The Norvan Falls trail in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park, North Vancouver, is a great hike for a rainy day since you’re in the forest, chasing a waterfall viewpoint! The trail is long, though mostly flat, so it’s a great option if you’re looking for a easy-intermediate hike. You can also do a Norvan Falls trail run which is great since there’s little elevation. I hiked to Norvan Falls in the midst of winter and got to see the falls all frozen but it’s a popular hike all year round. Here’s everything you need to know about the Norvan Falls hike near Vancouver.
Norvan Falls Trail, North Vancouver
Stroll through the lush green forest in North Vancouver towards the impressive Norvan Falls on this easy, but long, hike. It makes the perfect thing to do on a rainy day in Vancouver and it’s easily accessible. This Lynn Valley waterfall is one of the most impressive in the area so it’s well worth the hike.
How to get to the Norvan Falls trailhead
Norvan Falls directions: The trailhead for Norvan Falls is in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park. From Vancouver, head over Lions Gate or Iron Workers’ bridge and take Highway #1 to the Lynn Canyon Exit. Drive along Lynn Valley Road northbound, pass the shopping centre and pass the turnoff to Lynn Canyon Park. Continue straight as the road narrows and drive as far as you can until you come to a parking lot and can go no further. You can park there for free or, if there are no remaining spaces, backtrack to the overflow parking lot to find one and walk back towards the main one you just left.
You can also get public transport by taking the sea bus to North Vancouver and then the #228 bus to Lynn Valley. Leave the bus at the Dempsey/Lynn Valley Road stop. After getting off the bus, walk down the paved road into the forest towards the parking area for the trailhead.
The parking lots here fill up quickly on nice weekends so plan to do the Norvan Falls hiking trail early on in the day.
Know before you go
- Always practice leave no trace ethics. Not sure what those are? Get a refresher here.
- Carry bear spray with you on all BC hiking trails. Get more bear safety tips here!
- Wondering what to pack for Vancouver day hikes? Here’s a hiking packing list!
- Refresh your memory about hiking safety with BC Adventure Smart.
- Don’t leave home without your 10 essentials. They could save your life!
- Dogs are allowed at Norvan Falls on leash.
The Norvan Falls hike
From the parking lot walk across the Lynn Creek Bridge to a large map directly ahead of you. Here you can sign in on the registration board which I highly recommend doing if you haven’t told anyone your plans (you should!) and especially if you’re hiking solo. This lets park rangers know who is in the park and is checked so a search can be launched if you fail to return.
Sign in down, turn left and begin walking along the creek through a forest of second-growth Cedar. The first 1.7km of the trail is along a wide gravel road and is part of the lowe Lynn Loop Trail which many people hike from the Rice Lake parking lot. Also known as the Cedars Mill trail, this section is usually quite busy as it’s a popular spot for North Vancouverites to walk their dogs.
Around 4km into the hike, you’ll come out to a clearing. Here, make a left towards the river and enjoy the views of both the river and Goat Mountain (accessed from Grouse or the Hanes Valley). Then, head up the rocky debris towards a sign and turn left to continue hiking along the Headwaters Trail.
The next 2.5km is often quite muddy and slippery so take care as you hike through the forest full of moss and lichens.
You’ll start hearing the sound of water again as you get closer to Norvan Creek where a steel suspension bridge has been built. At this point, you turn away from the bridge, to the right, and walk along a trail following the creek uphill. A few hundred metres on, you’ll be able to see Norvan Falls through the trees. You can enjoy it from here or backtrack and find your own spot to enjoy the view from.
Hike back the way you came and don’t forget to sign the other half of your registration sheet to sign out!
Norvan Falls hike statistics
Know the essential hike details for hiking the Norvan Falls Vancouver hike in BC.
Is Norvan Falls Frozen?
If there’s been around week of cold temperatures (just below zero) chances Norvan Falls is frozen (at least in parts). If the temperatures have been well below average for a few days and there’s snow in downtown Vancouver, I’d be surprised if the falls hasn’t begun to ice up!
What to pack for Norvan Falls?
Make sure you look at these packing lists for the Norvan Falls hike.
More hikes near Vancouver
Check out these other Vancouver hikes with amazing views!