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The best fall hikes in Vancouver

Summer in Vancouver came and went in a flash. All of a sudden we’re back to rain. But we’ve still got time before the snow comes to get in some fall hikes in Vancouver!

Hiking in the forests and the mountains (on clearer days) is one of the best things to do in Vancouver in the fall. BC hiking trails come alive in the fall; the leaves turn a beautiful colour, you can see BC’s larch trees go all golden and the waterfalls become more powerful again.

So if you’re looking for things to do in Vancouver during fall, or about what to do in Vancouver BC on a rainy day,  make sure you check out these fall hikes near Vancouver.

NEW 2023 UPDATE!
You will need a day pass to access popular BC parks, Garibaldi (from June 14 – Oct 9), Joffre (May 6 – Oct 9) and Golden Ears (June 14 – Sept 4). The passes are free and available from 7 am two days before your visit. All details & information here

Make sure to check trails are open before heading out. This is best done by checking the district’s website (e.g District North Vancouver)

AllTrails is my go-to hiking app for finding, planning, and navigating while I’m out on the trails. With offline maps on AllTrails+ you can be confident you’re still on the right track, even without mobile signal.

Best fall hikes in Metro Vancouver

Be prepared

ALWAYS remember to take your 10 essentials with you, no matter how short or long the hike you’re planning is. Get a reminder of what they are here.

Remember to leave no trace when you hike, take out everything you take in.

Check trail conditions before you go. It’s fall in Vancouver but that doesn’t mean there won’t be snow at some higher elevations.

What to pack for Vancouver hikes

Foreshore trail

If you’re looking for a Vancouver hike close to home then don’t forget about Pacific Spirit Regional Park over by UBC.

This easy trail in Vancouver takes you past Wreck Beach (famous for its nudity), past an old WWII tower and along the beach. Don’t forget to soak up the views of the Vancouver mountains.

Check the tides before attempting this as otherwise, you’ll have to navigate over some slippery rocks. That’s doable but harder!

  • Time: 3 hours
  • Distance: 5km
  • Elevation: 40m
  • Trailhead: Acadia Beach parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 20 minutes

Pacific Spirit Regional Park

Wander the lush green forest of Pacific Spirit Regional Park (ideally with a coffee or tea in hand). Work your way over trickling creeks and past the muddy bogs of Vancouver’s South Endowment Lands.

Length varies but the elevation is pretty minimal

Beaver lake trail

beaver lake stanley park

The interior of Stanley Park can often be forgotten about in favour of cycling the Seawall but don’t forget the Beaver Lake trail. This lake is also where scenes of 50 Shades of Grey were filmed!

It’s an easy Vancouver hike and can also be cycled. Keep an eye out for the raccoon family near the Lost Lagoon.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 6.5km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Near the Stanley Park Rose Garden but can be started anywhere downtown
  • Distance from Vancouver: 10 mins from Coal Harbour area

Burnaby Mountain

Burnaby Mountain, near Simon Fraser University, is a popular spot for trail running in Vancouver and it’s also popular with mountain bikers but there’s no shortage of hiking on Burnaby Mountain.

Watch out for the aptly named steep Cardiac Hill, but enjoy the green forest and city views.

  • Time: Up to 3 hours
  • Distance: Variable, around 7km gives you a good workout
  • Elevation: 300m
  • Trailhead: Pipeline Trail off North Road in Burnaby
  • Distance from Vancouver: 35 minutes

Hill Knoll Trail

minnekhanda best fall hikes

Go hiking in Minnekhanda Park in Coquitlam which is full of trails to explore. You can stick to the marsh area or head up the hills to High Knoll.

From up here you get amazing views of Mount Baker on a clear day.

Keep an eye open for wood ducks and beavers in the marshland.

  • Time: 2.5 hours
  • Distance: 10km
  • Elevation: 180m
  • Trailhead: Minnekhada Regional Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour drive

Crystal falls

These small but impressive waterfalls near Vancouver in Coquitlam are easy to get to. It’s just a short trail along the Upper Coquitlam River until you reach Crystal Falls.

Enjoy the moss covered forest and hop over the tiny streams.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Unmarked trailhead on Karley Crescent where it meets Shaughnessy Street in Coquitlam
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Sendero diez vistas

diez vistas buntzen lake (1 of 1)

If your Spanish is any good then you’ll have translated this as ‘10 views’ which is exactly what you’ll get. If you’re in Vancouver in October you should still have time to do this beautiful Vancouver hike.

You’ll get views of Deep Cove, downtown Vancouver and the Indian Arm too.

Read more about the Diez Vistas hike.

  • Time: 7 hours
  • Distance: 15km
  • Elevation: 460m
  • Trailhead: Buntzen Lake parking lot in Port Moody
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Sawblade falls

This waterfall hike near Vancouver in Coquitlam’s Pinecone Provincial Park is accessed by taking the easy Woodland Walk trail. You’ll head through the forest and over creeks.

First, you’ll reach Woodland Falls and then you’ll get to Sawblade Falls after a few switchbacks.

  • Time: 3 hours
  • Distance: 8km
  • Elevation: 180m
  • Trailhead: Left of the metal gate at the end of Harper Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45mins

Kanaka Creek Cliff Falls

The Cliff Falls area of Kanaka Creek in Maple Ridge is a great spot for an easy forest fall hike near Vancouver.

Enjoy a picnic with a view of the waterfall and make sure to check out the Bell-Irving salmon hatchery in the fall!

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 4km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Cliff Park, 251 Street Maple Ridge
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Mike lake

mike lake best fall hikes in vancouver
Photo by Bob Kronbauer

The hike to Mike Lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park is a short and scenic trail. Go over tree roots through calm forest and past lake views.

Be sure to check out onto the dock for a full view of Mike Lake before you leave.

  • Time: 45 mins
  • Distance: 2km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Fern Avenue in Maple Ridge
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Gold Creek falls

Another short hike in Golden Ears Provincial Park is the hike to Gold Creek Falls.

This Golden Ears hike starts near Alouette Lake in Maple Ridge and takes you through rainforest before coming out at views of the falls from above and below.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 5.5km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Parking lot on Golden Ears Parkway near Alouette Lake in Maple Ridge
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Mt. Golden Ears

Mt Golden Ears summit 2
Mt Golden Ears summit 2

Another long and difficult hike near Vancouver is Mt Golden Ears. Whilst you can do this in a day if you start as soon as the park gates open (7am), it’s best done as an overnighter.

Expect steep rocks, ladders and some snow all year round.

  • Time: 12 hours
  • Distance: 24km
  • Elevation: 1500m
  • Trailhead: West Canyon parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 20 mins

Green Timbers lake

green timbers lake best fall hikes in vancouver
gofishbc.com

At the heart of the Green Timber Urban Forest is Green Timbers Lake. It’s a great place to go spotting bald eagles, ducks, salamanders, woodpeckers and Douglas squirrels too.

There’s plenty of hiking around here to be done; over 10km worth!

  • Time: Varies
  • Distance: Varies
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: 14600 Block of 100 Avenue, Surrey
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Best fall hikes on the North Shore and West Vancouver hikes

Dog Mountain

dog mountain best fall hikes near vancouver

Dog Mountain, Vancouver is a pretty short and easy hike that makes a perfect fall hike and one of the best North Vancouver hiking trails. This Dog Mountain hike, Vancouver is a great snowshoeing trail in the winter.

On a clear day you get amazing views of beautiful Vancouver.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 3km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Mount Seymour car park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 50 mins

The BCMC

If you’ve done the Grouse Grind but don’t fancy queueing for the gondola or doing it again then take on the BCMC. The BCMC is a popular hike in the Vancouver area but remains less busy than the Grouse Grind.

It’s still a steep one though and remember to watch your footing!

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 3km (one way, going down not recommended)
  • Elevation: 853m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot in Garibaldi Provincial Park off Mamquam Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30mins

Norvan falls

frozen norvan falls in winter

Norvan Falls is a great day hike in Vancouver that you can do all year round. Rumour has it the waterfall sometimes freezes during winter!

In the fall, this waterfall hike in North Vancouver will see you crossing over streams, roots and rubble as you travel through old-growth Cedar forest to the falls.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 14km
  • Elevation: 195m
  • Trailhead: Lynn Headwaters Regional Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Fisherman’s trail

fishermans trail north vancouver

This easy but long walk follows Seymour River through the verdant forest (noticing a theme with these fall hikes near Vancouver?). At the end, there’s beautiful views of the river and mountains.

Take a packed lunch to enjoy along the way!

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 12km
  • Elevation: 115m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot at the end of Lilloet Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Quarry rock

hiking quarry rock deep cove

The Quarry Rock hike is one of the classic easy hikes in Vancouver. It’s still got some elevation to it and the trail is rather rough so still be prepared.

The best thing about hiking Quarry Rock in fall, is that it’ll be a little quieter than it is in the summer!

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 3.8km
  • Elevation: 100m
  • Trailhead: Baden Powell Trailhead in Panorama Drive in Deep Cove.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 minutes

Twin falls

twin falls lynn canyon best fall trails

Twin Falls are on the Baden Powell Trail near the Lynn Valley Suspension Bridge which you’ll cross. They’re easy to get to and there’s a wooden bridge viewing platform and in the fall you can expect this hike in the Vancouver area to be quieter.

Although it’s a short hike you can expect a lot of stairs.

  • Time: 20 minutes
  • Distance: 1km
  • Elevation: 65m
  • Trailhead: Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Capilano pacific trail

capilano pacific trai best fall hikes in vancouver

These Vancouver walks in the Capilano area are fantastic for a rainy day. They take you along the route of the Capilano River from shores and beaches through thick rainforest and salmon to the magnificent Cleveland Dam.

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 15km
  • Elevation: 236m
  • Trailhead: Ambleside Beach in West Vancouver
  • Distance from Vancouver: 15 minutes

Brothers creek loop

hiking brothers creek west vancouver trail

On the Brother’s Creek Loop you’ll pass some more Vancouver waterfalls on this intermediate hike and hike past the Candelabra Fir; a huge tree that towers over the surrounding red cedar forest on the mountainside of West Vancouver.

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: 350m
  • Trailhead: Millstream Road near Henlow Road in the British Properties area.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 minutes

Lighthouse Park

hiking in lighthouse park vancouver

Lighthouse Park is a Vancouverites’ favourite after-work spot, especially in summer. But don’t forget about these hiking trails in the fall. There are lots of short, easy trails to take.

Enjoy ocean views, huge, old-growth Western Red Cedars and picturesque Starboat Cove.

  • Time: Up to 2 hours
  • Distance: 6km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Lighthouse Park parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Cypress falls

cypress falls hike (1 of 1)

This easy hike along Cypress Creek and through the moss-covered forest takes you past two gorgeous waterfalls and the canyon below. It’s a great fall hike near Vancouver since it’s unlikely to be covered in snow.

Read more about the Cypress Falls hike.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 3km
  • Elevation: 130m
  • Trailhead: Cypress Falls Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 minutes

Whytecliff park

whytecliff park west vancouver

Whytecliff Park is home to some of the best hikes in West Vancouver. It boasts spectacular views of the Howe Sound and there are many easy trails you can hike.

Go through the forest, check out the beach and watch the scuba divers.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 2km
  • Elevation: 75m
  • Trailhead: Overflow parking lot off Marine Drive near Horseshoe Bay
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Whyte lake

whyte lake hiking trails near vancouver

Whyte Lake Park is a small, peaceful lake in the hills above Horseshoe Bay and the largest park in West Vancouver. It’s one of the best hikes near Vancouver.

There’s an easy trail you can do to the lake which is surrounded by wetlands, creeks and forest before ending at a small lakeside dock.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 5km
  • Elevation: 160m
  • Trailhead: Gravel parking area just off Westport Road
  • Distance from Vancouver:  30 minutes

Baden Powell Trail

baden powell hike eagle bluffs

The entire Baden Powell Trail takes you from Deep Cove to Horseshoe Bay. It’s a massive North Vancouver trail.

You’ll hug the North Shore’s steep mountain slopes, go through scenic forests and over several creeks. There are quite a lot of stairs and uphill sections along the way.

The whole thing is 48km so you’ll want to attempt it over a few days and there’s no camping allowed anywhere along the route.

It’s definitely one to check off your Vancouver places to see bucket list!

Read about Horseshoe Bay to Grouse | Read about Grouse to Deep Cove

  • Time: 10+ hours split over a couple of days
  • Distance: 48km
  • Elevation: 1200m
  • Trailhead: Depends on which end you want to start
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30-45 mins

Capilano Canyon

capilano canyon best fall hikes near vancouver

This easy trail offers beautiful views of Grouse Mountain and the famous Vancouver Lions in the distance.

It’s a shorter version of the Capilano Pacific trail and takes you past the interpretive salmon hatchery trail and the Cleveland Dam

  • Time: 1 hour
  • Distance: 2.6km
  • Elevation: 90m
  • Trailhead: Cleveland Dam, North Vancouver
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Lynn Creek

lynn creek best fall hikes

Lynn Creek is a great place thing to do on a rainy day in Vancouver. Hike through the Cedar and Hemlock forest, enjoy the views of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands and then head back to the waters of Lynn Creek.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 5.1km
  • Elevation: 160m
  • Trailhead: Lynn Headwaters Regional Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins

Admiralty point

Admiralty Point is a short, easy hike in Belcarra Regional Park. On this hike you can enjoy views of Mount Seymour, Deep Cove, and Burnaby Mountain out over the waters that link Indian Arm and Burrard Inlet.

The trail meanders through the forest and along the shoreline to a rocky outcrop and beach.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 5km
  • Elevation: 1160m
  • Trailhead: Belcarra Regional Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Belcarra Lookout

belcarra bluffs hike near vancouver

The Belcarra Bluffs hike is in Belcarra Regional Park near Port Moody, about an hour east of Vancouver. The Belcarra Bluffs lookout viewpoint looks out onto the entrance to Indian Arm, towards Burnaby and the North Shore Mountains. You can see Deep Cove and even Downtown Vancouver in the distance.

The hike begins from the Belcarra Regional Park parking lot and can be done as a loop or an out and back.

  • Elevation: 300 m
  • Distance: 6.6 km
  • Duration: 2-3 hours
  • Difficulty: Easy – Moderate

Rice lake

rice lake best fall hikes near vancouver

This calm and quiet lake in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park in North Vancouver is a great place for a rainy afternoon stroll. There are some great viewpoints and a few benches.

Sit and watch the fisherman while you take in the beauty of the area.

Read more about the Rice Lake trail.

  • Time: 1 hours
  • Distance: 3km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Parking lot north of Capilano College
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins

Bowen Lookout

bowen lookout st marks summit hike

As the days get shorter and rainier Bowen Lookout is one hike you can start mid-afternoon once the rain has died down and be home before it’s dark. It’s one of my favourites places to hike in Vancouver.

Bowen Lookout is a popular offshoot for people hiking St Mark’s Summit. It’s steep in sections but it’s fairly short and the views are awesome.

  • Time:1.5 hours
  • Distance: 4km
  • Elevation: 110m
  • Trailhead: Cypress ski area parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Sasamat lake

Sasamat Lake is always super busy during summer but come autumn it’s a great place for hiking and relaxing away from the crowds.

  • Time:4 hours
  • Distance: 8km
  • Elevation: 100m
  • Trailhead: White Pine Beach parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Shoreline Trail

The easy Shoreline trail hike takes you around the most eastern part of the Burrard Inlet. There are wooden boardwalks and grassy parks.

Once you reach Old Orchard Park you can take a break and have a fall picnic.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 6km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Rocky Point Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins

Hanes Valley

The Hanes Valley is a very difficult trail on Vancouver’s north shore. It takes you from Lynn Creek to the top of Grouse Mountain.

The most difficult part of this North Vancouver hike is crossing a steep boulder field. You’ll need hands and feet to summit this.

Do not attempt this in snow and only do it if you’re an experienced hiker with strong navigational skills.

  • Time: 8.5 hours
  • Distance: 16km
  • Elevation: 1320m
  • Trailhead: Top of Lynn Valley Road in North Vancouver
  • Distance from Vancouver: 35 mins

Goldie Lake

Hiking Goldie Lake is an easy trail that meanders through the forest on top of Mount Seymour. After this is opens up to a great lake and luckily is one of the less well known ones.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 3km
  • Elevation: 100m
  • Trailhead: Mount Seymour ski area car park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 50 mins

Cabin Lake

cabin lake best fall hikes in vancouver
janameerman.com

Known as one of the best swimming holes in Vancouver’s north shore, Cabin Lake is a great place for hiking in Vancouver BC in fall. And, if the fall weather is warm you can cool down with a dip in the lake!

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 5km
  • Elevation: 357m
  • Trailhead: Cypress Mountain Parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Mystery Lake

Mystery Lake is in Mount Seymour Park and although you have to climb plenty of rocks and tree roots it’s an easy fall hike for all the family.

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 3km
  • Elevation: 150m
  • Trailhead: Mount Seymour ski area parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 50 mins

St Mark’s Summit

st marks summit at sunset

St Mark’s Summit is one of the best hikes in Vancouver with incredible views. It has a lot of switchbacks but they’re manageable for experienced hikers and the trail is easy to follow.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 11km
  • Elevation: 460m
  • Trailhead: Cypress Mountain parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Eagle Bluffs

hiking eagle bluffs near vancouver

Eagle Bluffs is another fantastic hike up at Cypress Mountain. This fall hiking trail takes you past Cabin Lake and Black Mountain so you get three hikes for the price of one!

It’s steep but rewarding and has incredible views of other hikes around Vancouver such as  The Lions, Brunswick Mountain, Bowen Island and the Sunshine Coast.

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 8km
  • Elevation: 350m
  • Trailhead: Cypress Mountain ski area parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Mt Fromme

mt fromme hike (2 of 6)
misty woods on the way to Mt Fromme

Head through the beautiful forest of Mount Fromme and enjoy views of Garibaldi Provincial Park, Crown Mountain, Mount Seymour and Goat Mountain.

Time: 5 hours
Distance: 10km
Elevation: 880 m
Trailhead: Top of St. Georges Avenue in North Vancouver
Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Big Cedar & Kennedy falls

big cedar and kennedy falls trail

This is a perfect rainy day hike in Vancouver’s North Shore. It’ll take you into the backcountry over tree roots and past patches of snow (in late fall – early spring).

Say “hi” to the Big Cedar tree (you can’t miss it!) and carry on for the last few kilometres until you reach Kennedy Falls.

Read more about hiking to Kennedy Falls & the Big Cedar.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 10km
  • Elevation: 150m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot for Mt. Fromme
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Mt. Seymour

mt seymour camping (9 of 19)

Mt Seymour is one of the local ski hills but in summer it’s perfect for hiking. There are a few peaks to the summit on this trail before you get to a panoramic view of the city and the Coastal Mountain Range.

Read more about hiking Mt Seymour.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 9km
  • Elevation: 450m
  • Trailhead: Mt Seymour parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 50 mins

Mt Strachan

plane crash mt strachan hike (5 of 5)
mt strachan cypress vancouver hikes

Mt Strachan is a challenging hike up to the top of one of the three mountains near Vancouver that make up Cypress Mountain ski resort.

Lookout for the debris of a Royal Canadian plane that crashed as you hike down.

Read more about the Mt Strachan trail.

  • Time: 5.5 hours
  • Distance: 10.5km
  • Elevation: 550m
  • Trailhead: Cypress Mountain ski area parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Goat Mountain

If you want views of Vancouver, Mt Baker, Vancouver Island and Garibaldi Provincial Park then head on a fall hike of Goat Mountain.

Take on the rocky slopes and switchbacks, the chains and ropes and enjoy it all at the summit.

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 8km
  • Elevation: 300m
  • Trailhead: Top of Grouse Mountain
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Hollyburn Mountain

view of the lions from hollyburn mountain vancouver trails

Hollyburn Mountain is the perfect hike to do when you only have half a day and want to escape into the wilderness.

The peak offers a scenic view of sections of Vancouver, Burrard Inlet, and the Lions off in the distance.

If you only have half a day for a fall hike near Vancouver then tackle Hollyburn mountain. At the top there are views all around of the Georgia Strait, the Gulf Islands, the Lions and Grouse Mountain to the east.

  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: 450m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot for Cypress Mountain cross-country ski area
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 mins

Lynn Peak

lynn peak best fall hikes near vancouver

Lynn Peak is a steep rocky trail through the lush forest until you come out to a rocky overlook with great views of the city.

Read more about the Lynn Peak trail

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 9km
  • Elevation: 720m
  • Trailhead: Lynn Headwaters Regional Park
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins

Crown Mountain

crown mountain trail vancouver

Crown Mountain isn’t one for the faint-hearted. It’s very steep as you go down Crown Pass and up Crown Mountain.

The Crown Mountain hike uses chains to climb down rocks, cross boulder fields and climb over large trees.

  • Time: 7 hours
  • Distance: 10km
  • Elevation: 385m
  • Trailhead: Grouse Mountain. Take the gondola to the top or the Grouse Grind if you’re feeling active!
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Dilly Dally Loop

The Dilly Dally Loop is another very difficult hike on the east side of Buntzen Lake which goes around Eagle Mountain, traverses Tangled Summit and then climbs up Dilly Dally Peak.

  • Time: 12 hours
  • Distance: 25km
  • Elevation: 1142m
  • Trailhead: Buntzen Lake parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Lions Binkert trail

the lions hike vancouver (8 of 10)
east lion

The famous Lions are on many Vancouverites bucket list. The snow on the Lions clears very late so fall actually makes a great time to do the Lions hike Vancouver.

Take on the switchbacks, rocks and boulders for the reward of making it to these famous rocks!

Find out more about the Lions hike.

  • Time: 8 hours
  • Distance: 16km
  • Elevation: 1280m
  • Trailhead: Small parking area off Sunset Drive in Lions Bay.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Jug Island

Up there with Whytecliff Park in terms of popularity is the Jug Island hike. There’s a little bit of a steep climb on this hike but the final part is downhill to the beach.

The views of the Indian Arm here are just perfect if there’s an early dusting of snow on the mountains!

  • Time: 2.5 hours
  • Distance: 5.5km
  • Elevation: 100m
  • Trailhead: Belcarra Regional Park parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Swan Falls

Go waterfall chasing on this fall hike to Swan Falls near Buntzen Lake. You can see the waterfall from both the bottom and you can also hike up to the bluffs a the top of the falls too for an alternative perspective.

  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • Distance: 10km
  • Elevation: 195m
  • Trailhead: Buntzen Lake recreation area
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Velodrome trail

Another alternative to the Grouse Grind is the Velodrome Trail in Burnaby. This hike requires you to go up more than 500 wooden steps which takes most about an hour.

It’s a great workout if you want to get out of the gym and into the great outdoors.

  • Time: 1 hour
  • Distance: 3.5km
  • Elevation: 240m
  • Trailhead: Northeast corner of the Velodrome near the Barnet Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 30 mins

Coquitlam Crunch

Done all the other Grouse Grind-type trails? Next up is the Coquitlam Crunch.

There aren’t many great views on this hike but it’s good for getting your sweat on!

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 4.5km
  • Elevation: 244m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot down gravel road off Lansdown Drive
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins

Widgeon Falls

This is an awesome fall hike near Vancouver. It starts by taking a canoe or kayak ride and is then followed by a short, easy hike to Widgeon Falls.

You can do it all in one day or choose to camp by the river to make a weekend of it.

  • Time: 5-6 hours
  • Distance: 6km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: End of Neaves Road north of Pitt Meadows.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 15 mins

Best fall hikes in Squamish

Elfin lakes

elfin lakes in squamish

Elfin Lakes is a great hike near Vancouver that you can do all year round although in winter you’ll need your snowshoes!

The Elfin Lakes hike is an intermediate hike which takes you to 2 small but gorgeous lakes. The trail is in Garibaldi Provincial Park as are another few of these best fall hikes in Vancouver.

There’s a bit of a climb to get to the alpine area of the Elfin Lakes trail and then a descent towards the lake and overnight hut.

Read more about the Elfin Lakes trail.

  • Time: 6 hours
  • Distance: 22km
  • Elevation: 600m
  • Trailhead: Parking lot in Garibaldi Provincial Park off Mamquam Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45mins

Quercus Viewpoint

Quercus Viewpoint best fall hikes in vancouver

Murrin Provincial Park is a great place to head when the weather isn’t ideal. It’s a pretty short hike but it’ll get you puffing since it’s pretty steep and has lots of stairs.

Once you’re up through the forest (which looks beautiful in fall making this a great autumn hike near Vancouver), you’ll come to Quercus Viewpoint.

You’ll have to climb some slippy rocks first so be careful if it’s been raining. There’s a nice bench here to take in the views of Howe Sounds and Browning Lake; a great place for a breather!

  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Distance: 2km
  • Elevation: 130m
  • Trailhead: Just off the sea to sky highway south of Squamish
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45mins

Brohm lake

brohm lake squamish (2 of 3)

One of the best intermediate hikes in the Vancouver area is Brohm Lake. You’ll wander through the forest and climb up to viewpoints over the Cheakamus River and the Tantalus Mountain Range.

Read more about the Brohm Lake trail.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 7.5km
  • Elevation: 100m
  • Trailhead: Just off the sea to sky highway north of Squamish
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 25mins

Alice lake

alice lake

Surrounded by towering mountains and forest, Alice Lake is great for a small fall hike. It’s also a great swimming and kayaking spot (just maybe save the swimming for the summer months!).

Take the easy Four Lakes Trail which takes you past lakes, creeks and through the forest.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 6km
  • Elevation: 200m
  • Trailhead: Alice Lake parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 20mins

Stawamus Chief

high falls best fall hikes in vancouver

The Stawamus Chief is the second biggest granite monolith in the world where spectacular ocean and mountain views await you. You can do just one peak or all three.

For a more detailed overview of this hike in Squamish check out this guide.

  • Time: 6 hours
  • Distance: 11km
  • Elevation: 600m
  • Trailhead: Shannon Falls parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

High Falls

high falls best fall hikes near vancouver
photo: dreamcommitsucceed

The intermediate trail to High Falls isn’t one for those scared of heights. Use ropes to scramble over the rocks and take in the stunning vistas of the waterfall and mountains.

  • Time:5 hours
  • Distance: 12km
  • Elevation: 650m
  • Trailhead: 23km off the Squamish Valley Road off the Sea to Sky highway
  • Distance from Vancouver: 2 hour

Petgill lake

petgill lake best fall hikes near vancouver
janameerman.com

Want a Vancouver hike with beautiful coloured lakes? Try hiking to Petgill Lake. This great fall hike near Squamish starts with a steep scramble before levelling out into revines and switchbacks.

At the end you’ll not only have Petgill Lake but views of Howe Sound, Mount Sedgwick, and the Tantalus Mountain Ranges.

  • Time: 6 hours
  • Distance: 11.5km
  • Elevation: 650m
  • Trailhead: Just opposite Murrin Lake Provincial Park parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Best fall hikes on the Sea to Sky between Vancouver and Squamish

Tunnel bluffs hike

tunnel bluffs hike

The old route for the tunnel bluffs hike was much harder than the current approach. Due to parking restrictions, you now need to do the Tunnel Bluffs hike from Lions Bay.

This instagram famous hike in Vancouver is best done on a clear fall day for some of the best views of Howe Sound.

It’s always busy so make sure you get there early and take your card to pay for parking!

Read a full guide to the Tunnel Bluffs hike here.

  • Time: 3-5 hours
  • Distance: 11.5km
  • Elevation: 470m
  • Trailhead: Lions Bay.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Sea to Summit Trail

sea to summit trail squamish bc (1 of 4)

The Sea to Summit trail on the way to Whistler is also known as the Upper Shannon Falls trail. It’s one of the best hikes in Squamish and it starts in the same place as the famous Squamish hike; The Chief.

It’s a steep hike offering views of Howe Sound, the Chief and Shannon Falls. If you don’t fancy climbing down you can take the gondola back.

  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • Distance: 7.5km
  • Elevation: 918m
  • Trailhead: Bottom of the Sea to Sky Gondola
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour

Crooked Falls

crooked falls best fall hikes in vancouver
photo: thetravelingurbanite

This BC waterfall hike is remote and you can access it on the Sigurd Creek Trail. It’s a difficult uphill hike and it’s in the wilderness so make sure you have your 10 essentials and are prepared.

Hiking poles are recommended for this one!

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 6km
  • Elevation: 380m
  • Trailhead: Left side of the road 2.4km after turning left onto Ashlu Road from Squamish Valley Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Best fall hikes near Whistler

Helm lake

Helm Lake is a pretty difficult hike found in Garibaldi Provincial Park. It’s steep and climbs up a series of switchbacks. Then you get amazing views of Black Tusk, Cinder Cone, and the surrounding area.

If you’re up for some fall backcountry camping then this area is perfect for that.

  • Time: 9 hours
  • Distance: 26km
  • Elevation: 920m
  • Trailhead: Cheakamus Lake parking lot down a dirtroad just off of Whistler
  • Distance from Vancouver: 2 hours 15 mins

Black Tusk

black tusk hike garibaldi provincial park

Black Tusk is one of the better known Vancouver trails. It’s difficult but super scenic. It can be done in a day if you’re ready for a long one, or you can camp at Taylor Meadows.

You’ll start (and continue) with a lot of uphill. First through the forest and then through meadows, past beautiful Garibaldi Lake and up on the final climb.

The final part of the Black Tusk hike is more of a scramble so make sure you’re prepared and capable of doing this.

  • Time: 11 hours
  • Distance: 29km
  • Elevation: 1740m
  • Trailhead: Rubble Creek parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45mins

Panorama Ridge

panorama ridge hike vancouver whistler

Before the snow hits make sure you try out Panorama Ridge in Garibaldi Provincial Park. This is one of the ultimate fall hikes in Vancouver and offers some of the most scenic views of all the hikes on this list.

If you take this all on in a day make sure you’re prepared for a long one!

Read more about hiking the Panorama Ridge trail.

  • Time: 8-10 hours
  • Distance: 30km
  • Elevation: 1520m
  • Trailhead: Rubble Creek Parking Lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45mins

Cheakamus Lake

cheakamus lake hike

Hiking to Cheakamus Lake is easy but long. You’ll work your way through Garibaldi Provincial Park and towards the shores of the turquoise Cheakamus Lake.

You should always be prepared for some snow on this best hike near Whistler, especially as we head into fall in Vancouver.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 16km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Cheakamus Lake signposted parking lot, down a dirt road, just south of Whistler off the Sea To Sky Highway.
  • Distance from Vancouver: 2 hour 15mins

Whistler train wreck

whistler train wreck sea to sky highway

This is another easy hike near Whistler which has an unusual sight at the end! You’ll hike through forest and then cross a suspension bridge before coming out at a small clearing with several train carriages. These carriages were abandoned in the forest after a train wreck in 1956.

They’re covered in murals which makes for some great photo opportunities!

Find out more about the Whistler Trainwreck.

  • Time: 1 hours
  • Distance: 2km
  • Elevation: 30m
  • Trailhead: Across from a parking area on a small road off Jane Lakes Road in Function Junction
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Brandywine Falls

If you’re driving the sea to sky highway from Vancouver to Whistler a great stop to make is Brandywine Falls.

These waterfalls are just a short, easy walk away and you’ll have an impressive view of the waterfalls falling into a cavern full of rockslides below.

Head further along and you can also see Daisy Lake.

  • Time: 30 mins
  • Distance: 1km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Brandywine Falls parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 minutes

Crater Rim trail + Loggers Lake

loggers lake whistler (1 of 6)

Head into Whistler’s Interpretive Forest on this uphill hike. The Crater Rim Trail gives you views of Loggers Lake and Garibaldi Provincial Park.

Did you know? Loggers Lake is one of the warmest lakes in Whistler as it isn’t glacier fed and the rocky volcano walls protect it from the coldest air?

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 4.5km
  • Elevation: 230m
  • Trailhead: Cheakamus Forestry Road near Function Junction, Whistler
  • Distance from Vancouver 2 hour

Garibaldi Lake

garibaldi lake hike whistler

The icy blue Garibaldi Lake is worth climbing three hours uphill for. Soak in the views of the lake with the glacier-capped mountains behind. For an even bigger adventure carry on to Black Tusk or Panorama Ridge.

Read more about hiking to Garibaldi Lake.

  • Time: 5 hours
  • Distance: 18km
  • Elevation: 820m
  • Trailhead: Rubble Creek parking lot
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45 mins

Best fall hikes in the Fraser Valley

Cascade Falls

cascade falls near harrison hot springs

If you love hikes with waterfalls or hikes with suspension bridges then you’ll love the Cascade falls Hike near Mission. It’s super easy, more of a walk than a hike but it’s beautiful!

You take a short walk uphill from the carpark and cross over a suspension bridge to a great viewing platform of the falls.

  • Time: 30mins
  • Distance: 0.75km
  • Elevation: 40m
  • Trailhead: Cascade Falls Regional Park parking lot, off Ridgeview Road, northeast of Mission near Deroche
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Harrison Grind

No prizes for guessing that this is named after the Grouse Grind. It’s not one for inexperienced hikers as it consists of a steep hike and an even trail.

The Harrison Grind trial is a challenge for sure!

  • Time: 6 hours
  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: 620m
  • Trailhead: Hot Spring Road at Balsam Avenue in Harrison Lake
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45 mins

Sumas Mountain

Hiking up Sumas Mountain is difficult but this Fraser Valley hiking trail takes you through coastal BC’s lush forest, over a river and past the beautiful Chadsey Lake and views of Fraser Valley.

On a clear fall day in Vancouver, you may even get views of Mount Baker in the US!

  • Time: 6.5 hours
  • Distance: 13.5km
  • Elevation: 715m
  • Trailhead: About 9 km down Sumas Mountain Road after the turnoff from North Parallel Road, in Abbotsford
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 minutes

Bridal Veil Falls

bridal veil falls best fall hikes in vancouver

This isn’t much of a hike but exploring Bridal Veil Falls in autumn is a great shout. The falls are impressive and you can make things even more “fall” by getting a slice of apple pie from the airport!

  • Time: 15 mins
  • Distance: 800m
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Bridal Falls Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 mins

Lindeman Lake

lindeman lake best fall hikes in vancouver

Lindeman Lake is a beautiful green lake that takes you uphill into the trees and across Post Creek. On a misty fall hike it’s even prettier, if that’s possible!

Learn more about the Lindeman Lake trail.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 3.4km
  • Elevation: 300m
  • Trailhead: 40km down Chilliwack Lake Road
  • Distance from Vancouver: 2 hours 15 mins

Mt Cheam

Mt Cheam in the Fraser Valley takes you through lush meadow and up a series of switchbacks to the top. Don’t get too close at the top as the rocks aren’t the most stable.

  • Time: 4.5 hours
  • Distance: 9.5km
  • Elevation: 700m
  • Trailhead: Chipmunk Creek Forest Service Road, Chilliwack
  • Distance from Vancouver: 2 hours 45 mins

Elk Mountain

Elk Mountain is also in the Chilliwack area and has great views of Cultus Lake and the Fraser Valley once you’re at the top.

This is the perfect fall hike before it gets too cold.

  • Time: 4 hours
  • Distance: 7km
  • Elevation: 800m
  • Trailhead: 10km down Elk View Road, Chilliwack
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 45 min

Mt Thom

A Chilliwack favourite is the hike to the top of Mount Thom. It’s a steady climb along a series of switchbacks and the top of the mountain offers views of Cultus Lake and the Fraser Valley.

  • Time: 2.5 hours
  • Distance: 10km
  • Elevation: 375m
  • Trailhead: Sylvan Drive, Promontory neighbourhood
  • Distance from Vancouver: 1 hour 30 mins

Best fall hikes in Manning park

Frosty Mountain

summit mt frosty manning park
from the summit

This difficult hike in Manning Park takes you to the summit of Frosty Mountain and past Lightning Lake. In mid-September you can experience the gorgeous golden Larches.

From the summit, you’ll have amazing views of the Coastal Mountain ranges.

It’s a steady ascent and involves scrambling over some loose rocks too.

  • Time: 8 hours
  • Distance: 22km
  • Elevation: 1160m
  • Trailhead: Lightning Lake day use area
  • Distance from Vancouver: 3 hours

Best fall hikes on Bowen Island

Killarney Lake

killarney lake things to do on bowen island

Over on Bowen Island, Killarney Lake is one of many quiet walking trails through marshland and cedar tree stumps.

Misty fall and snowy winter only make this place more magical.

  • Time: 2 hours
  • Distance: 9km
  • Elevation: Minimal
  • Trailhead: Snug Cove ferry terminal
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 min drive & 2 min ferry

Dorman Point

dorman point bowen island

Dorman Point has fantastic views of the Howe Sound and back over the Mainland BC. It’s a steep hike, especially towards the end!

You can easily combine this with the Killarney Lake hike above. There’s a trail that takes you through the forest from Snug Cove.

Don’t make the mistake of walking along the road as I did, the forest is prettier!

  • Time: 1hours
  • Distance: 2.5km
  • Elevation: 105m
  • Trailhead: Snug cove ferry terminal
  • Distance from Vancouver: 45 min drive & 20 min ferry

Mount Gardner

mt gardner, bowen island

Mt. Gardner is Bowen Island’s highest peak. The hike starts by going through a meadow to Killarney Lake and then up, steeply, through the forest.

On a nice fall day, you’ll be able to see the Sunshine Coast, West Vancouver, Burrard Inlet and Howe Sound.

  • Time: 7 hours
  • Distance: 17km
  • Elevation: 719m
  • Trailhead: Snug Cove ferry terminal
  • Distance from Vancouver: 40 mins drive and 20 mins ferry ride

See more Vancouver hikes. 

Last Updated on July 10, 2023 by Hannah

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