Trip 165 - July 26, 2019 (Friday)
Chilliwack Dyke Trail
Distance from Vancouver:
Approximately 110 kilometers via Highway 1, Yale
Road, Young Road, Tower Rd, Brinx Rd and McDonald Rd.
Liked: Numerous fine rural vistas, mountain views, Fraser River views, no bugs.
Of Note: Limited parking, no shade, snakes in the area, horse manure on the trail, some traffic and railroad noise.
Vancouver, Coast & Mountains BC Backroad Mapbook (2nd edition) Approximate Trailhead Coordinates: Page 4 (Chilliwack) D3.
Chilliwack Dyke Trail is Chilliwack's answer to Abbotsford's Matsqui Trail. You walk/bike/ride a horse along a flat path, and observe fine rural views, mountains, and Fraser River. And, just as the case with Matsqui Trail, there are several access points, which allow to start the trail at several locations. Chilliwack Dyke Trail is slightly shorter and not as busy. Parking is more limited too, but should not be an issue. It's just a very pleasant trail, despite some snakes, no shade, occasional pile of horse manure, and some unleashed dogs, even though leashing is mandatory on this trail. Getting to the trail can be a bit tricky, as it's located behind a maze of short North Chilliwack roads, but the drive to the trail itself is quite pleasant as well.
We biked the whole trail (almost 12 km one way) and back, and saw about 20 people in total, mostly walking dogs, but one was jogging, another was biking, and a few were just walking and enjoying the nature. There were also two small snakes (about half a meter long) hanging out on the trail very close to each other, but they hurriedly ran away upon our approach.
Several "Canyon to Coast Trail" signs you see along this trail (and even on the side of some roads as you are driving towards the trailhead) refer to a possible trail from Hope in the East to Salish Sea in the West. Chilliwack Dyke Trail is going to be a part of that 500 km+ trail, thus the signs. You can find more information on Canyon to Coast Trail on Fraser Valley Regional District's site.
1. We are Westbound (towards Vancouver) on Highway 1, approaching Exit 120 (Young Rd). Please, note, that there is no Eastbound Exit 120, so, if driving from Vancouver or other points West, take Exit 123 (Prest Rd), go North, turn left at the intersection of Prest Rd and First Ave, and then right onto Young Rd. Taking Exit 119 (Vedder Rd / Yale Rd) is not as straightforward, as there is no left turn from Yale Rd onto Young Rd. Or make it really simple - take Exit 123, make a U-turn, head Westbound on Highway 1, and then take Exit 120 (Young Rd).
2. Now at the exit ramp. Young Road is seen straight ahead.
3. Here is Young Road at the end of the highway exit ramp. Zero your odometer here and make a right turn.
4. Young Road goes through much of downtown Chilliwack.
5. Then, Young Road enters rural North Chilliwack. You will pass by Island 22 Regional Park turnoff 5.2 km after leaving Highway 1.
6. Keep right 400 meters later - Young Road will become Tower Road.
7. Yet 400 meters further, make a right turn from Tower Road onto Brinx Road.
8. Brinx Road looks neat.
9. At 6.7 km past the highway (700 meters after Brinx Road begins), make a left turn onto McDonald Road.
10. McDonald Road looks quite fine as well.
11. After driving for 600 meters on McDonald Road, you are at the trailhead. To the left is overflow parking for 4-5 vehicles - the entrance is just past the first "sharp turn" arrow sign with a black on a yellow background.
12. Main parking (for 3-4 vehicles) and the trailhead are to the right. Coordinates: N 49'12'178. W 121'56'369. Elevation: 6 meters. The trail begins at the gate seen straight ahead. No motorized vehicles are allowed, and the City of Chilliwack offers a fine of up to $10K to those who ignore the warning sign.
13. Chilliwack Dyke Trail goes for almost 12 kilometers from here. You see rural houses, fields of corn, cattle farms, a tree farm, Fraser River, and many mountains. Some rabbits and snakes may keep you company as well.
Here is a short video of the views while riding a bike. Please, excuse the camera shake.
More ihikebc.com videos are on our YouTube Channel.
14. Lots of corn. And lots of mountains.
15. The trail is very flat, made of hard packed gravel. Though, the second half of the trail features a stretch of several hundred meters long, where gravel was somewhat loose and deep, making biking a bit challenging.
16. There are gates on Chilliwack Dyke Trail where it crosses city streets. The first crossing is Ballam Rd, 1.5 km after the start of the trail. You may park fairly close to these gates and, thus, get onto the trail at various points. Or, if you have two vehicles, it is possible to make it a one way trip, with the help of a car shuttle.
17. The view after the Ballam Road gate.
18. At 2.1 km arrives McSween Road crossing. This is actually where a trail ribbon appeared on our GPS with Backroad Mapbook Software. The trail on the GPS is called "South Fraser Chilliwack Dyke Trail". The trail ribbon continued until the end of the actual trail.
19. A fine view to the left.
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