Smugglers Cove Trail was the final short walk we did on our mini holiday in the Sunshine Coast. This is a super speedy walk that will take less than a couple of hours. It is really varied, beautiful and full of mushrooms. This walk isn’t one of the ones listed in the 105 hikes book; I found it on the Vancouver Trails website (which is another great website to find hikes near Vancouver).
The trail is really varied with the bog, the pretty forest as well as the coastal sections. If you are lucky you’ll get to see porpoises and bald eagles as well. We saw both!
Smugglers Cove Trail – the basics
Distance: 4 km (there and back)
Elevation gain: Hardly any at all
Time: 1.5 hours (or less)
There is a ca park at the start with a toilet and a map board.
Great for doggos but they need to stay on a lead.
How hard is it?
Easy – Bring your granny and toddlers. There were loads of young families exploring the trail while we were there.
Smugglers Cove Trail Map
Smugglers Cove Trail – the bog
After the first few minutes through the forest, the path arrives at a boggy area. While we were there the bog was very flooded, so it was more like a giant mirror, reflecting the surrounded forest.
You can see the lines on the trees where the water level has receded a little. It is a VERY wet boggy area.
The bogs are more like lakes at the moment. There must be some very enthusiastic beavers to flood this much of the forest.
Rainbows in the mud
The light was so low, that the sun lit up a layer of oil on the top of the bog, showing off multiple rainbows. I thought this might some kind of natural phenomenon, but apparently it is actually from all the boats that visit the cove. Now I know it is pollution, I feel bad for all the ducks swimming around on that layer of oil.
The forest was looking really beautiful with the sun shining through the trees. This was another walk that was full of mushrooms, even in the sunshine.
The path winds through the trees along next to the bog, and then every so often you are treated to pretty views out to the flooded trees, bog and reeds.
Near the end of the boardwalk, the water reflected the surrounding colours of the forest. I thought it looked a little monet-like. Isn’t it pretty?
We’ve had quite a few amazing mushroom walks since we attended the mushroom foraging tour near Vancouver. This was no exception. However, as I’ve already posted loads of mushroom piccies recently, I’ll just leave a few photos of the interesting fungi we found on this mini walk.
Rocky Beach view
If you take a left turn halfway along the trail, the path will lead you to a pretty rocky beach. There are lovely views of Grant Island. We saw some kind of spashy aquatic animals from afar…possibly porpoises. This is such a nice spot to sit and relax. Fewer people bother with this side trail, so you’re likely to have it to yourself.
We made it to Smugglers Cove! The waters are a lovely shade of greeny blue, and they are surrounded by moss and lichen-covered rocks. It is easy to imagine smugglers heading off from here to smuggle booze into America!
It’s a lovely spot!
There is even a pretty hut in the center of the cove. I wonder if it is still full of smuggleable goods?
Once you’ve had a look, you can walk around the headland in a loop, looking out to the surrounding islands and the Strait of Georgia.
Great for bird watching
We sat on the rocks for a while watching eagles and seagulls flyover us. I didn’t get many good photos, but it was a peaceful place to sit and watch the world go by.
We had to leave and rush back to take a ferry back to Vancouver. So, here is one last photo of the sun set along the sunshine coast.
I am a little bit in love with all the sunsets we saw along this beautiful coastline.
We really loved our hikes along the sunshine coast. None of them was particularly strenuous, but they were all pretty and great fun. If you’d like to see more, we explored: