Chris N. at Eagle Bluffs:
“Both the 250 and 257 buses will take you close to the Baden Powell trailhead near Horseshoe Bay. The 250 will get you closer but is slower and the route is windy (not good if you get car-sick easily). The 257 drops you at the ferry. From here, walk towards the long-term parking lot and follow the sidewalk around to the right. This turns into a trail which takes you to an overpass. Cross over and walk 200 m south to the trailhead. With a fast group of hikers, we made it to the Donut Rock fork in an hour. This trail isn’t as clear as the main one but the only tricky spot is crossing Nelson Creek before the serious climbing starts. Stay low and look for the trail heading straight up after the second branch of the stream. The trail is well marked from here and steep. We encountered snow patches at 920 m and continuous snow at 980 m. The snow was reasonably firm and neither snowshoes or microspikes were needed. Donut Rock was reached in 2.5 hours from the trailhead. From here, we continued up to reach the junction with the main trail and headed south to Eagle Bluffs (much better views than Donut Rock). There’s no snow from the bluffs all the way down the main trail. Flagging on the boulder field was patchy – just head straight down. Return time to the ferry was under 7 hours including 2 hours of lounging at viewpoints.”
Colleen C. at Eagle Bluffs:
“Glorious day to be on a mountain – spring is certainly upon us!
The air was cool through the forest on the way up, keeping the sweat at bay, but was balmy on top. No biting bugs out yet so we basked comfortably in the sun enjoying the views of the tankers, islands, ferries, and several eagles & ravens gliding in the thermals. Lots of grouse are out, and we saw a snail!
There were only tiny patches of snow in a few sheltered spots at the bluffs (just enough for snowballs but you had to work at it). We met one person who had come from the Cypress side, she reported little snow and just wore boots. That said, there are recent reports of heavy snow on other North Shore peaks, so do your best to get current info and be prepared. Spring can be capricious!
This was my first time doing this hike by transit and it worked out well. Take the 250 or 257 to the overpass just before descending into Horseshoe Bay. From there it’s a careful crossing of Horseshoe Bay Dr and short walk back to the Black Mountain trailhead.”
Chris N. exploring the lower Mt Fromme trail network:
“The trail system on Fromme is a true rabbit warren. Even with 2 sets of detailed maps, it often took time to figure out where we were. Besides named trails, there are many minor trails. Signs are infrequent and only on the Baden Powell and Mountain Highway. We started at an unsigned trailhead beneath the power lines at Braemar Road. If you are driving, there is good street parking on the north side of the road here. Otherwise, the 230 bus travels this road. We hiked up Dreamweaver almost as far as the crossing over Mosquito Creek. We then backtracked a bit to Peer Gynt (unsigned) and climbed to the Mountain Highway which we hiked down until we got to Pink Starfish. This is a double-black bike trail but it doesn’t seem to get much traffic these days. We actually lost the trail about halfway down and followed a minor trail down to an old skid road. Going east on the road for a bit, we found Pink Starfish again. We continued east as far as Espresso which we followed to St Mary’s trail. Back along St Mary’s to Boundary and this we followed until we came out at our trailhead again. We found two old cabins on our explorations but both are in the last stages of collapse.”
Colleen C. at Eagle Bluffs:
“Maybe it’s because I’ve spent a lot of time lately in snowy mountains, but the greens of the forest here seemed particularly vibrant.
We did, quite suddenly, hit snow at about 750 m (where the boulder fields start). We continued up another 50 m or so but it was a bit of a slog moving up through knee-deep moist snow on top of loose rocks so we found a lunch spot (nice views of Horseshoe Bay and the islands) and then headed back down.
We ended up driving (thanks Susanne!) but this is a good transit hike.”
Chris M. on the Baden-Powell Trail, at night:
“If night-hiking was an Olympic event, then I would nominate the fearless group that joined me Friday evening. Nicole, Nima, Ronja, Tu Loan, Jon & Meghan all sailed through 3 hours of dark North Shore trail wandering; aided by nothing more than headlamps. Oh, and a rainbow-coloured glowing hiking pole. I took a right fork that turned out to be a wrong fork, so we ended up mostly doing an out and back along the Baden-Powell. It was a neat way to end a work week.”
Stephen H. at the West Knob:
“Sunday’s forecast-as-rainy day ended up being the perfect somewhat-sunny day. Angela, Svetlana, Nuria, Rebecca, Eugene, and Rasham joined me for a satisfying hike on the Whyte Lake, B-P, and Donut Rock trails to this viewpoint on lower Black Mountain. Views were enjoyed, mushrooms identified, and riddles solved. Trail junctions were easily spotted, though not necessarily well signed.”
Steve on Baden Powell (east):
“A slim response to my Friday callout dropped from 3 to just 2 of us, but Merv was on board with doing a reduced sized hike just the same. I’ve done the one-way version of this many times in both directions, but by leaving a car in Deep Cove and driving to Hyannis Drive we minimized the driving and maximized the hiking for this half distance trip, plus dropping Merv at his car was on my way back to the bridge with hardly a detour.
The weather was with us, a blue sky day, not too hot. We discussed the many trips each of us had done and allow me to say I was impressed by some of the killer ascents my partner for the day had tackled in previous seasons.
As we arrived in Grey Rock it was apparent the walk out to the cove was going to be far less peaceful than the first part of our trip…
We were done before noon and decided to get a Honey’s donut another time.”
Paul G. on the Baden-Powell trail:
“From the MacDonald Creek trail head at Chippendale Road, four of us kept up a quick steady pace as we climbed to the Hollyburn area where we first encountered snow at the lower cabins. By the time we reached the Boy Scout Camp our pace slowed as the trail had 0.5 to 1.0 m snow coverage. The snowpack is still quite firm, however, with minimal postholing. First Lake is still 75% covered. While the snow was gone around the former Cypress Lodge area where we stopped for lunch, the trail in the woods is still covered until just after the Blue Gentian Lake trail intersection. After that, smooth hiking through the Brothers Creek area and down to the Cleveland Dam. It was a great day for a hike!”
Steve on the Baden-Powell Trail between Deep Cove and Lynn Canyon:
“With one participant out sick and a no-show behind us the cross-over went off without a hitch. Two cars starting at opposite ends of this trail was an interesting twist on this fine day. The team coming from Deep Cove had few crowds at Grey Rock in the morning and a smooth journey the whole way, with even time for a swim. My team, coming from Lynn Canyon, had a 60 person club behind us (Vancouver’s Korean hikers), which we quickly outpaced.
The meeting in the middle was joyous as the nature-loving, quiet team (mine), and the “wild and crazy” team for the cove merged near the Samaritan trail. Lunch was short-lived as we had to get ahead of the 60 person pack again, only to find that the trail from Deep Cove to Grey Rock was teeming with dogs, smokers, and Lululemon gear. I’ve never seen so many people on that rock.
For me this was the first time starting at that end, and I found it easier to navigate some of the troublespots, but no easier on the ups and down (I thought it would be more downhill- and hike times were about equal). I think I prefer the “traditional” direction better.
We wrapped up with a snack at Honey’s doughnuts.”
Su-Laine on Eagle Bluffs:
“Holy, is the summit of Black Mountain ever a good place for a nap. Six of us were treated to a day of ideal conditions for hiking up the Baden Powell trail from the highway to Eagle Bluffs. No snow, no ice, and minimal mud were encountered. We liked it so much that we continued the 45 minute trip to the top for the aforementioned siesta amongst the mountaintops and Howe Sound views.”