West Vancouver is home to some very large and expensive properties and houses. Occasionally, houses have been priced and sold at around CAD$30,000,000. As of 2011, West Vancouver's average house sells for over CAD$2,000,000; 95% of the houses or close to 16,000 homes are worth over CAD$1 million. West Vancouver is often referred to as one of the wealthiest municipalities in Canada.
Houses at 30 Million! Yikes!! I knew it was VERY expensive to live there, but WOW. Honestly many of the homes are quite dated, though they are starting to upgrade. The views from some of these lots though are amazing and certainly must contribute greatly to the price of these homes.
Here is one of the views at the beginning of the hike (which is right beside some of the most expensive homes in West Vancouver). I could imagine waking up to this each day. The home below us has been demolished and is in the process of being rebuilt.
Unlike our last hike, this was the only view of the ocean and cities that we were to see on this hike. This was more of a "nature" hike.
As this was an easier level hike, we took along both dogs. They had a blast! Here are Heike and Tia exploring one of the many bridges. The dogs were in heaven on this whole hike. I was happy to be able to take Tia on this one. I don't feel right about taking her on the longer, steeper hikes. She would do it, but I don't want to hurt her.
I loved how most of the bridges are handmade, but still quite rustic.
The first half of this hike was, in my opinion, kind of boring. The above pictures look decent, but they were certainly of a better portion of the trail. Most of it was on a rather wide path, with either a dirt or rock trail (see pic below). Some of the forest was pretty, but some of it got kind of bushy. I think ideally you'd want to have some good conversation while getting through this section. There are a few side trails that we didn't explore this time. Perhaps that would add a bit more interest.
Heike having a little rest break
It wasn't a steep climb up, just steady. Suddenly we came upon the crossing of Brother's Creek which had a lovely bridge across it. We stopped here for a little rest and some pictures. We had set up the camera on a little ledge and just as it went off, this cyclist rode across. Poor guy felt so bad. He couldn't see the camera and didn't realize what we were doing. Afterwards he took a few more pictures for us to "make up". I actually think it's kind of funny that he's in this picture. Honestly, everyone you meet when out in nature are super nice.
I still can't believe this guy, and his 3 buddies, rode their bikes up there. The direction they came from is fairly challenging terrain to hike. I can't imagine how you'd possibly bike it. Though, when we saw his friends they were carrying their bikes, so maybe they did a lot of that (still freakishly hard!).
As you can see, there is a little bit of snow just behind us on the right. Apparently there is a trail from here that goes to a lake and it still has quite a bit of snow. We debated taking it, but decided not to this time. I've since looked up information on that trail and it seems like it would be worth trying.
The hike down the other side of the loop was AWESOME! Waterfalls, interesting terrain, beautiful forests, LOTS of gorgeous bridges to cross. I just loved this part of the hike and it made up for the monotonousness of the first half.
I just realized I did not get ANY pics of the actual trail on the way down. I will make sure to do that next time I go ... which could be very, VERY soon.
On this particular bridge that crossed over the main creek, there was a "pool" under one side and it just screamed "WISHING WELL" to me. And Lord knows I could use some wishes to be granted these days. So I dug out a couple quarters and my daughter & I both made our wishes and tossed them into the water. After I threw mine I was kind of puzzled. I turned and looked at my daughter and said, "Can you see that?" ... which she did.
My quarter got stuck between two rocks and was sitting there plain as day. You couldn't make that happen if you tried! My pessimistic view was that my quarter got stuck so now my wishes will not be carried away by the river to be granted. However my husband said that perhaps this meant my wishes weren't being washed away, they were firmly planted and would come true. I wished for an awful lot though so I don't know ...
This hike was wonderful to take the dogs on. There were SO many water sources for the dogs to drink from or walk in. As we got further along I noticed Heike was opting to walk through the water rather than over the bridges that were over the small run-off creeks.
It's REALLY hard to get a good picture of a solid black dog... Luckily my sweet little Tia has lots of grey hairs like her Momma so we can find her in these pictures. She had SO much fun on this hike. It wiped her out for the day, but she loved every minute of it.
The final portion of this hike is along the Baden Powell Trail (a 48 Km trail through the North Shore Mountains, named after Lord Baden Powell, founder of Scouting). This section was gorgeous, and easy hiking. I could have taken in the surroundings for hours. On such a warm day it smelled so much of pine that it reminded us of fresh Christmas trees.
I have every intention of going here again. It was an easy enough hike that most people in reasonable shape can do it. I have tentative plans (hinging on weather) to go up in the very near future with a small group of friends. Maybe I can convince them to explore some of those side routes, or perhaps venture further up the trail to the lake.