Dog Mountain is a great snowshoe trail in Mount Seymour Provincial Park. The trek is fairly easy, and as such is a great place to head for a comfortable trek during the winter months. The trail has some ups and downs along with the odd awkward section, but overall this is a flat and beginner-friendly snowshoe trail. There are plenty of markers and the trail is well used so your chances of straying off-course are minimal. If you’ve never been on snowshoes before, a trip out to Dog Mountain is the perfect place to see what the hype is all about. Maintained by BC Parks, the Dog Mountain trail is free to use and dogs are allowed. All these factors make a Dog Mountain snowshoe the perfect family outing. Not to mention the spectacular view of Vancouver from the summit.
Dog Mountain Snowshoe Summary
Distance: 4.5 km
Elevation Gain: 54 m
Highest Point: 1,054 m
Time Needed: 2 Hours
Dogs Allowed: Yes, on leash
Est. Driving Time from Vancouver: 30 min
Trailhead Coordinates: N49.367516 W-122.949211
Starting the hike at Mount Seymour parking lot
To get to the trailhead, drive up to the Mount Seymour parking lots (the road to Mt Seymour is a Class A Highway and requires drivers to use winter tires or carry chains between October 1st – April 30th). At the end of the parking lot you will see the BC Parks information board. Check out the map and get your bearings for the hike. From the parking lot you head north, just left of the chair-lift/ ski run.
Almost immediately you will see a sign for First Lake with trails to your left (going straight will take you up the the 3 peaks of Mount Seymour – a much more difficult hike). Follow the sign for First Lake and head left into the trees. You will drop down a bit and begin winding your way through the trail.
Pro-tip: The trail is heavily used, and unless there has been fresh snowfall and you are breaking trail, you can usually fair quite well (or even better) hiking out to Dog Mountain in MICROspikes (or Yaktrax or Hillsound trail crampons). Before heading up, you can also look at the Mount Seymour Provincial Park website to see if there are any updates on the trail conditions.
After about 1 km, or 30 minutes of hiking, you will reach First Lake (which will of course be a field of snow). This is about the halfway mark, and if you want a break this is a great place to do it.
Cool fact: “Although the first recorded climb of Mount Seymour was made in 1908 by a party from the BC Mountaineering Club, Mount Seymour was virtually unknown to most of the residents of Vancouver and vicinity until the late 1920s.” 1
Carrying on west of the lake you’ll see a sign for Dog Mountain along the same trail you took to get to the lake. Simply follow the markers, and after some slight uphill, you’ll be at the spectacular viewpoint (assuming you’re lucky enough to have a clear day) which extends from Mt. Baker in the east to Stanley Park and beyond in the west. You’ll also have a great view of Grouse Mountain and several nearby mountains.
Now you can rest, soak up the view, take some pictures and hang out with the resident ravens – all before retracing your steps back to the parking lot.
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Driving Directions and Parking
Drive east on Highway #1 over the Iron Workers Memorial Bridge. Take exit #22 for Mt. Seymour Parkway and follow it for about 10 minutes until you see the signs for Mount Seymour Provincial Park. Here, you turn left at Mt. Seymour Road and follow the road all the way up the to Seymour parking lot. The trailhead is at the northern-most point of the lot.
The road to Mt Seymour is a Class A Highway and requires drivers to use winter tires or carry chains between October 1st – April 30th.
Winter parking designations are in effect from November to April. On peak days during the winter months, parking capacity can be exceeded at the upper parking lots of Mount Seymour Park. These parking lots service the customers of Mount Seymour Resorts Ltd., who pay a fee to ski, snowboard, snowshoe and snowtube. Visitors accessing the backcountry, areas outside of the Mt. Seymour Resorts Ltd. ski area are required to park in parking lot 1 and lower parking lot 5. Overnight parking is permitted in parking lot 1.1
Editor's and Reader's Hike Rating
Variety of the terrain - 75%
Views and scenery - 85%
Not too crowded - 50%
Overall 'fun factor' - 75%
Dog Mountain is the perfect place for an easy afternoon snowshoe. The short distance and lack of serious elevation change makes it a popular trail for beginner showshoers and for children.
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Other Hikes and Related Posts
- Winter Trail Guide: The Snowshoe Grouse Grind (moderate)
- Gear Review: Kahtoola MICROspikes Traction System
- Hiking Mount Seymour Trail in North Vancouver (moderate)
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