Hicks Lake is a pleasant, easy hike in Sasquatch Provincial Park. If you are staying in one of the nearby Campgrounds, then this is a good place to stretch your legs or go for a swim. The trail is easy to follow, doesn’t have much elevation gain and has oodles of tasty berries if you visit in the summertime. The only downside to this mini adventure is the mosquitoes.
Hicks Lake trail map
Hicks Lake – The basics
Distance: 6.6 km (Strava recording said 8km, including Beaver Lake as well)
Elevation Gain: 80m
Time: 1.5 hours
What to bring: The 10 Essentials plus bear spray
Facilities: Picnic benches and a pit toilet in the day use area (plus more at the campground.)
Dogs: Great for dogs on a lead (but pets are not allowed in picnic areas or on the beaches.)
How hard is it? Super easy
Hicks Lake – Getting started
Hicks Lake is located by one of the three campgrounds in Sasquatch Provincial Park, around 2 hours drive from Vancouver. From the Harrison Hot Springs Resort, drive northeast along Rockwell Drive for 7km until you reach the entrance to the park. From there, follow the gravel road and take the first left (there is a sign to Hicks Lake.) Once you get to the lake, turn left for the day use area.
There is a picnic area near the beach and boat launch. It was quiet when we visited, but it seemed like a pleasant spot to eat.
The first part of the trail meanders along the lake shore. We often left the main trail to walk along the beaches and look over to the surrounding misty mountains. The trail skirts the edge of the Hick Lake Campground, then moves into the forest with lots of small bridges to help hikers cross the gushing streams that fill the lake.
Wildlife at Hicks Lake
We didn’t see much wildlife around the lake. But beavers and bears live in the area (and we heard a cougar from our tent camping over at Deer Lake!) I have heard it is good to visit in September when hundreds and hundreds of teeny frogs take over the area.
Unfortunately there is an abundance of teeny wildlife in the form of hungry mosquitoes! I tested out an anti mosquito shirt on this hike. It worked really well for my upper body, but didn’t save my face and neck! If you do this hike early in the summer, bring bug spray, and then be sure to rinse it all off if you plan to swim, so you don’t poison the lake.
How easy is the trail?
Most of the loop around Hicks Lake is easy, with trails that are in good nick. However there are a couple of places (near stream crossings) where the path may be washed away or very muddy. The trail does climb up above the lake, so it is not completely flat, but it never gets tough.
I liked the forestry sections of the walk. The greenery is lush and the trail gets quite rugged.
The southern side of Hicks Lake is amaaazing for picking berries in early summer. We found oodles of salmonberries (left) and thimbleberries (right) right by the trail. This means you need to make a lot of noise as you hike, as bears could well be in the area for the berries.
Once you make it to the opposite side of the lake, you can turn around and walk back the way you came OR complete the loop along a gravel track. The gravel track is less picturesque, but it is much faster.
I am sure Hicks Lake (and Beaver Lake, below right) are beautiful when the sun is shining, but they were also a pleasure to visit on a misty, moody day.
This is walk is great if you are in the area, staying in Sasquatch Provincial Park or near Harrison Hot Springs. I am not sure I would recommend Hicks Lake if you have to come from far away; There are so many fabulous lakes nearby. This might seem boring if you are used to epic hikes to glacier-fed alpine lakes the colour of emeralds. But it is a lovely walk if you fancy escaping the crowds and relaxing in a calm corner of southwestern British Columbia.