Oooh! This is a walk that is short and sweet! You can easily manage this hike after work, so if you like the idea of exploring Vancouver’s pretty views, but you don’t think you could manage a loooong hike, try this one up Black Mountain! I hadn’t actually considered this walk because you need a car to reach it. However someone lovely from the awesome Hiking group Wanderung had planned a post-work hike there, so I signed up! Lots of other people loved the idea of an after-work hike, so there were around 5 cars full of walkers!
Our group met up in a car park (we were all perfectly on time)! We zoomed, well…sort of zoomed, traffic was a little slow through central Vancouver! Anyway, after sort-of-zooming, we crossed the Lion’s Bridge and headed to West Vancouver. The driver does most of the hard work for Black Mountain’s peak! The cypress bowl road leads all the way up to the trail-head at the Black Mountain Lodge.
There are so many flowers up in the mountains. Even in the car park there were these gorgeous purple flowers.
There was another car full of Wanderung folks waiting there. They went on ahead, and we joined a second car that arrived just after us. So we started the walk as a group of eight. The path is easy to follow, steep, but not crazily steep like the Grouse Grind or the Chief! We wandered up at a good pace. I was a little out of breath, but it wasn’t too hard.
It isn’t a long hike, so very soon we could look down at the skiing slopes of Cypress Mountain. Black Mountain has pretty good views considering how quickly you can get there!
One of the best things about this walk is all the wild blueberries! There were so many bushes with different types of blueberries! Some were fat, shiny and sweet, some were smaller and tart, but still really tasty. I kept finding lots of flowers as well.
The next part of the walk winds around small ponds and little groves with cotton-like grasses. It was all incredibly pretty in the evening sun.
We met up with all the hikers from the other various groups at Cabin lake. This is right near the top of Black Mountain and surrounded by trees. It is a PERFECT place for an evening dip. The water was pretty fresh when you first step into it..but it wasn’t too cold. I thought it was pleasant once I’d made it underwater. It was not even close to as chilly as my swim near Alouette lake after climbing Evan’s Peak.
The only bad thing was the bugs. There were sooo many black flies. The other hikers said they were not actually biting. BUT I might just be delicious. I ended up with several HUGE itchy bites that took over a week to fade. Little bitey-bastards.
We used a section of the path as a changing room… and re-dressed in our hiking gear before continuing up the mountain for another 15 minutes to the summit. The light in my photos is quite strange and shiny, but it was pretty to see it all.
I think we might have made it to the top of Black Mountain just in time for golden hour. Everything was bathed in a pretty golden light. There is no better way to spend time after work on a summer evening! We were treated to blue skies, amazing views and friendly walkers.
This is me happy to be at the top, looking down at the pretty views of the sea as well as so many islands including Bowen Island.
It was hard to take photos out to sea because it was right into the sun. You’ll just have to trust me that it was gorgeous. Having aid that, the light was good for taking glowing photos of our Wanderung group. The next photo is most of us at the top (a few people stayed down below at the lake…)
Here are a few more views of the sun-soaked world… I’m not sure why it is called Balck Mountain. Maybe it should be Golden-Green Mountain!?
Then, after stopping back at the lake for some more chatting, shortbread and blueberries, we started to walk slowly black down towards the car park.
I don’t think I’ve mentioned it on my blog; But from central Vancouver, whenever I see the silhouette of the Lions, I think it looks like a giant Totoro sneaking up behind the skyscrapers. What do you think? Can you see it?
The BP that is shown on this tree marks the Baden-Powell Trail, a 45km trail through North Vancouver. I think I’d quite like to come back and walk further along this trail with Marc.
For now though, we just hiked back to the cars, and then drove back to Vancouver. Half way down the mountain (on the road) there were some beautiful views back to Vancouver. It looked like sparkly sprinkles that reflect the stars in the sky.
As we walked back, one of the lovey Wanderung ladies told me about her experiences with the group and tried to recruit me to organise my own walks. I’ve had so much fun so far, I think I’d like to organise some at some point. Watch this space for more!