14 Incredible Overnight Hikes around Vancouver

Garibaldi Lake

Table of Contents

Overnight Hikes around Vancouver

Everyone loves a good day hike. But there’s something special about setting off by foot – carrying the gear needed to make it through several nights in the wild.



Backpacking creates the opportunity to discover remote and beautiful locations. It allows you to escape the crowded areas. And it gives you the time to fully disconnect. To leave behind the stress and worries of the concrete jungle.

Vancouver is unique in that one can escape the city and be in a remote area within an hour or two. There are so many incredible trails to explore, and places to camp, so close by.

This list features 14 such trails. Trails that can easily be reached within a half day of Vancouver, and many of them within an hour’s drive. This isn’t an exhaustive list of backpacking destinations near Vancouver, but it provides a good sampling.

I hope this inspires you to grab a backpack, stuff it full of the essentials, and set off to explore.

Of course, just make sure you have all the requisite safety gear and do the proper planning before setting off on your journey. Backcountry camping permits are needed at some of these sites.


Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast

1. Della Falls

DSC00653

Where: Strathcona Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 – 3 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: Della Falls is certainly off the beaten path. From the trailhead near Port Alberni, hikers will need a boat or water taxi to cross the Great Central Lake. Once across the lake there is a small campground, and there is another small campground at the base of the falls.

The effort is worth it, as hikers are rewarded with a front-row seat of the (arguably) tallest waterfall in Canada. Della Falls weighs in with a 440 meter vertical drop.

You can add an extra day to this hike if you wish to hike to nearby Love Lake.

Link: Read more here.


2. Juan de Fuca Marine Trail

Sandcut Creek Falls

Where: Juan de Fuca Provincial Park

Time needed: 3 – 5 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: The Juan de Fuca Marine trail stretches through some remote and spectacular terrain on the southwest coast of Vancouver Island. Wildlife and big surf make this an epic hike. Yet it is less busy than its cousin to the north (The West Coast Trail). The 47 km trail passes through several scenic beach camping spots (Sombrio, French, Mystic, Botanical and Bear beaches).

Link: Read more here.


3. West Coast Trail

Tsusiat falls

Where: Pacific Rim National Park

Time needed: 5 – 7 days

Dogs Allowed?: No

Details: Probably the most iconic hike in B.C., the 75 km West Coast Trail draws hikers from all over the world. The views come at a price, however. Ladders, bogs, and tidal crossings all conspire to slow hikers down in this rugged territory. Permits are also required to gain access to the trail.

Link: Read more here.


4. North Coast Trail

North Coast Trail Day 6

Where: Cape Scott Provincial Park

Time needed: 5 – 7 days

Dogs Allowed?: No

Details: The 58 km North Coast Trail on northern tip of Vancouver Island takes hikers through dense forest and over serene beaches. Wildlife in the ocean and on the land is aplenty. The trail draws many comparisons to the West Coast Trail, with some preferring its more remote – and lesser travelled – location.

Link: Read more here.


5. Sunshine Coast Trail

A photo posted by Jeff Pelletier (@jpelletier) on

Where: Sunshine Coast

Time needed: 7+ days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: As Canada’s longest hut-to-hut hiking trail, the 180 km Sunshine Coast Trail is a beast to tackle in its entirety. It is quickly becoming a popular trail as it can be broken down and hiked in smaller sections. The free-to-use huts and walk-on access make it an attractive alternative to the West Coast Trial.

Link: Read more here.


Sea to Sky

6. Garibaldi Lake

Panorama from Panorama Ridge

Where: Garibaldi Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 – 3 days

Dogs Allowed?: No

Details: The proximity to Vancouver and gobsmacking beauty of Garibaldi Provincial Park make this a bucket-lister for any Vancouver resident. Camping at Garibaldi Lake opens up awesome day hikes to The Black Tusk and Panorama Ridge. The trail can be completed as an out-and-back from the Rubble Creek Parking lot, or as a through-hike between Cheakamus Lake and Rubble Creek.

Link: Read more here.


7. Elfin Lakes

Elfin Lakes

Where: Garibaldi Lake Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: No

Details: While commonly done as a day hike, the campsite at Elfin Lakes is so beautiful it’s worth spending the night. Camping at Elfin Lakes opens up the ability to nearby hikes such as Mamquam Lake, Opal Cone, and the Gargoyles. The heated Elfin Lakes Shelter makes this one a beauty in the winter, too.

Link: Read more here.


8. Joffre Lakes

joffre

Where: Joffre Lakes Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: Joffre Lakes can easily be completed as a day hike, but the tenting sites at the beautifully turquoise upper lake will make you want stay overnight. More difficult objectives such at Mount Tszil are nearby as well.

Link: Read more here.





9. Russet Lake

Russet Lake

Where: Garibaldi Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: No

Details: The beautiful vistas seen along the way to Russet Lake near Whistler make this a trek worth doing. There are three main ways to reach Russet Lake – via Singing Pass Trail, The High Note Trail, or the Musical Bumps Trail.

Link: Read more here.


Metro Vancouver

10. Golden Ears

A photo posted by Rachel A (@rachelstepang) on

Where: Golden Ears Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: With over 1,500 meters of elevation over the 12 km trek up to Panorama Ridge, the Golden Ears Trail is one that burns the legs. But pitching your tent and camping at the top provides an amazing view that will quickly make you forget just how tired you are.

Link: Read more here.


11. Elsay Lake

Elsay.

Where: Mount Seymour Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: Off the beaten path from the popular Mount Seymour Trail day-hike, Elsay Lake is a nice camping spot in North Vancouver. Elsay Lake sits nestled in at the base of Mount Elsay and Mount Bishop and sees much less traffic than most other North Shore Trails. Beware of the flies here, however.

Link: Read more here.


12. Howe Sound Crest Trail

Howe Sound Crest Trail

Where: Cypress Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: Unbeatable views of Howe Sound and the coastal mountains treat those who journey out into the rugged 30 km HSCT. The trek takes you from Cypress ski resort, up, over and around several mountains, each of which are worthy of day hikes in their own respect (ie, St. Mark’s Summit, The Lions, Brunswick Mountain, Deeks Lake, and so on). The HSCT is another must-do trek for any Vancouverite.

Link: Read more here.


Fraser Valley and Beyond

13. Lindeman Lake

Lindeman Lake 2

Where: Chilliwack Lake Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: If you’re looking for a trail on the easier side, Lindeman Lake is a great destination. At 4 km, the trail is much shorter than the other hikes on this list. The lake is beautifully clear and surrounded by several massive peaks. It’s the perfect spot to set up camp and relax.

Beyond Lindeman Lake, nearby Greendrop Lake is another fantastic camping spot.

Link: Read more here.


14. Skyline II Trail

Hozameen Mountain from the Skyline II trail

Where: E.C. Manning Provincial Park

Time needed: 2 days

Dogs Allowed?: Yes

Details: Skyline II Trail is a magnificent hiking trail within Manning Park. It is one of the park’s most popular trails and takes hikers 25 km from the Strawberry Flats to the Skagit Valley. The trail takes you along Snow Camp and Lone Goat Mountains, and provides spectacular views Mount Hozameen and Thunder Lake. Beautiful wildflowers also fill the area.

Link: Read more here.


Map of the hikes

 

Hopefully this gives you a taste of some of the overnight hikes available close to Vancouver. Now you just need to pick one and put it on your summer calendar!

Happy exploring!

Oh, and if we missed your favorite local overnight hike, please let us know in the comments below!


Related posts:

2 Comments

  1. Mandy Jakic Aug 20th, 2016
    • Karl Aug 21st, 2016

Leave a Reply

750 Shares
Share653
Pin97
Tweet
Pocket
Email