Cool waters trickle down at Lynn Canyon Park's water spots — Photo courtesy of Natasha John
A majestic and lush rainforest set in the heart of North Vancouver is calling. The Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge is loaded with hiking trails, natural swimming pools, an ecology center and a suspension bridge. The best part of all? Everything is free.
Open to the public since 1912, Lynn Canyon Park has become a local favorite. This easy-to-find park is ideal during the summer months but can also be explored and enjoyed throughout spring and fall. The natural beauty here is simply stunning.
There are several different trails you can do while exploring, and they vary in difficulty; some are definitely more challenging than others, so plan your route accordingly. There are a few maps scattered throughout the park so that you can get your bearings if need be.
The most popular route is to head straight across the suspension bridge and down to the 30-foot swimming pool. As you step onto the suspension bridge, you can feel it jiggle as you make your way across. If heights don't bother you, make sure to stop in the middle and catch a glimpse (or photo) of the falls. This is the best spot to soak in the view.
When you've made it to the other side, follow the signs for the 30-foot swimming pool. This very chilly water is a delicious way to cool down on a hot summer's day. The water is crystal clear and beautiful shades of greens and blues. Just be careful on the rocks, as they can be a little bit slippery. Around the swimming pool are plenty of places to enjoy a picnic before or after your hike.
Some of the trails have quite a few stairs, so it's advisable that you wear the proper footwear and make sure you've got plenty of water (especially on hot days). Thankfully, the trails also offer plenty of seating scattered throughout; this is a welcome break after a large flight of stairs.
Beautiful paths are a welcome surprise — Photo courtesy of Natasha John
Unlike many other trails, Lynn Canyon provides bathroom facilities and a cafe where you can grab a quick bite to eat and something cold to drink.
If you're after a really easy hike (more like a leisurely stroll amongst nature), Rice Lake is close by and is accessible by Lynn Canyon Park and Lynn Headwaters. There's plenty of parking there, too. It's about a 45-minute leisurely walk around a tranquil lake, and there are a number of quiet places to stop and enjoy the scenery.
Visit Lynn Canyon Park and Suspension Bridge's website for plenty of information on the park's trails.