109 Walks Review
109 Walks In British Columbia’s Lower Mainland is a guidebook that has been around for over three decades, and is a staple on the bookshelves of many casual hikers and walkers around Vancouver. The book went through a revision in early 2014, and I got my hands on a review copy of this current 7th edition.
The book was originally written in 1976 by Mary and David Macaree, who were long-time members of the British Columbia Mountaineering Club (BCMC). Mary and David were also the original authors of 103 Hikes in Southwest British Columbia. They are now deceased, but this book continues to be revised and updated by Alice Purdey and John Halliday, who are both also BCMC members. All proceeds from the sale of the book go to BCMC for conservation purposes, which is great to see, and just one more reason to grab a copy.
109 Walks in BC’s Lower Mainland currently boasts over 90,000 copies sold and counting, so it is tried, tested, and true.
The walks covered in the book range from short, 2km walks, up to treks of 15km at the maximum. Or, measured in time, the walks in this book range from 30 minutes to 5 hours.
You might wonder what qualifies a trail as a ‘walk’ in this book, as opposed to ‘hike’. The authors state the trails generally take 4 hour or less to complete, have less than 400m of elevation gain, and are on well-established routes. The hikes are grouped by location (north to south, east to west), and all contain the necessary details on distance, time needed, possible alternative routes, difficulty rating, trail surface (ie, rough trail, packed trail, paved road), and, if relevant, the elevation gain and season the trail is open to walk. There are also maps for each trail and a photo (black and white). With summary, each walk is two-pages in length on average, giving the book a total length of 240 pages, including the introduction and tables at the back.
This is one of those books, which, once on your bookshelf, will quickly collect dog-eared pages and provide the answer to many Saturday morning questions of “What should we do today“? From Squamish to Chilliwack, and every city in between, there are bound to be a dozen walks close to your house in this book, and you’ll probably discover a couple of new gems (like Maplewood Flats or Rice Lake).
What’s New in the 7th Edition
As mentioned, the book was recently updated in 2014 – 5 years after its previous revision. Here’s what has been added and updated:
- 14 new walks and 12 updated walks
- fully updated maps and trail information throughout
- transit options and gps coords for every trailhead
- tips on points of historical, cultural or natural interest
If you want to discover some new walking trails near your house, or even some great day-trip destinations, this is a great book to own.
You can pick up the book on Amazon here.