Vancouver Trail Running is a book that came out in 2011 and is a wealth of information for local trail runners. If you’ve previously been relying on hiking guidebooks to seek out new gnarly trails to run on, this book will be a big improvement for you.
This is the first guidebook to document the fantastic trail running found around Vancouver, British Columbia. The runs range from beginner jogs on flat, manicured paths to full-on mountain epics that take runners into lush and wild terrain.
Authored by Rich Wheater, Vancouver Trail Running is comprehensive and covers a diverse set of trails from a variety of areas around Vancouver. The book starts out with a basic overview of safety, wildlife, gear, etiquette, and even nutrition and running technique.
Each trail has a difficulty rating (ranging from novice to expert), elevation profile, run overview, best months to run the trail, and directions to the trailhead. The maps are great, well marked, and very easy to understand. The book is also filled with lots of beautiful photography by the author.
There is a good mix of trails for each difficulty rating. The cities covered are Vancouver, North Vancouver, Port Moody and Burnaby. Most of the trails are, understandably, on the North Shore. One thing I really enjoy about this book is the courses for several popular trail races are included, such as the Dirty Duo, Hallows Eve and Iron Lung.
With over 40 trail runs outlined, you won’t have a hard time finding a new trail to explore. You can view some sample pages over on the publisher’s website.
The only flaw I’ve noticed in the book is a few trails (like Velodrome) are missing from Burnaby Mountain, but that is really nitpicking. The quality of this book is fantastic and unless you’re already an uber-experienced trail runner with all this knowledge already locked into your brain, its worth picking up.
The Vancouver Library has a few copies you can borrow, which is how I first scoped out the book before realizing it was something I would reference often and grabbed a copy off Amazon.
You can also check Vancouver Trail Running out on Facebook.