Winter Walk on Vancouver’s Wreck Beach – Clothing Highly Recommended

Flickr-Davide-Tortora

Flickr: Davide Tortora

Wreck Beach, Vancouver’s infamous clothing optional beach is a summer hotspot, but have you considered a winter walk along this iconic stretch of sand? Situated in Pacific Spirit Regional Park below the cliffs of the UBC Endowment Lands, Wreck Beach features 7.8 km of magnificence! Winter is one of my favourite times to explore this natural treasure. The naked sunbathers, musicians, artists, drummers, fast food vendors and crowds are on their winter hiatus leaving ample opportunity to explore and discover this stunning stretch of shoreline.

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Winter Walk on Vancouver’s Wreck Beach – Clothing Highly Recommended

Suffering from Grouse Grind Withdrawal? 500 Reasons to set your sights on Burnaby Mountain

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Photo: R. Weiss

Every year, loyal “grinders” experience a sense of loss when Mother Nature’s Stairmaster closes for the season. Without question, the Grouse Grind is a test of strength and endurance and one of Vancouver’s most popular hikes. However, winter’s unpredictable and changing mountain conditions mean seasonal trail closures which leave outdoor fitness fans looking for their next work-out.

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Suffering from Grouse Grind Withdrawal? 500 Reasons to set your sights on Burnaby Mountain

Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Celebrate the lunar calendar’s Mid-Autumn Festival with our top picks for things to do in Vancouver this weekend, Friday through Sunday!

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Things To Do In Vancouver This Weekend

Need to escape the fog? Head to Vancouver’s North Shore

Photo credit: keepitsurreal | Flickr

Photo credit: keepitsurreal | Flickr

How’s this for a cruel joke? While downtown Vancouver has been lost in a blanket of fog for the last two weeks, the sun has been blazing down on parts of the North Shore, bringing a stretch of weather that’s more like August than October.

It’s all the result of the city’s latest temperature inversion. Vancouver is one of a handful of places on the planet prone at certain times of the year to this strange weather phenomenon.  In very basic meteorological terms, everything has gotten flipped. Normally, temperatures get cooler with elevation. But right now, a cool, dense air mass is trapped on the ground beneath a warmer layer of air.  Short story: The city is fogged in below the inversion cap.

But there is an easy way to get relief.  I found out for myself over the weekend when I checked out the North Shore’s Cypress Mountain. Continue reading:
Need to escape the fog? Head to Vancouver’s North Shore

Day-hike of a lifetime? Spring trekking on Mount Seymour in Vancouver

8201504109_f68b83faf2_z It’s no secret that Vancouver is well endowed in the nature department (How many cities boast a 1,000-acre park downtown?).  But what sometimes goes unnoticed is how truly rugged the landscape gets almost immediately after you cross the Lions Gate Bridge.

Take Mount Seymour Provincial Park.  Rising to 1,449 metres, Mount Seymour is an easy 40-minute drive from downtown in North Vancouver.  Known for its skiing, the mountain is also crisscrossed with some spectacular hiking trails that bring you up into dizzying alpine terrain.   In a matter of minutes, you can go from the parking lot to a high-altitude wonderland of sheer cliffs and panoramic mountain views.

I found out for myself recently, on a sunny afternoon when temperatures at the ski area parking lot were a balmy 10 degrees Celsius.  But while spring was in the air, snow – metres of it – was still in the ground.  I struck out on the trail to First Peak, which starts in the far corner of the parking lot, adjacent the chair lift.

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Day-hike of a lifetime? Spring trekking on Mount Seymour in Vancouver

Urban Hiking in Vancouver: Black Mountain

Bowen Lookout Cypress Mountain

Everyone knows that Vancouver is surrounded by stunning, snow-capped mountains.  What many people don’t realize is how close the city truly is to those rugged peaks.

Within a 30-minute drive from downtown, you can access fantastic trails running through pristine alpine terrain.  I call it urban hiking – since you can be back in the city in time for dinner.  During the summer, one of my hands-down favourite hikes – offering big rewards with a minimum of time and effort – is the quick ascent of Black Mountain, one of the peaks of Cypress Mountain.

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Urban Hiking in Vancouver: Black Mountain