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Vancouver Hiking

Just east of downtown Vancouver lays a wonderful area to explore.Location : Port Moody's North Shore .

Belcarra Park

Jug Island Beach Trail . Distance 2 km. Elevation Gain 100m . Time 2hrs. This is a pleasent little walk on a fall day . The trail starts to the right side of the covered cooking area near the parking lot. The first 15 min. is a slow jog up hill and within another 10 min . you arrive at a lookout near a power house . From the power house the trail changes to a 12% grade for 45m. before heading back down hill to the beach . Staircases will take you up & down some of the steeper sections so it should be easy for the kids if you bring them . Also in the area , starting on the south side of the parking lot is the Admiralty Point Trail . This follows the rocky coastline of Burrard Inlet to Burns point .Again here you will need 2-2 1/2 hrs return .
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Diez Vistas

Diez Vistas Trail - Distance : 13 km. Elevation gain : 440 m. High point : 560 m. Time : 5-6 hrs. To find this trail drive to Buntzen Lake just north of Port Moody . The trail starts at the south end of the last parking lot . I found the trail markings could have been better as there is a number of trails in this area . Pay close attention to the signs and you should be okay . Follow the trail across a wooden bridge at the south end of the lake and go up a small rise . After 1/2 hr. there is a power line cut . Go left on this and you will
pick up the trail again . You will see an old water pipe running along the cut and the trail
is marked by pink tape . The steepest part of the trail is at this end . After going back and forth on what appears to be endless switchbacks , you'll come to the first little look out , time to this point is about 1 1/4 hrs. This is not one of the official viewpoints but the sights are wonderful . Diez Vistas means ten views but I found only four were worth the time . Once you leave the little viewpoint it is 15 min. to the top of the ridge . From here the rest of the viewpoints are within reach . On a sunny day Burnaby , Deep Cove ,
Bedwell Bay , Belcarra , and Vancouver are down below you . If the haze is not too bad you can see Vancouver Island in the background . Viewpoint # 8 has a great view up Indian Arm . If you have the time continue across the ridge to viewpoint # 10 and then the trail starts to come down towards the north end of Buntzen Lake . The trail will bring you out to the Lake Shore Trail , follow this back to the parking lot . I found the best part of this hike were the viewpoints . The trip across the ridge is nice but it makes for a long walk on a hot day . I suggest you start early , bring your bar-b-que , and have a picnic on the beach after you finish your hike . The perfect end to a perfect day . Rating 2 View 3





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Buntzen Lake Trail

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Buntzen Lake Trail

Distance; 8km.

Time; 2 -3 hours

Elevation Gain; 100m

 

 

Buntzen Lake Trail is a favorite of mine for a short hike on a rainy day or for getting those hiking muscles into shape for the longer more strenuous hikes in the area.

This is a nicely groomed trial that encircles the lake and provides many view points along the way. As an added bonus is the wild strawberries, goose berries, and huckel berries you can find along the way to snack on.

I like to start this hike at the south end of the first parking lot. Follow the signs to the floating bridge and go across the southwest arm of Buntzen Lake.  Here is where the trail branches off. Straight up for Diez Vistas and the Horseshoe trail and turn right for the Lakeshore Trail. After 15 minutes the trail brings you to the first pump house and changes from a road to the trail proper. Take the right fork for the lake trail which takes you into a pine needle covered path in the cool forest. Along the way you have several peek a boo views of the lake while the trail twists and turns through the forest. One hour into the hike should bring you to a rocky view point under the power lines. This is a good place to stop for a water break and admirer the view of the lake, with Eagle Ridge across from you. From here you can also see your next destination, North Beach. The trail winds its way down the hillside and brings you out at the suspension bridge, kids of all ages just love to bounce on this and for those of us that are a bit tired at this point it adds spring to your step. Once across the bridge turn right to go to the beach. Here is a nice grassy area, picnic tables, sand, and a small dock if you feel so inclined to take a dip. Once you have finished your lunch, if you want to explore a bit, take the road north and check out the old cabins that are used for movie sets. You never know if they are filming you may be discovered and become a star! The road continues down to the last outlet for the lake and has a huge water pipe that goes down the hill to the power generating station on Indian Arm.

Back up at North Beach continue your stroll to the west and visit where the outlet from Coquitlam Lake enters Buntzen. When you consider the engineering that went into this tunnel, its an impressive feat. From here you go up a steep incline in the trail exit on the roadway for a few feet and then back down for the west side of the Lake trail. If you are pressed for time the B.C. Hydro Service Road will take you back to South Beach, but it can be hot and dusty so my advice is to stay in the forest. This side of the trail is much easier and follows the shoreline closely. There are numerous stops along the way where you can soak your toes in the water or just stop and watch the canoes as they make their way up the lake. In no time at all you will find yourself coming out at the dog beach. This is an interesting place to see dogs at their finest. Youll see all different breeds, big dogs, small dogs, purebreds, and mutts playing and getting along like little kids. From here you can head up through the gates to the parking lots and back to your car.  

 

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Floating bridge over southwest arm of the lake
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North Beach
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Water outlet to Indian Arm
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Vancouver Hiking