7 Things to Do at Golden Ears Provincial Park

Hiking trail in Golden Ears Provincial Park

Golden Ears Provincial Park is short drive from Vancouver in nearby Maple Ridge. The park is home to beautiful mossy forests, sandy beaches on Alouette Lake, and lots of hiking trails. To help you plan your trip, here are the best things to do at Golden Ears Provincial Park.

How to Get to Golden Ears Provincial Park

From Lougheed Highway (Highway 7) in Maple Ridge, go north on Golden Ears Way. Stay on it as it turns into 128 Avenue and then Abernathy Way. Turn left on 232 Street. At the roundabout, go right onto 132 Avenue. Follow it as it turns into Fern Crescent and then Golden Ears Parkway as it enters Golden Ears Provincial Park.

There are several parking areas along the Golden Ears Parkway. Unless you are camping or doing a specific hike, the best place to park is at the main South Beach Day-Use Area on Alouette Lake.

 

Tips for Visiting

  • Starting June 23 you will need a day pass to visit the park. See the BC Parks website for details.
  • Use the park map to find your way around.
  • Dogs are not allowed on most beaches in the park and must be on leash in most other areas. Read park regulations before you bring your dog.
  • Smoking, vaping, cannabis, drones, and collecting plants are not allowed. Alcohol and campfires are only permitted in campsites.
  • There are toilets throughout the park. See the park map for details.
  • Most of the park has no cell phone service.
  • Be safe in the park. AdventureSmart recommends bringing a backpack with essential safety and first aid gear on every hike. Check the forecast and pack extra clothing for the weather. Leave a trip plan so someone knows where you are going and when you will be back.

 

Have a Picnic

With dozens of tables, wide expanses of grass, and sandy beaches, Golden Ears Provincial Park has lots of great spots for a picnic. The best spots are at the South Beach Day-Use Area which has lots of parking. But if you’re okay with walking to your picnic spot, you can also head to the Campers Beach Day-Use Area in between the Alouette and Gold Creek Campgrounds or the day-use area next to the North Beach Campground.

People relax on the beach at Golden Ears Provincial Park

South Beach. Photo: jjhyug/Pixabay

 

Go for a Swim

There are several beaches on the shores of Alouette Lake that make for great swimming, especially on a hot day. South Beach is the ideal place to swim since the water is shallow and relatively warm. There is a roped-off swimming area but no lifeguards. There is also a swimming area at Campers Beach.

 

Paddle a Canoe or Kayak

Rent a canoe or kayak from the kiosk at South Beach and explore the lakeshore. Beginners can splash around nearby, but more experienced paddlers can head north to secluded water-access-only beaches. Be cautious when paddling in the afternoon as the wind can kick up and create dangerous conditions.

Canoes lined up on the beach at Golden Ears Provincial Park

Photo: BC Parks

 

Take a Nature Walk

Spend some time learning about the natural world on one of the nature trails in the park. The short and easy Spirea Nature Trail is wheelchair accessible and has interpretive signs along the way. Look for the parking lot just before the turn-off to South Beach. If you’re staying at the Alouette Campground, don’t miss the Tiarella Nature Trail.

 

Go Hiking

Golden Ears Provincial Park has dozens of trails ranging from easy to challenging so there’s something for every hiker. Beginners will enjoy the short and flat walk to Lower Falls, a gorgeous waterfall on Gold Creek. If you’re looking for a moderate trail, check out our guide to the Gold Creek Canyon Loop. Experienced and fit backpackers can make a two-day ascent of Golden Ears Peak. See the park website for other trail options.

Golden Ears from Viewpoint Beach in Golden Ears Provincial Park

Golden Ears Peak from Viewpoint Beach. Photo: Taryn Eyton, happiestoutdoors.ca

 

Ride Your Bike

With over 20 kilometres of XC-style bike trails, Golden Ears Provincial Park is a great place for mountain biking. The blue-rated Menzies trail has a few cobbled rock sections and some technical climbs that will challenge you. You can also ride your bike up the East Canyon Trail on an old logging road to Viewpoint Beach which has great views of Golden Ears Peak.

 

Camp Overnight

With hundreds of sites spread across three reservable campgrounds, Golden Ears Provincial Park is one of the most popular places to camp near Vancouver. You can walk to the beach or hiking trails from all of the campgrounds, making it a great place to spend a few days in nature.

Tagged:

Comments are closed for this post

Comments are closed.