Trip 129 - August 30, 2017 (Wednesday)
Panorama Ridge Trail Hike
Garibaldi Provincial Park (North of Squamish BC)
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Liked: Views of Black Tusk, Garibaldi Lake, Black Tusk Lake. Creek views with wildflowers. Virtually no bugs.
Of note: The trail is very popular, and is likely packed on Summer weekends. Parking could be an issue when it's busy, forcing one to park far away along the access road and extend the hike accordingly. Some dust on the trail from the parking lot to the main split (about 6 km in total). A few muddy sections. Some snow still on the ground (including the trail) late in the season. Hiking boots and poles are highly recommended (the last stretch of the trail is steep, with loose stones).
Vancouver, Coast & Mountains Backroad Mapbook (2010 edition) Coordinates: Page 22 (Squamish) C1-D1-E1. The latest edition of Backroad Mapbook for this and other regions, as well as GPS maps, are available at BackroadMapbooks.com.
103 Hikes in Southwestern British Columbia (2008 edition): hike #21.
Related Website: Garibaldi Provincial Park - BC Parks Official Site.
Related Trip: 031 - Black Tusk Trail Hike.
Other Trips in Squamish Area: Squamish River Forest Service Road Washout, Mamquam Lake Trail Hike, Squamish River FSR Ashlu Main Hike (second trip), Second Trip to Crooked Falls, Crooked Falls / Sigurd Creek Trail Hike, Squamish River FSR A-Main Branch (first trip), Brandywine Falls Provincial Park, The Squamish Spit, Squamish River Forest Service Road E-Main Branch, Shannon Falls, Squamish River Forest Service Road, Squamish Valley Road, Railway Heritage Park, Downtown Squamish BC, Stawamus Chief Trail Hike.
Panorama Ridge Trail is popular for a good reason - relatively close to Metro Vancouver, easy access off Highway 99, (for the most part) moderately challenging trail, and simply grand views of lakes and mountains. This trail is about 15 km one way, and follows the same route as Black Tusk trail until a split, where one turns to the left to visit Black Tusk, and goes straight to Panorama Ridge. We visited Black Tusk in 2010, and were very impressed. This time, while there was no "is this for real?" factor from the first visit almost seven years ago, the views were still absolutely amazing. For more photos of this Park and more complete directions, please visit our Black Tusk Trail trip report.
17. The path starts getting steep, with loose stones. This is where hiking boots and poles would be especially helpful.
18. The higher you climb, the better the view behind you. Black Tusk Mountain and Black Tusk Lake.
19. The path is getting more and more challenging.
20. There was still some snow on the ground.
21. Chances are the snow is always present here.
22. The end of the hike is near.
23. The final climb.
24. And then it's "panorama" ridge indeed. Looking back is Black Tusk.
25-29. And looking forward is Garibaldi Lake. The photos are left to right.
30. This hiker chose a good day to fly a drone.
31. To the left is a valley.
32. And here is the rest of Panorama Ridge. Most hikers stopped at the Garibaldi Lake viewpoint, though, from where we took this photo.
Here is our video of the surrounding area:
33. We hiked till the end. The views didn't get better. So, if you want to save 10-15 minutes in total, Garibaldi Lake viewpoint is a good place to turn around and head back. Coordinates for the trail end: N 49'57'278 W 123'00'761. Elevation: 2,120 meters (1,565 meters elevation gain from the trailhead).
It took us about 6 hours to hike to the top, and 4.5 hours to get back. Despite crowded conditions at the beginning of the trail, Panorama Ridge is a great hike, leading to some of the best views near the Metro Vancouver area. Highly recommended.
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