit (gaiters really helped), and near the top it was noticeably icy under a thin layer of snow. Crampons and an ice axe would be my suggested minimum requirement, but you may get away with using trekking poles depending on your skill and fitness level. Also, having a rope and a harness with you would be a good idea just in case something does happen.

                                                          All in all climbing Golden Ears was tough, but definitely worth it.

                                                          • Golden Ears photo
                                                          • Golden Ears photo
                                                          • Golden Ears photo

                                                            Posted: May 23, 2018 08:27:17 PM PST

                                                            Amber from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                            My boyfriend and I did this trail in the summer (mid-August). We spent the night on panorama ridge because I wanted to watch the sunset - we were not disappointed. The hike was difficult for me while my boyfriend did without needing a break somehow. took us 11 hours in total to summit golden ears. An AMAZING hike with amazing views, I definitely recommend. This can be done in 1 day but I definitely recommend starting early (7 am) if you plan to do it in one day.

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                                                            • Golden Ears photo
                                                            • Golden Ears photo

                                                              Posted: February 3, 2018 11:42:36 PM PST

                                                              Hunter from Vancouver writes:

                                                              My roommate and I decided to spend a couple nights at Golden Ears this Thanksgiving long weekend. We had a late-ish start on the Saturday morning (left the West Canyon parking lot at around 9:30 AM) and made it to Alder Flats before noon. We spent our first night there, with the intent to hike up to Panorama Ridge the next day for our final night.

                                                              I would classify the approx. 6km hike to Alder Flats from the parking lot as being very straightforward and not much of a challenge, but the trail becomes quite steep and unpredictable beyond that. I would highly recommend packing light for this latter portion of the trip. Our packs were between 45 and 50lbs, and made for a tiring ascent and descent. In the 5.5 km between Alder Flats to the emergency shelter near the summit, you will almost constantly be gaining elevation -- and quickly. There are very few moments of respite, and the relentless uphill can be a challenge. As well, there are several sections where you'll need to take your time, and use your hands and knees to clamber up and down slippery rocks and roots. A couple of these climbing sections skirted some very steep drops, so patience and confidence is a must. I've read some comments here that sections of the trail are poorly marked. This must have improved recently, as we found the markers very visible, and at a close proximity to each other.

                                                              Up on the ridge, we were pleasantly surprised to see that the BC Parks had installed some tent pads fairly recently. That said, the placement of the pads leaves something to be desired, as none are particularly sheltered, but are rather exposed to the wind and weather. We all secured our tents to the pads with para-cord, but there were still moments of uncertainty during the night when the wind really picked up. Also, despite it being well into October, the pads were all spoken for by the time evening hit. You may wish to arrive earlier than later to increase your chances of getting a pad. The emergency shelter is a great thing to have at hand, but should only be used as accommodation in an emergency. With that said, we were grateful to have the shelter to get out of the wind while we cooked our dinner and got warm. Also, the issues with the composting toilet being over-full, that some other reviewers have mentioned, doesn't seem to be a problem at the moment.

                                                              The descent -- especially the extra long rocky riverbank traversal, as another reviewer mentioned -- back to Alder Flats is really tough on the legs (especially with a heavy pack). Make sure you have the energy for the climb down, and that your legs aren't cramping or overly shaky. Next time, I would definitely eschew some luxuries and focus on packing light light light.

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                                                                Posted: October 10, 2017 01:40:44 PM PST

                                                                Relika McNulty from Port Coquitlam writes:

                                                                Would that be a hike that I could do alone? Can't find anyone to go with me tomorrow or Sunday so I'm just wondering if I should just go on my own. I am used to trekking alone but on shorter and milder trails (Diez Vistas, The Lions etc). Not a complete novice but would not call myself an expert either.

                                                                Will I see many people on trail it would it be solitary climb like Dilly Dally Loop?

                                                                Thanks for any advice.

                                                                  Posted: September 15, 2017 05:11:19 PM PST

                                                                  Vincenzo from Vancouver writes:

                                                                  Day-hiked this trail yesterday in 11 hours. There's no snow until after the emergency shelter, and what snow is after the shelter is avoidable. The view from the top was spectacular, and not hindered much by the smoke from the forest fires. There were some biting flies at higher elevations that were a minor hinderance, but were manageable.

                                                                    Posted: August 13, 2017 12:30:58 PM PST

                                                                    Charles F from North Vancouver writes:

                                                                    We made it there alive on July 15th. LOTS of freaking flies when clear skies in between the 8km mark and the ridge, making it unbearable to stop. The last 3-4kms before the ridge are very rough, lots of walls to climb, definitely earns its "difficult" rating. The ridge itself is covered in snow, there's limited spots to put your tent out of the snow, so be ready to set in the snow if you do the trail soon. Temperature dropped under 10ºc at night, we had multiple layers of warms clothes, and pants.

                                                                    The view from there is incredible, it's completely worth all the effort and complications.

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                                                                      Posted: July 17, 2017 01:46:49 PM PST

                                                                      Oskar from Vancouver writes:

                                                                      Made it to the peak of the summit yesterday it was a nice clear day and the 360 view was amazing. This was my first hike although in good shape with climbing skill, it was difficult at the ice and snow patch before the final rocks to summit. Your hands get cold at the final stretch in the snow and ice, definety some gloves or Equiptment would have helped. There was a ton of snow and ice up there in mid July. Other difficulties were tons of flies at midpoint to about the shelter and just the stamina to finish off the trail.Took us exactly 12 hours with about 4 breaks for food, water, photos from the gold creek parking lot. 6.5 hours to summit and 5.5 hours back. We were a group of four ages 21,26,48,57 and a dog. We all made it to the top but the dog only got to right before the rocks to summit.

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                                                                      • Golden Ears photo
                                                                      • Golden Ears photo

                                                                        Posted: July 16, 2017 12:25:39 PM PST

                                                                        Nehme from Vancouver writes:

                                                                        Hiked this trail yesterday. The way to Panorama ridge is mostly free of snow but there is still some. After that, there is a lot of snow on the way to the top of Golden Ears. I highly recommend poles for going up the steep snow. It's a bit more challenging on the way down but we managed by sliding down some of the steep snow (make sure you're not near a ridge). The view at the top is spectacular 360!

                                                                        p.s. It took us around 9 and a half hours at fast pace (hiking, no running).

                                                                        • Golden Ears photo
                                                                        • Golden Ears photo

                                                                          Posted: July 16, 2017 10:10:21 AM PST

                                                                          Georgia from Ontario writes:

                                                                          Hiked to the ridge on July 5! Very beautiful but lots and lots of little bugs. Annoying but didn't bite. Still too snowy to do the summit but the ridge offers stunning 360 mountain views. Patchy snow to the ridge but doable with boots.

                                                                            Posted: July 6, 2017 07:17:59 PM PST

                                                                            Kelly from VANCOUVER writes:

                                                                            Hiked the trail this weekend. Still quite a bit of snow on the ridge but doable with good shoes, preferably spikes/crampons. Made it to emergency shelter. Probably best to start early, we started from the beach before 6am and snow was fairly good going up but really slushy on way back. Met a few people who camped up top. Hope that helps!

                                                                              Posted: July 3, 2017 08:52:06 PM PST

                                                                              Jason from North Van writes:

                                                                              Have anyone hiked the trail in the past few days? Wondering how's the snow condition up there. And if it's possible to camp. Thanks a lot.

                                                                                Posted: July 3, 2017 05:40:43 PM PST

                                                                                Jane from Burnaby writes:

                                                                                Hi,were planning to hike this June 1st....where can we pay an overnight stay.Thankyou soo much

                                                                                  Posted: June 27, 2017 10:28:20 PM PST

                                                                                  Kayla from Ridge writes:

                                                                                  Hey has anyone done this week hike recently I'm just wondering about the current condition lookng to do the hike in a week or so

                                                                                    Posted: June 13, 2017 03:07:18 PM PST

                                                                                    Richard Vander veen from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                    I did this hike Sept 20 2016 .I have done many many hikes in the lower mainland my self and this hike was a total surprise .Started at 10 am and was back at the parking lot around 6 pm .Very steep terrain and you must pay attention to the orange markers ,At one point coming back down I was lost for around 10 min ,In that case just hike back up until you see any orange markers keep calm and then start to go down sure enough I saw more markers and followed back down Thank god .When I arrived at the hut I hiked almost to the summit but it is not well marked at all so I stopped there had lunch hiked back down .I was worried about darkness and since being on my own I did the right decision .A lot of scrambling once you past the emergency hut . I also started to get leg cramps .WHICH WAS A SCARE .I ate a bannana and a cliff bar .Ii put in a electrolyte tablet in about 2 hours on the way down the cramps settled down some what ,This is a huge hike for one day with 24 k and 1500 vertical . I would like to know is it 12 ks to the emergency hut only ? Thanks Rick.

                                                                                      Posted: September 22, 2016 07:47:44 AM PST

                                                                                      Nicola from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                                                      My friends and I are planning on sleeping at the top on October first. I am wondering if anyone has summited recently (mid September) and if so is there water/snow at the top? We are wondering how much water to bring.

                                                                                        Posted: September 11, 2016 09:33:23 PM PST

                                                                                        YG from Surrey writes:

                                                                                        Did it on Aug 28, 2016. It was a cloudy day, but that did not stop us. We started to climb at 7:30 am it took up 4h to get to the cabin/shelter. We encounter several hikers coming down on our way up. It seems that lots of people prefer to camp overnight which is understandable since the hike is not easy. The path starts real nice; then it gets tough after the 6km mark. Make sure to follow the signs, so you don't get lost. I only drank 2L out of my 3L of water. After the cabin it took us 45min to reach the top, it was cloudy at first, but once it cleared up the view was breath taken. Make sure to save energy for the hike down, it was truly a challenge, plus it started to rain, so everything was slippery.
                                                                                        The whole trip was done in little more than 10h.
                                                                                        BTW make sure to bring a marker to record your time and leave a message for future hikers to see inside the cabin/shelter.
                                                                                        Good luck and have a good hike.

                                                                                          Posted: August 30, 2016 01:38:43 AM PST

                                                                                          YG from Surrey writes:

                                                                                          Did it on Aug 28, 2016. It was a cloudy day, but that did not stop us. We started to climb at 7:30 am it took up 4h to get to the cabin/shelter. We encounter several hikers coming down on our way up. It seems that lots of people prefer to camp overnight which is understandable since the hike is not easy. The path starts real nice; then it gets tough after the 6km mark. Make sure to follow the signs, so you don't get lost. I only drank 2L out of my 3L of water. After the cabin it took us 45min to reach the top, it was cloudy at first, but once it cleared up the view was breath taken. Make sure to save energy for the hike down, it was truly a challenge, plus it started to rain, so everything was slippery.
                                                                                          The whole trip was done in little more than 10h.
                                                                                          BTW make sure to bring a marker to record your time and leave a message for future hikers to see inside the cabin/shelter.
                                                                                          Good luck and have a good hike.

                                                                                            Posted: August 29, 2016 01:40:41 PM PST

                                                                                            Stephen from Surrey writes:

                                                                                            Spent the night up on the ridge on Friday night, and summited (in the fog) on Saturday morning. Still steady snowmelt runoff just past the shelter.

                                                                                            I went last year in October, probably shortly after the post-summer cleanup of the shelter and surrounding area. This year, the camping area and shelter at Panorama Ridge are despicable! Garbage left everywhere. I camped a kilometre down the ridge and saw discarded sleeping bags, bottles, and assorted trash in the bushes. The outhouse is full to the brim - almost definitely due to idiots leaving garbage in the toilet.

                                                                                            I appreciate that websites like this help more hikers access the beautiful areas around Vancouver, but some more emphasis should be placed on "leave no trace" hiking and camping. Please - show some respect to Mother Nature and the other people enjoying the trails! It is not difficult to pack out what you packed in (or more, if you're generous).

                                                                                              Posted: August 29, 2016 12:41:35 PM PST

                                                                                              Dave from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                              Made it up earlier today. Good fun and chatted with a lot of friendly people.

                                                                                              The first bit beyond the emergency hut is quite poorly marked. You'll typically want to hold left, climbing along the ridge up to the summit. I took a bad turn and ended up doing some unplanned rock climbing to get back on the trail!

                                                                                              If you're hoping to reach the summit, you'll want to get an early start, and only go up on clear days. If it gets cloudy, it can obscure the way up at the top, and that'll only lead to trouble.

                                                                                              As of right now, the trail conditions are quite good. There's still snow at the top, but you don't need to walk over any of it on the way to the summit. The melt also provides for some drinking water if you've got a filter. Wouldn't rely on this if you're reading at any time other than of this writing though, as conditions will have likely changed.

                                                                                              At a moderate pace with few breaks, took about 5h10m to the summit, and about 10h15m round trip. As an adult male, I needed about 3.5L of water to complete the trail on a ~21C day. Good luck!

                                                                                                Posted: August 22, 2016 02:54:50 AM PST

                                                                                                Emily from Abbotsford writes:


                                                                                                What an amazing hike! Hiked it on July 24. Stayed on the ridge and had a beautiful view right out the tent to Pitt Lake and the mountains beyond. First time overnighters and it was a blast.

                                                                                                Took us about 4.5hr to the ridge and then 2 hours roundtrip from ridge to top back to ridge. Going to the top was rough due to snow and rocks, take your time. It's well worth the view! =]


                                                                                                  Posted: August 16, 2016 10:36:07 AM PST

                                                                                                  G from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                  Hi all!

                                                                                                  How long does it take to get from the West canyon parking lot to Panorama ridge?
                                                                                                  And from the ridge to the summit?

                                                                                                    Posted: August 11, 2016 06:01:03 PM PST

                                                                                                    Paige Catlin from Burnaby writes:

                                                                                                    Trail was great! Hiked up all the way to the peak, beautiful views!!!!! I also LEFT MY CAMERA in the parking lot if anyone has found it please call me at 6048363945. Its very precious to me so please if you find it let me know!

                                                                                                    thank you!

                                                                                                      Posted: August 1, 2016 09:55:53 PM PST

                                                                                                      Rosy Biesty from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                                                                      There are no trees in Panorama Ridge, it is above the tree line. We hiked up three times. Only made it up once. Took me 13 hours round trip to the top, but was slowed down by the snow above the hut 2 years go.

                                                                                                      Haven't seen bears up there , but passed hikers who had. Well worth the hike.

                                                                                                        Posted: July 21, 2016 12:57:04 AM PST

                                                                                                        Rosy Biesty from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                                                                        There are no trees in Panorama Ridge, it is above the tree line. We hiked up three times. Only made it up once. Took me 13 hours round trip to the top, but was slowed down by the snow above the hut 2 years go.

                                                                                                        Haven't seen bears up there , but passed hikers who had. Well worth the hike.

                                                                                                          Posted: July 21, 2016 12:49:45 AM PST

                                                                                                          Ashley from Burnaby writes:

                                                                                                          I have a sleeping hammock to camp in, was hoping to stay at Panorama Ridge. Does anyone know if finding trees to tie to will be an issue?

                                                                                                          Thanks for any help!

                                                                                                            Posted: July 15, 2016 09:48:51 AM PST

                                                                                                            Judi from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                            Can anyone tell me if they have seen bears on hike? Just wondering where to store food

                                                                                                              Posted: July 13, 2016 05:23:50 PM PST

                                                                                                              Richard from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                              Hiked Golden ears on the 18th of June with 3 other people.
                                                                                                              The day started overcast but half way up the rain began and gradually became worse making the trail quite slippy.
                                                                                                              At around the 9km mark the snow begins but it is quite compacted up to the shelter (a good pair of waterproof boots are needed).
                                                                                                              If you are planning on going pass the shelter, then crampons are a must as it gets quite tricky along the trail to the peak (which hasn't been traveled by many people throughout the winter season). Near the peak be very careful to stay away from edges of the cliff faces as there are a lot of overhanging snow banks.

                                                                                                              It will be well into July before all the snow melts (at the earliest). It is a quite a long hike a good level of fitness is needed. If you are going over the next week be careful as the rainfall was so heavy, there were lots of large puddles the entire way down and the trail paths were like streams all the way down.
                                                                                                              We didn't have good weather that day but the views are incredible normally.

                                                                                                                Posted: June 19, 2016 11:35:04 PM PST

                                                                                                                Brendan from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                June 5th, 2016
                                                                                                                4 of us went Car to hut in about 5.5hrs including a lunch break. 4.5 back down with a lot of stops to cool off.

                                                                                                                This was a very hot day. We were happy to find ourselves in tree cover for most of trek up to the start of the ridge but from there it was pretty exposed.

                                                                                                                This is a very challenging trail after alder flats and the heat didn't help. Snow line started at the base of the ridge and made for some slippery going. Slush can give out in places causing one to step into a hole. We could probably have pushed on to the peak but within crampons we didn't think it was safe. Plus, the flies were so bad on the ridge that we couldn't take much more. One of our guys seemed to be allergic and was losing his mind!

                                                                                                                You definitely want to bring sunglasses and a hat as its bright and exposed up high. I would recommend you visit a dollar store and snag some mosquito hats - you will thank me. Maybe you could eve sell some for $20 up there.

                                                                                                                There was easy water sources up until alder flats. There are a few more beyond but they are trickles so full up at the flats.

                                                                                                                  Posted: June 6, 2016 01:34:05 AM PST

                                                                                                                  David from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                  Made the roundtrip hike to summit on 21 May, 2016. Snow begins as the trail reaches the top of the ridge. Snow was consistent all the way to the top except for a few short scramble sections at the very top to achieve the summit. Beyond the emergency shelter I used crampons and ice ax, but more as a physical aid than as a safety necessity; a few others hikers comfortably reached the top without them. Snow sections are fairly compacted, but gaiters were useful for keeping feet dry when the snow loosened up in the afternoon.

                                                                                                                  Doing the whole hike roundtrip makes for a long day for the average hiker given the length of trail and elevation gain. Consider breaking it up over two days if you like to take your time. I prefer to hike light and sleep in a bed, so for me the long day is worth it.

                                                                                                                    Posted: May 22, 2016 12:21:22 PM PST

                                                                                                                    Greg Curtiss from Coquitlam writes:

                                                                                                                    Just hiked this trail May 14/2016. Trail is in very good condition up to the small viewpoint near 9 km mark ( elevation 3020 ft). At this point the ground is still pretty damp and the bugs are quite heavy. Had reports from groups coming down that the snow line was approx 20 min further ahead with snow depths remaining of 6-10 feet on the ridge. Further uphill travel would require gaiters with micro-spikes, hiking poles or ice axe. Difficult route finding. My first time hiking in this area. Very nice day hike with a few dramatic views on a well marked and maintained trail.
                                                                                                                    Noticeable increase in difficulty and steeper grade past Alder Flats. Important to note gate to this park is locked from 11 PM until 7 AM so early starts require sleeping inside the park gate.

                                                                                                                      Posted: May 16, 2016 09:47:59 AM PST

                                                                                                                      Kate from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                                                                                      Hiked to Alder Flats with my boyfriend today(2016/01/03). We've had nothing but sunshine for the last week or so, so the trail was fairly packed down and slippery in spots. We just had hikers and it was fine as long as we watched our footing. Crampons would have been helpful but we didn't need snow shoes to get right up to the helipad at Alder Flats. According to the trail markers it's about 5.5 km to AF. It took us 4 hours round trip with some breaks for photos and a snack at the top. We got to the fork for the lower valley trail at about one hour in, Gold Creek Lookout at 1hr20, to the top by 2hrs, back to the fork at 3hrs20 and out by 4hrs (to the minute, actually).
                                                                                                                      My boyfriend wanted to add that "it was a magical winter wonderland" hah but it really was quite scenic the whole way through. Highly recommended and we didn't find it all that difficult.

                                                                                                                        Posted: January 3, 2016 11:14:24 PM PST

                                                                                                                        Georgia from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                        I did this hike last weekend. Some info!

                                                                                                                        The first part of the hike to Alder Flats is very easy and only took about 1.5 hours. The next section to the start of the stairs was a little more steep but still quite straightforward. From the stairs on it got very steep, quite slippery and required quite a bit of scrambling up very steep rocks and tree roots. Hands and feet all needed to be involved to climb up.

                                                                                                                        My husband and I are fairly average hikers, not super fit, and the hike from the carpark to the emergency hut took us about 5.5 hours. We met some people up the top who took 4.5 hours so if you're fit you could get up there fairly fast!

                                                                                                                        We were some of the first people to the campsite at about 1pm, but people kept arriving until almost sunset. There are some good grassy spots to camp just beyond the emergency shelter, a few grassy good spots between the stairs and the emergency shelter and a few rocky spots around the emergency shelter. We counted between 15 and 20 tents in the area, so quite a few campers! There aren't any good spots to hang food from bears and animals, but you can put it in the emergency shelter. The porta-pottie at the emergency shelter is disgusting. It's almost full to seat level with every human secretion you can think of, along with rubbish and food scraps. Be prepared.

                                                                                                                        We were planning to hike to the summit in the morning but a few other campers told us it's very often misty in the mornings and the early afternoon usually has the clearest sky and best views. We took their advice and continued the hike to the summit that afternoon, which took maybe another 45 min or so. The view is amazing- all the way to the Island, Mt Baker and other mountains/glaciers/alpine lakes in every other direction.

                                                                                                                        There is no snow between the emergency shelter and the summit at all. This means the scramble up is very manageable if you're comfortable with scrambling- it's not slippery and there are good foot and hand holds. However the water is a little sparse; there are a few small trickles running between the emergency hut and the summit (maybe 10 mins up) but you'd want to bring a pump or purifying tablets.

                                                                                                                        The sunset and sunrise were beautiful from the campsites. Amazing.

                                                                                                                        On our second day, the fog was only lifting close to midday (we were most the way down by then) so I'm glad we summited in the evening. It took us 4.75 hours to descend, mostly getting down the section between the camp and the stairs.

                                                                                                                        We saw kids as young as 10, adults in their 50s or 60s, tiny dogs (who needed to be carried in some areas) and larger dogs. Seemed to be fairly accessible as long as you're relatively fit and sure footed. Highly recommended.

                                                                                                                          Posted: September 13, 2015 06:45:42 PM PST

                                                                                                                          Dom from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                          Completed this hike including the summit last weekend. Note that the "permanent" snow field is non-existent this year.

                                                                                                                          Was very impressed by how well marked it is, although from panorama ridge to summit is less so.

                                                                                                                          Beautiful views for a large proportion of the hike, unlike many of the hikes in the lower mainland which are almost all in the tree line. Would concur with what others have said about leaving lots of time.; we finished around 5pm and even then we were losing a lot of light in the final few kilometers.

                                                                                                                            Posted: August 19, 2015 05:16:39 PM PST

                                                                                                                            Graham from Maple Ridge writes:

                                                                                                                            Diabetic - 39 years old. 6 sweet and salty granola bars, and two Knorr sidekick meals. One small bag of beef jerky. Hiked this trail on August 7th to 8th 2015. Myself, a bud, and his two daughters. Left the parking lot at 4pm and arrived at alder flats with all of our camping gear. Camped over night with the plan to leave our extra gear in the tent while we did the summit.

                                                                                                                            Late that night (11:30 or so?) we heard a loud bang and our tent lit up with light from the sky! Must've been a flare. My buddy said to me, "What should we do??" "There really isn't anything we can do," I said. About 25 minutes later, we heard a group of three hikers walk past!!! Nuts! They were going up the hill! No idea about the flare. If it was you, I hope you're okay!

                                                                                                                            I digress... I brought 3 litres of water and 2 bottles of gatorade. Brought both gatorades + 4 granola bars with me from Alder Flats to go up the summit.

                                                                                                                            We left the flats at 7am and reached the shelter at 11am. Note that the first 3k climb from Alder Flats is moderately steep and ROCKY. It's like walking up a river bed. I had a low bg on the way up the path, so I had a bar. The rocky path is okay going up, but coming down... I'll talk about that later.

                                                                                                                            After you clear the river bed, it's a nice hike up through the forest to a nifty little peak where the view is AWESOME. Ate a granola bar due to a low bg. This time, we were closer to the height of the surrounding mountains. After a short jaunt downhill, it goes back up to another little peak. Fun! One more of those, then a little walk west and boom! We're looking over Pitt Lake! It's a relatively easy hike up to the shelter from there. Moderately steep but very well marked.

                                                                                                                            Before I left I spoke to my son, who'd done the hike in late April. He said that I should be very careful cause once you're overlooking Pitt Lake, the trail isn't very well marked. "Also, if there's no snow, it might be easy to get lost since there won't be footprints to follow." All this said, you can imagine my surprise on two fronts. First, I was super happy that the trail was indeed marked very well. Every time you pass a marker, with a look up, you can see the next. There was only one or two spots where we had to walk 20 or 30 steps to see the next flag or marker.

                                                                                                                            The second thing that surprised me and saddened me equally, was the fact that all of the stories about a permanent snow field were NOT FOUNDED. Dry. Dry dry dry. No snow and very little water anywhere.

                                                                                                                            That aside, once we got to the emergency shelter there was a group of people that hiked up late the night before. They said that they'd started the hike at about 11pm!!! They made it to the shelter and stopped. "Thank goodness for the shelter!" they said. They seemed unprepared. We'd not seen another person on the hill before that since the flats.

                                                                                                                            At that point, my buddy said that his thighs were starting to cramp up really badly, so he opted out of the summit, but his daughters and myself wanted to continue. We left our small backpack and him at the shelter with the three people. They'd said that another group of two had gone past about an hour before us. We never saw them previously so they must have gone up earlier and camped somewhere on Panorama Ridge.

                                                                                                                            Up we went! From the shelter it was like walking on the moon for the first 30 minutes. No snow, no trees, all rocks. Lots of markers telling us which way to go. Very nice.

                                                                                                                            Once we got to the top of the first ridge, suddenly my iPhone came alive with text messages and emails! Full bars with 3G! Called my wife, sent her some pictures. There were some tress on the ridge, but they're all about 6 - 8 feet tall.

                                                                                                                            For me, the next part of the hike became nerve wracking! It's crazy steep (rock climbing), and mistakes or slips would mean the worst. At least there's no snow. One of the things I really enjoy about hiking up high places, is taking large rocks and tossing them over the edges. I have a video that I took on the hike where I toss a rock off an edge and count to 5 before you hear it hit anything. THEN, the rocks start to fall... and the noise echoes throughout the valley between the peak and the shelter for 20 seconds at least! We had a brief conversation with two hikers coming down. We were like 5 minutes from the summit. The trick to climbing this is to keep your eyes on the hill in front of you and think about each step. Up up up for the last 100 meters or so and boom! We're at the peak!

                                                                                                                            One of the girls I was with didn't sleep very well the night before and had been yawning most of the way up. When we got there, she lay down on a large flat rock and promptly fell asleep! (I got video of her snoring!) Hahah!

                                                                                                                            About 20 minutes later she woke up shivering cause it got a bit windy and cold. Took a few more pictures and down we went.

                                                                                                                            The climb back down from the peak to the shelter went just fine, but boy was I nervous. One step at a time, and take it easy down to the ridge where Fido has service. (I think it's overlooking the valley where the ice caves can be hiked to from below) It's south facing.

                                                                                                                            Turning North back towards the shelter is a rocky downhill walk. It was here when I finished my second bottle of gatorade. When we got there, my buddy was in there shivering! It was cold for him due to the wind and lack of movement. I'd guess 7 degrees C at 1240pm. We'd only left him there about an hour and 45 minutes before. He was okay. There were three groups on their way up that stopped at the shelter... One of which was saying that he had climbed golden ears on that weekend every year for the past 15. He said that until two years ago, he had no idea that there was a small valley between the shelter and the little pond west of the hut. AND this was the first time he'd ever seen absolutely no snow in that valley! It's usually a flat walk across west to where the pond is.

                                                                                                                            Leaving panorama ridge, we past quite a few hikers headed for the top. I hope they made it up and down safely! Go team!

                                                                                                                            The only thing I'll say about hiking down is the freaking river bed from kilometre ~10 to ~7. It's a knee/thigh/foot killer. More water would've been nice too. Though for the weight, I'm not sure that it would've been beneficial. Once back to Alder flats, we stopped to pack up our stuff and have a quick bite to eat. Thank goodness for the break!

                                                                                                                            Packed our backpacks and hiked out. Back to the parking lot by 545. Home by 6.

                                                                                                                            No snow at all, right to the top.
                                                                                                                            AMAZING VIEWS
                                                                                                                            Varying terrain.
                                                                                                                            Nice people on the hill.
                                                                                                                            Photos and videos

                                                                                                                            Varying terrain.
                                                                                                                            Picture opportunities everywhere!
                                                                                                                            Great exercise.

                                                                                                                            Sucky riverbed climb and descent just up from alder flats.
                                                                                                                            No snow!
                                                                                                                            No water past alder flats at the beginning of August.
                                                                                                                            More dangerous than advertised just down from the summit even with no snow. (BE CAREFUL)

                                                                                                                              Posted: August 12, 2015 03:31:03 PM PST

                                                                                                                              Kaitlin from North Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                              In addition to my last comment (should have clarified)
                                                                                                                              We never ended up finding Alder Flats, pitched where we could...still have no idea where it is! I would do some good research to make sure you know (and not wandering aimlessly in the rain at dinner time ;) )

                                                                                                                                Posted: August 7, 2015 10:17:56 AM PST

                                                                                                                                Kaitlin from North Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                Came back from the hike yesterday August 6th and wanted to note anyone looking for Alder Flats - there is an orange diamond about 4.5km in that points to the left and says "Alder Flats" IGNORE this. It was misleading and ended confusing our party about where and how far we had gone.
                                                                                                                                Great hike but WET so everything was slippery and took longer than expected. Need to go back and do it again when we can have a view from Panorama!

                                                                                                                                  Posted: August 7, 2015 10:10:25 AM PST

                                                                                                                                  Sam from Surrey writes:

                                                                                                                                  Just got back from this hike and it was tough but the summit makes it definitely worth it. I am very glad we broke it up into two days though and would recommend this to others as its definitely a challenging 10-12 hour hike roundtrip. We hiked up to the emergency hut on day one and then the summit and down today. Camping at the top was good fun but spots are sparse. We decided to go light and just use sleeping bags and foamies which worked well for us.
                                                                                                                                  Also, do note that there is a water source by the Emergency Hut if you have a filter or drops. There was a sign near Alder Flats noting that it was the last water spot but this is wrong and unnecessarily had us conserving water.

                                                                                                                                    Posted: August 3, 2015 04:00:10 PM PST

                                                                                                                                    Kaley from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                    Just did this hike yesterday and camped up top with my dog. The trail is pretty well marked along the route. There are a quite few junctions but if you follow the signs and markers and pay attention, it should all be good. Overall, a pretty decent trail but it was exhausting with a heavy pack on. A lot of slippery roots and rocks once past Alder Flats. The descent is killer, just destroyed my knees.

                                                                                                                                    My Husky mix did fine on this hike. The main problem is that there is barely any water. Only the first 5.5km has any significant amount of water (and then none til the top). So make sure you bring enough for yourself (and your furry friend!). There is a small ladder climb that he couldn't do but there's a small side trail off to the side. He always surprises me on how easily he scrambles up rocks. He loved it.

                                                                                                                                    A lot of wildlife on the trail! Saw a Pica, a huge deer and a lot of birds. Also fresh black beer scat along the trail closer to the top, must have wandered through during the night.

                                                                                                                                      Posted: June 18, 2015 02:35:43 PM PST

                                                                                                                                      Dom from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                      One of the most rewarding hikes I've done. There was virtually no snow on the trail and just patches of snow along the way. Took us about 8-9 hours to complete as we went past the Shelter to summit.

                                                                                                                                      The bug level was insane on June 6th. It was a relentless attack once you get to the shelter. Don't know if its common.

                                                                                                                                        Posted: June 15, 2015 12:21:14 PM PST

                                                                                                                                        Jenny from Port Moody writes:

                                                                                                                                        Has anyone done this trail with a dog? My guy managed Dilly Dally Loop last weekend so if this is comparable he'd be fine but I'd appreciate any feedback. He's a chow/husky Mutt so pretty big and rugged but not liftable!

                                                                                                                                          Posted: June 5, 2015 08:43:33 AM PST

                                                                                                                                          sunshowers from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                          My husband and I went this weekend and camped at Alder Flats. The trail is very easy for the first section, wide and gravel paved, with some gentle climbs and descents. After the wet weather for the last several weeks, the trail started getting really soggy in the second half to Alder Flats. It also gets steeper and the trail is much less manicured. There were many sections with water running down the trail, and lots of deep, sticky mud. It was still really beautiful, just watch your footing on the slippery rocks and roots. It took us around 2 and a half hours to Alder Flats, including time to stop and take pictures.

                                                                                                                                          The campsite was surprisingly not that much of a campsite. We had read that there would be gravel pads, but most of the areas that were big enough for a tent were soggy dirt. We walked around a bit before picking a spot to pitch our tent, and there seemed to be fewer than 10 spots. There were a lot of people milling around, confused, when we got there because there isn't a sign for Alder Flats, and the continuation of the trail to Panorama Ridge wasn't very well marked. But it was nice, with an outhouse and close to a river with clear water (we still boiled it before drinking). The rocky riverbed was totally dry next to where we pitched our tent, and I wonder if the entire riverbed fills with water in summer.

                                                                                                                                          After pitching our tent and eating lunch, we decided to check out the trail to Panorama Ridge. After about a km, we reached a lookout with an amazing view of the snowcapped mountains on the other side of the canyon. It was gorgeous and we hoped to see the view from higher up. But a little further up, there was so much water running down the trail that it was basically a stream. We kept going for about half an hour before deciding to turn back down, as it wasn't getting any better. When we got back to Alder Flats, we ran into a hiker who had gone all the way to the top, and he said the last 3km of trail was under a foot of snow.

                                                                                                                                          Hiking back down the next morning was easier, since the mud had dried somewhat. It took us about 2 hours at a leisurely pace.

                                                                                                                                            Posted: April 5, 2015 09:57:14 PM PST

                                                                                                                                            Katie from Prince George writes:

                                                                                                                                            Hi, can this trail be completed in April?

                                                                                                                                              Posted: March 31, 2015 11:54:42 PM PST

                                                                                                                                              Tara from Coquitlam writes:

                                                                                                                                              Did this hike yesterday with two friends.

                                                                                                                                              Just a heads up: as you continue along the trail after the first clearing, you'll hike upstream for a long time & there aren't a lot of markers to let you know that you're on the right track. After the riverbed & a little more forest, then you reach the part where it says you see 'a tree log in the trail with a section cut out of it.'

                                                                                                                                              The first 6km or so is pretty easy, and the last 6 km are fairly uphill. Definitely doable in a day though- even in fall when there is less daylight. Lots of places to refill water, so you don't need to carry a lot with you.

                                                                                                                                              We were a little unsure where to head after panorama ridge/reaching the emergency hut, so we kind of just guessed and went up the rocks a bit. Apparently you can continue to the summit, but it isn't well marked.

                                                                                                                                                Posted: September 28, 2014 05:32:31 PM PST

                                                                                                                                                Alex from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                                Did this hike on July 26th, went all the way up to the summit. If you plan to complete this in 1 day, and climb the summit, I'd recommend starting as early as possible, because otherwise you'd be risking descending in the dark. This is probably the most challenging 1 day hike I've done in lower mainland. The views from the summit are absolutely astounding, so I highly recommend giving this one a shot.

                                                                                                                                                  Posted: July 29, 2014 10:13:17 AM PST

                                                                                                                                                  Agadom from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                                  Did the hike on 10th of July, camping on Panorama Ridge, near the hut. We were the only people camping up there that night.
                                                                                                                                                  Great hike, easy to get lost in some sections, not as great marked as other trails. Starts to get technical after Alder Flats. Make sure you bring enough water, especially on hot summer days. You can only get water at the base, Alder Flats and then at Panorama Ridge.
                                                                                                                                                  All in all, a great adventure that everybody should do at least once. Also you can't pay camping fees at the car park, so make sure you pay online before you arrive. It's a challenge hiking with all camping gear, but it's worth it. The views and the sunset are amazing!
                                                                                                                                                  We hiked the summit the next morning.

                                                                                                                                                    Posted: July 23, 2014 10:34:56 PM PST

                                                                                                                                                    Ray from Mission writes:

                                                                                                                                                    I have hiked the alpine hut 4 times and have continued on to the summit twice - once when I was 21 and the second time when I was 40. Never camped, always a same day event. When I was 21, it seemed I skipped up and back. The second time, I was very tired especially kick stepping up the snow filed. I wasn't in nearly as good as shape. I felt like collapsing when I finally got back to the parking lot. Was a 7am to dark hike for sure. It gave me a real sense of accomplishment both times. I found going down harder both times as you tend to want to really push it and it can be hard on the knees. I am trying it again next month with my 22 year old daughter. I am now 53. I may camp out at Alder Flats. Not sure if I am up to a another 1 day slog.

                                                                                                                                                      Posted: July 6, 2014 07:39:36 PM PST

                                                                                                                                                      Raj from Coquitlam writes:

                                                                                                                                                      How long is the hike to Alder flats from the parking lot?

                                                                                                                                                      Will this plan work in Aug? Start at 6pm from parking lot -> Hike to Alder Flats -> Camp overnight -> leave tents there -> complete hike early next morning to return down to car by late afternoon.

                                                                                                                                                        Posted: June 20, 2014 12:17:48 PM PST

                                                                                                                                                        Wendell Seldura from Vancouver writes:

                                                                                                                                                        The sense of accomplishment of doing this whole hike was astounding!

                                                                                                                                                        I did this hike late summer of 2013 and I have done many hikes this summer (Mt. Baker, Garibaldi Lake, Wedgemount Lake, Lindeman Lake, Chekamus Lake, Eagle Bluffs, Three Brothers at Manning Park,Mt. Seymour, Buntzen Lake) but this hike takes it to another level.

                                                                                                                                                        This was the most difficult I have ever done. I thought Wedgemount was difficult but Golden Ears was a lot more strenuous and dangerous!

                                                                                                                                                        We camped at Alder Flats and started the second day so the whole hike we did the second day was just 19 km instead of the total of 24 and it took us 13 hours from Alder Flats to the Peak back to Alder Flats and to the parking lot. Included was the time we spent packing our tent though at Alder Flats.

                                                                                                                                                        The hike towards the peak was very difficult and included nearly vertical ascent and the rocks and roots were very slippery as it probably rained the few days before and there was continuous mist. We were enveloped with clouds all throughout our ascent so we were not able to see the marvelous views of Pitt Lake and other nearby mountains.

                                                                                                                                                        When we reached the summit, we were above the clouds and we could see the peaks of the other mountains at 360 degrees above the clouds. Man, it was ABSOLUTELY DIVINE!

                                                                                                                                                        The hike down was as hard as getting up and we slipped and tripped many times.
                                                                                                                                                        The very rocky riverbed on the lower trail from Alder Flats to the parking lot was hell as our feet were very tired.

                                                                                                                                                        We were caught by darkness for over two hours and we were just dragging our bodies through the dark as we were so tired.

                                                                                                                                                        I would definitely do this hike again in a heartbeat, maybe when the day is longer in the middle of the summer next year!

                                                                                                                                                          Posted: September 9, 2013 09:57:21 PM PST

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