Vancouver walks – Grouse Mountain in the snow

Vancouver walks – Grouse Mountain in the snow

Grouse Mountain in the SnowI’ve already written a couple of posts about the famous Grouse Grind. The Grind is normally closed during the winter, but we decided to go the North Shore anyway to see Grouse Mountain in the snow. My sister, Emmy came to visit, so we were keen to show her lots of Vancouver’s prettiest sights, but she is not quite as keen a walker as Marc and I. We needed to find easy walks, with pretty views. Grouse Mountain in the snow seemed like an excellent option!

Getting to Grouse Mountain:

As we live south of False Creek, it can be quite an adventure to reach the Mountains of the North Shore! We decided to take the Sea bus to the North Shore, and then a second bus up to Grouse Mountain. This gave my sister some gorgeous views of the city on the way!

The Grouse Skyride

Even in the summer, if you don’t want to spend an hour and a half sweating your way up Grouse Mountain, there is a gondola that can rush you to the top in just a few minutes. Marc and I have never taken the skyride *up* the mountain before! It is certainly a much easier way to see some pretty views!

Grouse Mountain in the snow

We emerged into a snowcloud, but the sky soon cleared to give us these views of Grouse Mountain in the snow. There were quite a few skiiers and snowboarders zooming around, but we could walk over to some areas, even with normal hiking boots.

Beaver Tails

The first thing we did was teach my sister about Beaver tails. We shared one between the three of us as they have sooo much sugar. Beavertails are halfway between a doughnut and a pancake. We chose the lemon, sugar and cinnamon flavour.

My next plan was to hire some snowshoes and see how far we could walk with Emmy. But before I could suggest it, Emmy saw a snowplow that was giving people lifts, so we took a ride on that instead.

Light Walk

I’d seen a sign for a “light walk” and I assumed that meant it would be an easy walk that Emmy could do with us. So, we all followed the signs to take a peek at it. It was actually a walk that is normally all lit-up (rather than a light walk in the sense of a brief stroll! Oops!)

There were trees with fairy lights dangling from them in all directions. It must look gorgeous at night!

I thought it all looked pretty magical in the day time as well! Lots of people must have trampled through this walk, as the snow was completely packed into a hard walkway. We didn’t need snowshoes as we could walk easily with hiking boots.

I had sooo much fun! I even got Emmy involved in a jump shot!

It seems like Grouse Mountain is well set up for snow-lovers. The walk was easy to follow and had a few little surprises. A couple of times we came around corners to hear music. They’d hidden speakers behind the trees. There are also some cool sculptures if you watch out for them.

There was also a large sparkling reindeer!

Snowy Owl

Some Grouse Mountain staff were showing off a beautiful owl, right by the sparkly reindeer. We arrived just as they were leaving with her, so we didn’t find out her name. Isn’t she lovely though!? I think she is a barn owl, rather than a snowy owl…but she does look good with snow for a background!

It looked like there was a longer trail for people with snow shoes. I’ll have to go back! This time, we headed back through the lovely snow-covered trees.

We decide to leave Grouse Mountain, and head through the mist to the sunny day below.

Cleveland Park

Once we’d made it back down the mountain, we took a bus down the hill to Cleveland Park. This is one of the first places Marc and I explored on the North Shore, and I LOVE the views from the Cleveland Dam and the Capilano lake. I *think* Emmy liked it too… but what she liked best was all the doggies out for a walk! Emmy owns a dog-sitting business in France, so she is happiest once she meets barking, four legged friends.

We got really lucky with our timing and the clouds lifted just enough to show us a brilliant view of the Lions. Emmy had a good chat with the owner of a poodle while I ran off to take this photo!

Capilano Suspension bridge

We had one more stop off on the way home. A few months ago, Emmy’s partner, Vincent, had shown me a photo of the Capilano Suspension bridge, and suggested it might be a good challenge to get her to walk over it. Emmy seemed up for it, despite her slight fear of heights. The bridge is 70m above the river and 137m across.

Emmy was actually completely fine, even on the highest parts of the bridge. I saw her making friends with dog owners and cuddling puppies, rather than worrying about heights!

We stopped off for some hot chocolates and Emmy had a rest while Marc and I zoomed around all the tree-top walks that I really, really love! I have a much longer post about the gorgeous walks around the Capilano Suspension bridge, so peek here if you’d like to see more about it!

It looked like the walkways must all be lit up in the evening here as well. But we left pretty close to closing time, and none of them were switched on, so it might be a Christmas activity!

So, that was our first day walking with Emmy. We didn’t actually walk very far at all, but we did get to show her a lot of gorgeous North Shore sights!


33 thoughts on “Vancouver walks – Grouse Mountain in the snow

    1. Thanks George! This was a nice easy one, but it’s still quite good for views eh!? 🙂

      I’m guessing you’re all snowed in too with the beast from the east!?

  1. It was a good day out so thank you very much for that little sis. You’ve got some lovely photos on here. My feet did hurt after all that, but as they hurt after a very short walk I would still go ahead and recommend that these walks are good for almost everyone. I would have loved to have seen more of the susspention bridge park but as you say it was nearly closing time but the time we got there. To do it again there I’d probably do it the other way around and end with hot chocolate up the mountain to see the sparkly lights in the evening afterwards. Xxx

    1. Oooh true! If I had planned it better we totally could have done this the other way around. Good thinking Em!

    1. Thanks Ruth!

      It’s amazing to have such a good views so close to the city. We are really spoiled here!!

  2. Oh, I have only been to Grouse Grind in the summer. I wondered what it would be like during the winter time! I love how the carved statues look with the snow. It definitely looks like worth the trip, Josy!

    1. Oooh you’d love it! There are longer snowshoe trails (one is even called the snow shoe grind!) I am sure it’d be right up your street. 🙂

    1. Thanks Carol! I guess you must not see any snow where you live at the moment! You can live vicariously through my winter photos, and I can see the sun on your exploring blog posts!!

    1. I love the Lions too. I don’t know why, but I am really drawn to them. I really hope we can walk up to them next summer!

      Did you ever do that walk when you lived this side of the mountains?

    1. Haha! If you come and visit Vancouver I can get you out for a hike too! I promise it’s really fun. 🙂

  3. That looks like an elephant ear (the beaver’s tail). 2 questions: 1. why do we name foods after animal limbs and 2. have you ever had an elephant ear? They are delicious!

    1. Oooh now I want to try an elephant ear too!! I’ve had the cookies called elephant ears. You don’t mean those do you?

      To be honest when I first heard that canadians eat beaver tails, I thought it must be like frog legs in France. I couldn’t imagine how they’d cook it to avoid some kind of hard, chewy mess. I was so happy to hear it was a dessert!

    1. Oh no I missed this comment earlier but YES! Come and eat a beaver tail. They are really good.
      You can get the one covered in maple syrup if you want to be more canadian!

  4. I’m just going to say it: If I ever come to Vancouver again (and I hope I do) I am looking you up to take me for a walk!!
    Also, I just heard that walking is the ONE physical activity proven to reduce cognitive decline. Now, I need to look up that particular reference, but I immediately thought of you.

    1. Yay!! I would love to go walking with you. Please do give e a shout if you come North!!

      My mum and dad walk a lot as well, so that makes me happy to hear they’ll be keeping their brains healthy.

    1. Yay!! Come to Vancouver Lisa! It’s really easy to get to Grouse. I guess that is why it gets so busy, but it it worth it foe the prettiness.

  5. What an amazing post again, Josy! First of all, the views from the sky ride were beautiful. AND, the beaver tails looked fantastic!!! Your photo of the still lake with the mountains behind is was awesome – just awesome. Your sister is lucky to have such a great tour guide. 🙂

    1. I looooove that view of the Capilano lake. It is just so relaxing and pretty. I’m really glad you like it all too.

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