Mount Fromme – Hikes Near Vancouver

Mount Fromme – Hikes Near Vancouver

Mount Fromme - A fab mountain on Vancouver's North Shore - better than the Grouse GrindMount Fromme is one of those mountains that although it’s obvious on the Vancouver skyline, it seems to get overlooked in favour of it’s famous neighbours like Grouse Mountain. I asked my Canadian colleagues, and most of them have never heard of it. Still, not being famous, doesn’t mean you should ignore this peak; The lack of popularity can be an advantage, as it means you might have a relaxing walk without too much of a crowd.

Just be aware, if you stop at the top, there isn’t much of a viewpoint BUT if you keep walking for a few extra minutes *after* the peak, the trees open out to a wonderful vista of Mount Burwell with Mount Garibaldi in the distance.

I actually attempted this hike twice last June, and then completely forgot to write about it, so this is a very late trail report!

Mount Fromme trail map

Mount Fromme – the basics

Distance: 10km 
Elevation Gain:
High Point: 
Time: 4-5 hours
What to bring:
Water, snacks and your camera!
The 10 essentials.
Facilities: There are bike trails at the start of the walk, but no loos or facilities. 
Dogs: Yes!
How hard is it?
Intermediate – It’s a good workout, but not technical.

Mount Fromme – Getting started

You can take a bus, (Number 230 from Lonsdale Quay, get off at St George’s Avenue and hike up to the end of the avenue.) Or drive to the top of St. Georges Avenue to find parking on the street. Head towards the forest and you’ll soon reach a powerline trail that is often covered in foxgloves.

I know have a very uncool sense of humour (I love dad jokes!) but the second part of this sign made me smile. “Attention Dogs: Grr, bark, woof.”

St. Georges Trail

Turn left off the Powerline trail and follow a wide path to the next junction where you start on the St Georges trail.  As soon as you reach this point, the path is narrow, covered in roots and really pleasant.

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You basically keep following the St Georges trail right up until you reach the Grouse Mountain Highway. So enjoy the forest and keep climbing steadily up. It’s far wilder than the Grouse Grind, and doesn’t have the difficult baby-head-sized boulders that you have to contend with on Lynn Peak.

I did this walk on my own, so took it slowly and spent plenty of time looking for mushrooms and flowers. Did you know if you lick the dew-like droplets, they are supposed to be really tasty? I still didn’t get the courage to try it, but I sort of want to! I learned that during our mushroom foraging tour nearby in the Lynn Valley.

Woody Woodpecker

One thing I really enjoyed about hiking solo was not scaring off all the birds! In June, there were quite a few woodpeckers being very active and making a racket as they pecked the trees. I think the first little fella is a Downy Woodpecker (I saw him during this hike.)

The other one is a Pileated Woodpecker. I did see one on Mount Fromme, but I was too slow to get a photo. This photo is from the previous week in Stanley Park.

The Faces of Mount Fromme

The other thing I loved about this path was all the smiley tree faces. I spotted at least 3 of the log faces as well as this giant trunk with eyes.

Peer Gynt trail

Once you’ve found the Grouse Mountain Highway (which for the record is no highway! It’s a rocky track wide enough for a car.) you turn off onto the Peer Gynt trail for move lovely trees and even a giant patch of skunk cabbages. This must be pretty in spring when they flower.

The path is pretty obvious. If you are unsure, just keep a lookout for orange markers on the trees.

At one point there you can see plenty of light to your left. If you go to investigate, you can look down on a gravel pit. This is at 830m elevation, so it means you only have 2km (ish) and 350m more elevation to ascend.

Mount Fromme Summit

I’m not going to lie, the summit of Mount Fromme is a bit of a let-down in terms of views. The highest point has trees in all directions and there are no views down to Vancouver.

Mount Fromme Viewpoint

However, if you keep going for a few extra minutes beyond the peak, there is a viewpoint with really fantastic views of the North Shore Mountains. I had met a hiker on their way down who told me there were no views at all, and I have never heard people describe Mount Fromme as a ‘must-do’ hike, so I have to admit I was not expecting much from this view.

How could anyone be unimpressed with this view!? I thought it was perfect! I love the way the trees frame Mount Burwell, Coliseum Mountain and the Needles (the three spiky mountains to the right). It might even be the best viewpoint for the needles I’ve seen so far!

I could easily see as far as the Mountains of Garibaldi Provincial Park, even the Black Tusk over in Whistler!

This is a closer view of Mount Burwell. I was really keen to explore it, but needed to wait for more snow to melt. You can read about our day on Mount Burwell here. It was the most challenging (and exciting) day of 2019 for me.

Returning from Mount Fromme

There are a few ways to return from Mount Fromme. There is an overgrown path that will take you on a loop via Thunderbird Ridge to Dam Mountain and Grouse Mountain. Or you could go down the Mount Fromme Trail and Grouse Mountain Highway. I decided to keep it simple, and returned the way I came, enjoying all the wild flowers along the route.

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What do you think of Mount Fromme? I had more fun than I expected to. There were only a couple of other people on the trail, so I actually loved how quiet and relaxing it was. I even enjoyed it more than it’s super-famous sister, Grouse Mountain. Would you like the idea of climbing a quiet, less developed version of the Grind? If so, you might like this too.

Click on the photos below to pin them.

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44 thoughts on “Mount Fromme – Hikes Near Vancouver

  1. I haven’t done this hike in a long time. It is beautiful. By the way, I’ve tried unsuccessfully several times opening your newest post on hiking North Shore. Maybe it’s only a problem on my end but thought I’d mention.

    1. Oooh no, it’s my fault! I half wrote a post and then pressed publish instead of save!

      It should be ready in a few days, then it’ll show up again. I’m really sorry!!

  2. I also had no idea about this place. Great picture of the woodpecker! I always fail at animal pictures. Maybe because I’m not stealthy enough, especially by halfway through a hike. I really need to get out more this summer in Vancouver and try some of these places, it looks way better than Grouse!

    1. Lol I know what you mean! We have seen them quite a few times. Normally they stay and pose while I get out my larger lens…then as soon as it is in my hands, the little buggers fly off! I only managed to get that one because the big lens was already in my hands when I saw him!

      You are welcome to join me for hikes! If you can, pop out to see waterfalls at the moment- they are swelled by the rains and looking amaaaazong!

  3. I haven’t been to Vancouver in almost 2 decades but would love to go back to explore sometime!! Those photos are beautiful–I love all the green! :]!

    1. Thanks Farrah! If you did not visit for two decades, I think the city will surprise you too! There are soooo many new buildings. Hopefully the green areas will stay that nice for many, many more decades.

    1. It’s easiest in the summer once all the snow has melted. I am pretty sure it would be possible early in the spring (if you bring spikes) and late into the autumn before too much snow falls. It’s not too high, so only the top section would be snowy even in winter…

      1. Wow this hike is so beautiful I love it when the trail of a hike is also interesting and beautiful as it makes it so much more enjoyable. The views at the top look absolutely incredible. I would love to do this hike!

  4. I’ve never heard of Mount Fromme! The view at the end actually looks really nice, I wouldn’t complain about it. It sounds like a really peaceful hike. I’m not sure I would ever be brave enough to lick the dewdrops off of mushrooms, but now I am curious about it.

    1. Me too! Next time I see one (if it’s above dog-pee height) I might poke it with my finger and lick that – it seems less scary somehow…

  5. This looks like a great hike! Seems like it was really peaceful there in the woods, love the photos of the foxgloves and the woodpecker!

  6. What a lovely walk in the woods (literally!) Being unpopular sometimes is exactly WHY you should do a hike – no crowds!! You were so lucky to get such a good shot of the pileated woodpecker – every time I see one, they’re usually busy flying away!

    1. It’s not too fast a pace. When a trail is flat we normally walk 10km in around 2-2.5 hours. I just slow down quite a lot once we’re on a slope!

  7. I love to hike and Canada is such a beautiful place to explore. Will definitely have to check this hike out during my next trip!

  8. Thanks for sharing, I would definitely like to visit a less busy place than the Grouse Grind! I also like how you list whether the hike is dog friendly as there seems to be a shift in dog friendly trails recently.

  9. Josy I love all your hikes, though quite a few of them would be out of my fitness range! This one looks especially beautiful – the flowers, the lack of crowds and the spectacular views (those 3 spiky mountains look incredible!) all look amazing!
    The sign ‘Attention Dogs: Grr, bark, woof’ made me laugh – I love jokes like these!

    1. No way Smita! I’ve seen your stunning photos from the Alps, you could totally manage this one! 😉

      p.s. Yay, I am so glad I am not the only one that loved the doggy sign!

  10. Wow, you made it yourself! I always admire your walk and what a quiet place you have during your walk. How is the weather around this time? Is it summer or winter?

    1. Right now it is winter (it just started snowing today in the city!) so Mount Fromme is covered in snow/ice. I did this hike back in June when it was much warmer.

  11. I’ve never heard of Mount Fromme before reading your post. But this destination looks so peaceful and serene. I would love to explore this region sometime in future.

  12. This looks like such a cool hike! I lived in Seattle for almost a decade and of course made it up to Vancouver a couple of times, but never long enough to go on any hikes. I always regret that I didn’t do more local exploring when I lived there! Anyways, you’re totally right about bringing a camera. Those shots of all the trees are gorgeous. That’s also really cool that you got to see (and hear) some woodpeckers!

  13. Wow this hike is so beautiful I love it when the trail of a hike is also interesting and beautiful as it makes it so much more enjoyable. The views at the top look absolutely incredible. I would love to do this hike!

  14. I’ve only hiked it once but likewise really enjoyed it. I think having low expectations helps on these kinds of trips and you can really just enjoy the journey rather than push for the usual summit reward. I also really like the view from there, and if you go to the north summit you get a nice view of the ski runs on Grouse. And it’s so much quieter than the neighbouring peaks! Good time of year to visit with the queen’s cup in bloom too 🙂

    Love the new map feature!

    1. You might be right. I was expecting it to be a bit rubbish because I have never heard other hikers sing it’s praises.

      I meant to ask you, on the map, I saw a waterfall between Mt Fromme and Grouse. Have you ever visited it? I might try that next time.

      1. Yeah I think it’s a North Shore aficionado’s destination 🙂 One of my work friends really likes it.

        I don’t know that waterfall, but there is a hike in Dawn Hanna’s book called Mosquito Creek Cascades, which we attempted once but weren’t sure if we found them! I’d be interested in finding it though and it looks like you could make a loop with Mt Fromme too.

        1. Yes it looks like you could do it in a mini loop. Hmmm…I might try once the snow starts to melt and it’ll be super splashy!

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