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A view from the chairlift at Grouse Mountain overlooking Vancouver

Snowshoeing Vancouver: The Best Local Snowshoeing Destinations

Looking to embark on an adventure snowshoeing Vancouver? You’re in luck! The city’s local mountains offer a haven for outdoor enthusiasts seeking a new winter adventure.

Snowshoeing is an invigorating activity that combines hiking and trekking through snowy terrains. So, you’ll get to experience the region’s stunning beauty while burning a bucketload of calories.

Trust me, snowshoeing in Vancouver is an experience that combines serenity, exercise, and the beauty of nature in one delightful package.

So let’s get strapped in❄️

Top Vancouver Snowshoeing Destinations:

  1. Sea to Sky Gondola
  2. Cypress Mountain
  3. Mount Seymour
  4. Grouse Mountain
  5. Garibaldi Provincial Park
  6. Whistler Blackcomb

Vancouver Snowshoeing

Situated amidst the picturesque Coast Mountains, Vancouver offers an enviable mix of urban comfort and natural splendour. The area’s dense forests, scenic trails, and towering peaks make it an idyllic playground for skiers, snowboarders, and of course, snowshoers!

Whether you’re a beginner looking to make your first snowy footprints or a seasoned pro hunting for an adrenaline rush, Vancouver has a trail that’s just right for you.

Sounds like fun, you say? But where am I supposed to get the equipment? Not to worry, we’ve got a host of Vancouver snowshoeing tours perfect for visitors or beginners looking to try out this fast-growing winter sport.

Just click on the links below for more information. In the meantime, let’s check out the terrain you’ll be traversing.

The Best Snowshoeing Vancouver Destinations

A mother and son snowshoe in the wilderness
Instagram: @seatoskygondola

Sea to Sky Gondola- The Most Scenic Snowshoeing Near Vancouver

Located near Squamish, the Sea to Sky Gondola is an Austrian-style ski gondola that scales Mt. Habrich in the Sea to Sky Corridor. It is known to be a popular tourist attraction. However, many are unaware that the area is also a fantastic destination for snowshoeing enthusiasts and beginners alike.

Once you reach the summit, you can check out stunning views of snow-dusted peaks, turquoise fjords and serene forests. Trust me, you won’t find a more picturesque backdrop for snowshoeing anywhere. And with an extensive, well-marked trail network that caters to all skill levels, it is a true powder paradise.

Whether a beginner or an experienced snowshoer, the Sea to Sky Gondola provides the opportunity to immerse yourself in a truly unforgettable snowshoeing adventure.

And if you’re worried about the 60-minute drive, the link below provides round-trip transportation and snowshoe rental in one convenient package.

Related: The 5 Best Day Trips from Vancouver in Winter

panoramic view of cypress mountain ski hill near vancouver canada

Cypress Mountain- The Best Snowshoeing Trails Vancouver

Looking for something a little closer to home? Well, Cypress Mountain is located just 30 minutes from downtown and boasts abundant snowshoeing trails that are suitable for all skill levels.

The Nordic Area offers dedicated snowshoeing routes that meander through old-growth forests that provide breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and Howe Sound.

Beginners can enjoy gentle trails like the Hollyburn Ridge Loop, while experienced snowshoers can tackle more challenging routes like the Black Mountain Loop.

Cypress Mountain also provides rentals and guided tours for those who wish to enhance their snowshoeing experience. You can check out the link below for more information.

Related: Your Complete Vancouver Skiing Guide

snowshoers snowshoeing at seymour mountain vancouver bc canada

Mount Seymour – The Best Snowshoeing in Vancouver for Beginners

Only a short drive from the city and considered one of the best snowshoeing Vancouver destinations, Mount Seymour is another popular place for snowshoeing lovers.

With a range of trails catering to different abilities, this mountain offers stunning panoramic views of the North Shore. The Dog Mountain Trail is a fantastic option for beginners, providing a relatively easy and scenic loop that overlooks the city.

For more experienced snowshoers seeking a challenge, the Mount Seymour Trail offers a steeper ascent and rewards with spectacular vistas at the summit.

Just remember, Seymour is the furthest from downtown out of the three local mountains. And you won’t encounter as many amenities as at Grouse or Cypress.

Related: When Does Ski Season Start in Vancouver?

The view from Grouse Mountain at dusk

Grouse Mountain- The Closest Vancouver Snowshoe Trail to Downtown

Renowned for its winter sports and breathtaking scenery, Grouse Mountain is a must-visit destination for snowshoeing enthusiasts.

What’s more, the foot of the mountain is just a 20-minute drive from downtown Vancouver (depending on traffic). So, this alpine playground provides a variety of trails suitable for all levels right on your doorstep!

The Blue Grouse Loop offers a gentle and picturesque route for beginners. Intermediate snowshoers can tackle the Dam Mountain Loop, which presents a moderate challenge with rewarding views.

For a more strenuous adventure, the Snowshoe Grind trail provides a challenging ascent similar to the famous Grouse Grind hiking trail. But be warned, it’s not for the faint of heart!

Related: The Ultimate Grouse Mountain Skiing Guide

aerial view of mount garibaldi with blue lake

Garibaldi Provincial Park – The Best Snowshoeing Near Vancouver for Advanced Snowshoers

Venturing a little farther from Vancouver, Garibaldi Provincial Park showcases awe-inspiring natural beauty and is a snowshoer’s paradise. Located between Squamish and Whistler, this park offers numerous trails that cater to different abilities.

The Elfin Lakes trail is popular, providing a moderate-to-challenging snowshoeing experience with jaw-dropping vistas of snow-capped peaks and frozen lakes. As you can see above, the stunning views of Garibaldi Lake are not to be missed – especially in wintertime.

Remember to check BC avalanche conditions and plan accordingly before embarking on more advanced routes in the park. Check out our article on how to get from Vancouver to Whistler for more information on how to navigate the Sea to Sky Highway.

Related: The Top Things to do Near Squamish

A skier slaloms down Whistler Mountain at dawn
Instagram: @whistlerblackcomb

Whistler Blackcomb- The Best Snowshoeing in BC

Looking to head a little further up the road? Widely renowned as a world-class skiing destination, Whistler Blackcomb also offers exceptional snowshoeing opportunities. With its vast expanse of alpine terrain, you can explore an array of trails suitable for various skill levels.

The Lost Lake trail network is a great option for beginners, while the Rainbow Lake trail presents a more challenging adventure for seasoned snowshoers.

Additionally, Whistler provides snowshoe rentals and guided tours for those who want to maximize their experience. Not to mention, you can enjoy a world-class apres experience in Whistler’s best restaurants, bars, and spas.

The only problem? You’ll be looking at a 90-minute drive in each direction. So you might want to bunker down in a Whistler hotel to fully enjoy the area.

Related: The 6 Best Whistler Tours from Vancouver

Vancouver Snowshoeing FAQs

Snowshoeing is a winter activity where you wear special “shoes” or frames on your feet that distribute your weight over a larger area. This prevents you from sinking too deeply into the snow, making it easier to walk or hike in snowy terrains.

Think of it like hiking, but winter-style! The sport is growing in popularity due to the peaceful tranquillity offered in the snow-covered backcountry. Not to mention, it is a great calorie burner if you opt for more advanced trails.

The best Vancouver snowshoeing trails are in the local mountains on the city’s North Shore. This includes Grouse Mountain, Cypress Mountain, and Mount Seymour. Each mountain offers a wide variety of trails catering to every skill level.

Not at all. Snowshoeing is beginner-friendly, and many trails around Vancouver cater to first-timers. Furthermore, you can take a guided snowshoeing tour that includes equipment rental, instruction, and advice for beginners.

Just be sure to pick a trail or tour that matches your comfort level, and you’ll have a blast!

Many of the popular snowshoeing locations around Vancouver, like Cypress Mountain or Grouse Mountain, offer on-site snowshoe rentals. Plus, several rental shops in the city can gear you up.

Alternatively, you can embark on a Vancouver snowshoeing tour that includes equipment rental and offers instruction and guidance.

Why, of course! There is a seemingly unlimited amount of backcountry trails available in the area around Whistler. And there is a host of guided whistler snowshoeing tours available as well.

Not to mention, the Sea to Sky Corridor between Vancouver and Whistler offers some of the best snowshoeing in North America around Squamish, the Sea to Sky Gondola, and Garibaldi Provincial Park.

Yes, there are! If you’re new to snowshoeing or just want a guided experience, several tour operators in Vancouver offer snowshoeing trips – in most cases around Cypress Mountain. It’s a fantastic way to learn and enjoy the beauty of the region.

Decided on Your Snowshoeing Vancouver Adventure?

Now, you’ve discovered a new way to embrace the winter beauty of Vancouver. Snowshoeing in Vancouver is more than just an activity. It’s an invitation to connect with nature, challenge oneself, and create unforgettable memories.

So, the next time the snow blankets the city, strap on those snowshoes and set out to explore the enchanting winter wonderland that is Vancouver.

And remember, for personalized recommendations, reach out to me on the Vancouver Planner Facebook page or leave a comment below. Until then, good luck on your snowshoeing Vancouver adventure.

Enjoy the powder❄️


I've used online guides on five continents to find the world's greatest travel spots and this is my chance to give back - with insider info on my home, the mighty Vancouver BC!

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