Deer lake is located near the centre of Burnaby, BC and is about 35 ha (90 acres) in area. The area is a nature oasis in the City of Burnaby. There are a number of easy walking trails and points of entry. I parked at the parking lot off Sperling Avenue. The trail around the lake is short and sweet; they are flat with many elevated boardwalks to protect the sensitive aquatic ecosystems. To add some distance to your hike, I suggest a walk up to see the original stairs for Oakalla Prison (which used to be located in the area).
Distance: 3.5 km (just lake loop)
Time: 1 hour
Low point: 20 m
High point: 38 m
Elevation gain: 18 m
Trailhead and parking: 49° 14’ 11.3” by 122° 57’ 53.5” (Google Maps and navigation)
Whatcom Falls Park is an urban oasis in Bellingham, Washington. The park features a number of multi-use trails through a cool forest. It’s a great hike on a hot summer day ! There are waterfalls, swimming holes, a great old stone bridge and a decommissioned railway trestle. There are so many routes here, but I picked a nice loop (because I like loops !).
The geology of the area features sandstone, which is eroded smooth and holes form in the rock. This park is similar in features and geology to Kanaka Creek Park in Maple Ridge, BC.
Distance: 6.7 km (4.2 mi) (loop)
Time: 1-2 hours
Low point: 29 m
High point: 117 m
Elevation gain: 88 m
Trailhead and parking: 48° 45’ 4.7” by 122° 25’ 43.7” (Google Maps and navigation)
The route with downloadable gpx…
Before heading out on your hike, make sure you are well prepared. This means, having the TEN ESSENTIALS. It is also important to leave a trip plan (route details and estimated return time) with someone you trust.
Bring your smartphone, fully charged and put it in airplane mode while hiking. I always bring back-up battery packs for extra piece of mind. It is highly recommended that you bring a GPS device; I use my smartphone with a GPS app (Backcountry Navigator). The GPS will work in airplane mode. Learn how to use it before your hike.
For anyone new to hiking, there is a rule to which hikers follow; it is called “Leave No Trace” or LNT. The concept is generally to pack out what you pack in and respect nature, so all future visitors can enjoy what you have enjoyed.
To learn more about LNT, please check out this BLOG by a certified LNT Trainer.
Burnaby Lake is the largest lake in Metro Vancouver and there is a trail that goes all the way around. For an added bonus, there are a number of different entry points to start your hike/walk. For my hike today, I started at the east end of the lake and parked in the Avalon Avenue parking lot.
There are a number of small creeks that feed the lake, including Still Creek at the west end. The lake has a dam (Cariboo Dam), which leads to the Brunette River, which then goes to the Fraser River.
Distance: 11 km (loop)
Low point: 15 m
High point: 25 m
Elevation gain: minimal
Trailhead and parking: 49° 14’ 47.6” by 121° 55’ 6.0” (Google Maps and navigation)
The full name of this area is the Pitt-Addington Marsh Wildlife Management Area.
It is located where the Pitt Lake drains into the Pitt River.
There are a network of dykes and trails taking you along the River/Lake and marshland. This is more of a walk, as it is completely flat, but the distances can be over 10 km, depending where you go.
The Pitt-Addington Marsh WMA supports over 200 bird and 29 mammal species. This WMA is generally a flat, alluvial floodplain made up of dyked and undyked areas. Pitt Lake is the largest tidal freshwater lake in the world. There is a rare reverse delta at the mouth of the Pitt River, a result of deposition which occurs when rapidly flooding tides dam and reverse the main Fraser River outflow back up into Pitt Lake. The WMA also contains Pitt Polder Ecological Reserve, an area of sedge bog and two forested granitic outcrops rising 114 metres above the floodplain.
Interesting facts about Pitt Lake:
It is 24 km long
Is considered a tidal fjord lake
There is on average a three foot tide range
Pitt Lake is in a typical U-shaped glacial valley
The Upper Pitt River originates in Garibaldi Provincial park
Distance: varies, but my route was 6.6 km
Low point: close to sea level
High point: close to sea level
Elevation gain: minimal
Trailhead and parking: 49° 20’ 55.8” by 122° 37’ 00” (Google Maps and navigation)