Hiking

Hut-to-hut hiking in Wells Gray Provincial Park

There’s a real roof over my head, a cushy mattress to sleep on, hearty food, and I carry only a light-weight pack. Our 7-day hut-to-hut hike in British Columbia’s Wells Gray Provincial Park can’t be described as luxurious, but it’s a welcome upgrade from our usual backpacking trips. Under the guidance of Wells Gray Adventures, our group hiked through pristine alpine wilderness shaped by volcanoes and glaciers. At day’s end, we retreated to the rustic comfort of remote mountain huts.

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Categories: British Columbia, Hiking | Tags: , , | 46 Comments

The Rockwall Trail: Kootenay National Park, British Columbia

The Rockwall Trail is one of the premier backpacking trails in the Canadian Rockies. Located in British Columbia’s Kootenay National Park, adjacent to Banff National Park, the trail is named for the sheer limestone wall that is the hiker’s companion along much of the 55 km (34 mi) route. Three mountain passes with an elevation gain of 2600 m (8530 ft) and loss of 2250 m (7382 ft) test cardio and knee joints. But the dramatic scenery and gorgeous wildflowers are totally worth the effort. Our group had an outstanding time on this trail July 20-24.

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Categories: British Columbia, Hiking | Tags: , , , | 57 Comments

Toboggan Falls-Hargreaves Lake loop: Berg Lake day hike

In my previous post, I wrote about our Berg Lake backpacking trip in British Columbia’s Mount Robson Provincial Park. This post features the Toboggan Falls-Hargreaves Lake loop, a day hike from Berg Lake that packs a huge punch over just 6.3 km (4 mi) and a manageable 348 m (1142 ft) elevation gain. From waterfalls that look like enormous waterslides to glacial lakes, lush forest and top-drawer mountain panoramas, this loop has astonishing variety and beauty. It’s hikeable in two hours but we spent over four hours exploring and photo-taking. I had a smile on my face the whole time.

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Categories: British Columbia, Hiking | Tags: , , , | 65 Comments

Berg Lake Trail: Mount Robson Provincial Park, British Columbia

The Berg Lake Trail, in B.C.’s Mount Robson Provincial Park, showcases some of the best scenery in the Canadian Rockies. The 23 km / 14.3 mi backcountry route is a magnificent journey through deep valleys, along raging rivers, and past thundering waterfalls and glacier-studded peaks. Berg Lake, the star attraction, is a turquoise, glacier-fed lake that sits beneath towering Mount Robson. We just returned from our Berg Lake backpacking trip. There’s a lot of hype about this trail, but it exceeded our lofty expectations. What a way to celebrate the re-opening of travel in British Columbia!

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Categories: British Columbia, Hiking | Tags: , , , | 59 Comments

Why did I never turn right? Hiking in Horseshoe Bay, British Columbia

For year now, when I need an easy, no-fuss hike, I just walk out my door to a trailhead about 10-minutes away. The path immediately gets me into the deep forest above Horseshoe Bay. After 500 m of uphill grunting, there’s an intersection. I’ve always turned left. It’s like I’m on autopilot. Left is to Whyte Lake, a pretty, little lake that makes the perfect one hour, door-to-door outing—a reliable and predictable bit of fresh air and exercise. A few months ago, I bucked the routine and turned right.

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Categories: British Columbia, Canada, Hiking | Tags: , , | 67 Comments

Winter hike to Garibaldi Lake, British Columbia

Garibaldi Lake, located in Garibaldi Provincial Park near Whistler, British Columbia, is a popular summertime hiking destination. A few weeks ago, on a crisp sunny day, I finally got to hike there in winter. Verdict: It’s a gorgeous cold weather outing. The blanket of white adds a simplicity to the landscape making it appear even grander than in summer. And, there’s a peacefulness that comes with the largely monochromatic scene. Strangely, I can thank the pandemic for allowing me to hike to Garibaldi Lake this winter.

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Categories: British Columbia, Canada, Hiking | Tags: , , , | 50 Comments

Deciduous conifers of Frosty Mountain: Manning Park, British Columbia

No, it’s not an oxymoron. While hiking the Frosty Mountain trail in E.C. Manning Provincial Park, I was introduced to the alpine larch, a deciduous conifer that sheds its needles every fall and grows them back in spring. For a few weeks, in late September/early October, the Frosty Mountain larches become a blaze of golden colour. My hiking buddy Eva and I timed our October 2 hike perfectly for this stunning fall display and learned some cool things about British Columbia’s toughest and oldest tree.

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Categories: British Columbia, Hiking | Tags: , , , , | 53 Comments

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