7 great snowshoeing trails near Vancouver

Dec 13 2016, 8:29 am

With Vancouver receiving its first big snowfall in recent memory, now is the time where amazing hiking trails become equally amazing snowshoeing trails!

Good snowfalls like this don’t come too often these days, so it’s important to take advantage when they do. That’s why we’ve come up with seven great snowshoe trails for you to venture through this winter.

Grouse Mountain

There are a number of snowshoeing trails located up on Grouse Mountain, each with varying difficulties. They are all located within the Munday Alpine Snowshoe Park, and the four main trails are anywhere from 1-1.6 km long.

For those wanting more of a challenge, there’s the Snowshoe Grind, a winter variation of the Grouse Grind. It features 240 meters of elevation throughout the 4.3 km trail.

Cost: $44.95 (lift ticket); $15 (snowshoe rental)

Difficulty: Easy

Mount Seymour

Mt. Seymour has a number of small but connected snowshoe trails available on the mountain. Individually, none of them exceed a kilometre, but they can be combined for a longer snowshoe expedition if wanted. All the trails combined are just over 5 km long.

Cost: $9.50 (snowshoe ticket); $27 (ticket + rental)

Difficulty: Easy

Dog Mountain

Dog Mountain is a moderately difficult snowshoe trail that starts by the Mt. Seymour Resort parking lot. The roundtrip of 4.4 km takes takes between one and two hours to complete, and features a breathtaking view of the summit halfway through.

It’s one of the more popular unregulated snowshoe trails in the area, and as its name suggests, dogs are allowed on the trip too!

Cost: Free

Difficulty: Medium

Whistler – Train Wreck

Whistler / Shutterstock

Whistler / Shutterstock

While there are a number of snowshoe trails on the mountains for your enjoyment, the Train Wreck trail is arguably the best of them all – and it’s free!

Located roughly 8 km south of Whistler Village in Function Junction. It isn’t the easiest of trailheads to find, though detailed directions are laid out here.

Train Wreck gets its name from the seven train cars scattered along the trail due to a train derailing many years back. The derailed train cars have since been transformed into extraordinary works of art, making for some good scenery along the way.

The trail is about a 4 km venture, which extends to 6 km if you want to visit all seven of the train cars.

Cost: Free

Difficulty: Easy-Medium

Cypress Mountain

There’s over 11 km worth of various self-guided snowshow trails up on Cypress Mountain. The high number of connecting trails is great for those who aren’t sure how long of a trek they’re wishing for, as you’re never too far away from a main trail if you decide to pack it in early.

Cost: $10 (ticket); $26 (ticket + rental)

Difficulty: Easy-Medium

Hollyburn Mountain


An alternative snowshoe trail in the area is Hollyburn Mountain, located in Cypress Provincial Park. This trail is a lot longer than any of the one’s prior – roughly 7 km to the Hollyburn peak and back down. The long trek isn’t too challenging though, and the views from the mountain make it well worth the trip.

Cost: Free (snowshoe rental available at trailhead)

Difficulty: Medium

Elfin Lakes (Squamish)

Elfin Lakes / Shutterstock

Elfin Lakes / Shutterstock

This trail is far more advanced than any other on this list and is not meant for inexperienced snowshoers. The Elfin Lakes trail is a 22 km roundtrip, accessible on the southern end of Garibaldi Park in Squamish.

The trail takes so long to complete there is actually an Elfin Lakes Hut that hikers can stay in overnight if needed, 11 km into the hike.

It’s a consistently challenging, uphill trail best suited for experienced hikers looking for a challenge. For your efforts, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the beautiful hills, valleys, forests, and lakes Squamish has to offer.

Cost: Free ($15 to stay overnight in Elfin Lakes Hut)

Difficulty: Hard

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