Today we did the Grouse Mountain Trail and we were really shocked, how many people are "running" up the steep steps and missed the nature experience.
For the next couple of weeks we are looking for some nice calm hikes to enjoy the nature and wilderness of Canada. Up to 1 or 2 hour drive from Vancouver.
What are your favorite hikes here?
I agree with Shaun. The Grouse Grind is an intense climb, not a leisurely hike. I would also recommend the Squamish Chief or Lynn Valley for scenic, gorgeous treks. They would be a 3 or 4 out of 10 in terms of difficulty. Enjoy!
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Hi Oliver, the Grind is not scenic. It is a staircase up a mountain so people use it for exercise. I used to do it once a week and was always shocked to see tourists in jeans thinking it is a leisurely stroll!
Instead head up the Sea to Sky highway (which is a spectacular drive) to the Squamish Chief. You can hike to the top of the Chief for amazing views or to the top of nearby Shannon Falls - which is a less crowded and more scenic hike with similar view from top.
There is also a brand new Gondola at the Chief that I have yet to try. There is a longer hike to the top and you can take the lift down.
There are many more in the Squamish area but the Chief is the most tourist friendly to find.
Besides that there are tons of hikes on the North Shore of Vancouver. Lynn Canyon Park is nice and there is a free suspension bridge like the one at Capilano. Dog Mountain is a good one too.
See here for a full list --> http://www.vancouvertrails.com/regions/the-north-shore/
Have fun and stay dry!
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Not sure when this was asked, because the Grouse Grind that I assume you are referring to is closed in the winter, but Stawamus Chief Provincial Park has a lot of great trails open May to October. I'm not a particularly good hiker but I thoroughly enjoy The Chief and have been up several times. There's a lot of people there too, but I think there's plenty to enjoy at a calm pace.
Btw, the people running up Grouse do it almost everyday and are working on beating their best times. It's quite the competition in Vancouver.
Yeah, the Grouse Grind is more of a 'experience' than enjoyable hike. I love hiking in Squamish (North of Vancouver), the Chief (either 1 or all three peaks) is a great day hike and offers some amazing views of How sound, although it's also a pretty good uphill trek (what can I say, we have a lot of mountains). Lighthouse Park
http://www.vancouvertrails.com is another great resource with tons of trail info, including how to get to trail heads with public transit.
Arnette Round The World Girl