We have been out enjoying the wilderness this summer, exploring the forests and mountains surrounding the city of Vancouver. Hiking in the summertime is one of the favourite pastimes of Vancouverites, and there are many choices for exciting and challenging hikes that lead to some incredible viewpoints. Cypress Provincial Park has several different trails to choose from, and the hike up to Eagle Bluffs has to be one of the best we’ve attempted; the views of the city and English Bay are hard to find anywhere else.
Cypress Provincial Park – which hosted several events during the 2010 Winter Olympics – is best known for the ski resort that operates during the winter months. When the snow melts and the summer weather arrives, this wilderness area opens up several possibilities for the adventurous traveler who wants to experience the great outdoors. Last week we took the trail to one of the most beautiful destinations in the city – the rocky viewpoint at Eagle Bluffs – located at the western end of the Baden Powell Trail.
From here, you have an amazing bird’s eye view of the Georgia Straight, Bowen Island, English Bay and the city of Vancouver. This hike takes about 4 hours round trip, and isn’t too difficult for most experienced hikers. The first 45 minutes is a bit of a grueling uphill battle against nature, but once you reach the ridge, the hike becomes much easier. From here, it is about another hour until the viewpoint, which is one of the best rewards for a long walk in the woods.
Don’t forget to bring your bathing suit. After you begin the return journey from Eagle Bluffs, you can hike to the top of Black Mountain before making your way back down to Cabin Lake. Even if you don’t jump into the water, the views of this mountain lake are incredible, and is a worthwhile hike on its own to visit here. You can bring an inflatable device to float on the lake, or just jump in; it is the perfect place to cool of and is a very refreshing reward after a 3 hour hike, before you make the return journey to the Cypress parking lot.
The coast mountains located to the north of Vancouver form the natural boundary of the city, and is a preferred playground of locals. Vancouver is one of Canada’s largest cities, and the abundance of exhilarating outdoor adventures surrounding the city is hard to find in a major city anywhere else in the world.
There are many great places to experience nature around Vancouver, and Cypress Provincial Park is one of the best options to visit during your trip. Make sure to include a hike or two during your next visit to Vancouver; you will not be disappointed.