Friday, September 09, 2011

Eagle Bluffs and Black Mountain in Cypress Provincial Park

For Wednesdays walk this week I chose another new route to Eagle Bluffs via Black Mountain within Cypress Provincial Park.  As it is late summer and the weather is good I am choosing higher elevation walks that are not possible during the winter and spring months.  This route is about 3hrs of walking plus stops and is close to home which was convenient as I had a showing I needed to be back for at 1pm, so we started out early, walking around 8am.

Views of the city from the lookout on Cypress Bowl Road on the way up the mountain.


Looking West across the water to UBC and Vancouver Island on the horizon.


We continue up and park at the Cypress downhill ski area.


Views of the ski runs cut out through the forest, the chairlifts waiting for the new season to begin in a couple of months.


The lodge with restaurant, guest services etc nestled in the valley bottom.


This location was host to the freestyle, snowboard and halfpipe events at the Winter 2010 Olympics.


We start making our way up the side of Black Mountain.  This was a new trail developed in 2004 and is very well maintained, although steep in places. The first km or so is gravel before turning to a natural forest floor trail.

IMG_5554 Stopping to get our breath, these views to the West behind us.


Across the valley, one of the Lions just visible in the middle of the photo.

IMG_5559 Mojo jumps in the first small lake he finds.  Little does he know there are dozens upon dozens of these in Cypress Provincial Park and our route today will pass many of them.


Such as this small lake, you can hardly see the water it’s so still and reflective.

IMG_5562 We take a side trail to Yew Lake Lookout, curiously named as you don’t appear to be able to see Yew Lake situated at the bottom of the valley from here. You do however get good views to the ridge on the other side of the valley and across Howe Sound.


The Lions clearly seen from here.



Looking across Howe Sound from Yew Lake Lookout.


Returning to the main trail we immediately reach beautiful Cabin Lake.


Mojo takes a sample and has a paddle.


A short distance and little more uphill later we reach the top of Black Mountain.  At 1200m (3970ft) we get good views over Bowen Island towards the Sunshine Coast, the town of Gibsons seen here.


Another view of The Lions from the top of Black Mountain.


Because we were starting our walk early and our encounter with a bear the previous day I decided it was prudent to put Mojo’s bear bell on him for todays walk.  There is much evidence to suggest that bear bells do nothing to deter bears, but plenty of evidence to suggest that they make the owners of said bells feel safer !  So, Mojo adorned his bell, hence the occasional jingle in this panorama from the top of Black Mountain.

Once we had taken in the view from the top of Black Mountain we continued along the trail, down the south side to Owen Lake.


Plus many more smaller lakes and ponds followed by Cougar Lake.

IMG_5588 Another 20 or 30 minutes hiking and we reach our main destination for todays walk, Eagle Bluffs.


Terrific views to the West towards Bowen Island and the Sunshine Coast beyond.


Hazy into the sun images of downtown and Mt Baker.



Eagle Harbour, with Highway 1 in the foreground.


The Caulfield area of West Vancouver.  Here we can see Lighthouse Park which is the large forested tip of the peninsula and Caulfield Shopping Centre just to the right of the bright green sports field which is Rockridge Secondary.


Passage Island.


UBC, part of Spanish Banks beach and Pacific Spirit Regional Park.


The Bowen Island ferry departing Snug Cove.


Village of Horseshoe Bay.


The Boathouse Restaurant in Horseshoe Bay in the centre of the photo.


Sunshine Coast ferry enroute to Gibsons.


Views across Howe Sound.


Bowen Island ferry getting close to Horseshoe Bay.


View of West Vancouver, Eagle Lake in the foreground.


Vancouver Island ferry from Nanaimo approaching Horseshoe Bay.



Panorama from Eagle Bluffs.

For the whole time we had Eagle Bluffs completely to ourselves.


Eventually we had to start making our way back down.  We chose a different return route along the opposite side of Black Mountain using the Baden Powell Trail.


Lillies flowering in one of the lakes.  The slow start to summer is taking it’s toll as these should be done by now !


Our different route back takes us to the top of one of the chairlifts.


Then back down one of the ski runs, a great way to take in more views and catch a bit more sun on route.


A great walk in the alpine, close to home with excellent views all done in the morning keeping the afternoon free for work.  Perfect !

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