Coverage of the Waterfall and
the Trail to Calcheak Suspension Bridge
Distance From Vancouver:
106.5 km via Highway 1 West and
Highway 99 North.
waterfall, "shifting ground" visual effect, easy path to Calcheak
Suspension Bridge, and the bridge itself.
Of note: The waterfall is a very popular
attraction - get ready for big crowds on weekends. Railroad crossing is
required to reach Brandywine Falls. There are two paths to Calcheak
Suspension Bridge, and the one starting by the waterfall is much rougher
than the other path, starting closer to the parking lot. Railroad crossing is required to reach the
suspension bridge too.
Vancouver, Coast & Mountains Backroad Mapbook (2010 edition)
Page 29 (Whistler) D7.
The latest edition of Backroad Mapbook for this
and other regions, as well as GPS maps, are available for purchase atBackroadMapbooks.com.
Brandywine Falls is a huge waterfall, and one
of the most beautiful and easily accessible ones in Southwestern British Columbia. After you park your
vehicle, 10 minutes via an easy path is all it takes to reach the
viewing platform. If you feel like walking a bit more, why not take a
path to Calcheak Suspension Bridge. The round trip time is about two
hours. Beware, though. There are two paths which lead to the bridge, and
one path is much rougher than the other. See the trip report below for
1. We have crossed Lions Gate
Bridge in Vancouver en route to Brandywine Falls.
2. Howe Sound never ceases to impress.
3. We are now driving on Highway
99 North past the Squamish Adventure Centre in
Brandywine Falls Provincial Park is 41.5 km North of here.
Highway 99 Sea-to-Sky in Squamish British Columbia Canada
4. Since Howe Sound ends at
Squamish, the great views pretty much end there as well. Beyond
Squamish, this bridge is
one of the few sights worth mentioning en route to the falls.
BC Highway 99 Sea-to-Sky between Squamish and Whistler
5. 41.5 kilometers past Squamish
Adventure Centre, get ready to turn right.
BC Highway 99 Sea-to-Sky at the Brandywine Falls Provincial Park
6. We have arrived to
Brandywine Falls Provincial Park.
Brandywine Falls Provincial Park Province of BC Canada
7. The parking lot for regular
vehicles has about 50 spots, and the bus/RV lot can hold another 10-15
vehicles. On a busy weekend, the parking could be tight.
Brandywine Falls Parking Lot South of Whistler BC Canada
8. To reach the waterfall, you
need to walk across a bridge which has a roof above it. This is an
important landmark, if you want to go to Calcheak Suspension Bridge, as
the easy path to the bridge starts just to the left after you cross this
small bridge. You can see the green directional sign far ahead on the photo below.
Photo of Brandywine Falls Provincial Park
9. Here is the close-up of that
directional sign. As mentioned above, the
easy path to Calcheak Suspension Bridge starts here - just turn left. To
reach Brandywine Falls you need to turn right. And very close to
Brandywine Falls viewing platform is another sign directing you to
Calcheak Suspension Bridge. However, that sign leads to a much rougher
path. Beware, as there is nothing written on either of those signs to indicate
which path is easy, and which one is hard. The difference between the
paths is very substantial. The easy path can be tackled by just about
anyone, as it has a few small hills, and that's about it. The difficult
path requires a proper level of fitness. Hiking
boots and trekking poles
would come handy there too.
10. At the waterfall viewing platform.
Brandywine Falls from the Observation Platform Province of British
11. And here is a trick for your
eyes. Stare at the waterfall for 5-10 seconds, and then quickly look to
the left - you would see the canyon rising. Better yet - look to the
right beyond the platform, where the path is located - you would see the
path moving up, as if pushed from below. It's quite something to behold.
12. After the waterfall, we returned to the
directional sign seen on photo #7, and turned left to go to Calcheak
Suspension Bridge. As mentioned above, this path is quite easy, unlike
the path which starts by Brandywine Falls.
Calcheak Suspension Bridge Trail Province of BC Canada
13. There are several small lakes on both sides of the
path. This is the best looking one, and it comes after you come to a
T-Junction, where you would need to turn right. Turning left leads to
Highway 99, which noise is, alas, quite prominent as you are walking
this path. The rougher path has very little to no noise, if that is a
deal breaker for you.
14. Soon, you cross the railroad tracks and see this
sign. This is where the rough and easy paths meet. So, if you want to
walk a loop, that's where you take the rough path to get back to the
parking lot, but not before you go check out the bridge first, of course
15. Here is the suspension bridge. It is not very
high, but quite long.
Calcheak Suspension Bridge
16. At the campground located by
the bridge, you will find a map of the nearby area. The suspension
bridge is depicted at the bottom of the map on the left side. Highway 99
is seen in the upper left corner.
Map of Calcheak Campgrounds off BC Highway 99 South of Whistler Canada
17. Cal-Cheak South Campground has several level
sites. The cost of
camping is $11 per night. Maximum allowed stay is 14
Picture of Cal-Cheak South Camground
18. Calcheak Suspension Bridge seen from the other
side (from Cal-Cheak South Campground).
Calcheak Suspension Bridge BC Canada
19. On the way back, at the sign seen on photo #12, we
took the rough path to get back to Brandywine Falls Provincial Park. In
exchange for your sweat, you get interesting views and less noise from
Calcheak Suspension Bridge Path Province of British Columbia Canada
20. This ladder comes handy, but ups and downs on the
rough path are plentiful, while ladders are few.
Calcheak Suspension Bridge Hiking Trail BC Canada
21. Nicely done.
Thus, if all you want is to take a look at an awesome
waterfall and spend no more than 30 minutes doing so, Brandywine Falls
Provincial Park gives you that opportunity. And, if you have a few hours
at your disposal, walking to Calcheak Suspension Bridge via the easy
path, or challenging yourself via the rough path are your options as