Do you ever get the urge to explore the great outdoors? Lucky for us, there's plenty of opportunities to do just that in Vancouver. One particular trail that we like is the Baden Powell Trail. It may not be an easy hike, but we love that it's near the city.
So if you're thinking about hiking the Baden Powell Trails, you should keep reading as we provide you with a comprehensive hiking guide.
What is the Baden Powell Trail?
Built by the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides of Canada, the Baden Powell Trail is a symbol of celebration for the 100-year anniversary of British Columbia's entry as a province in Canada in 1971.
The trail was named after Lord Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the modern Boy Scouts, and their young members did the majority of the trail's construction labor. Pretty awesome, right?
The Baden Powell Trail
The Baden Powell Trail is a 41.7-kilometer-long trail from the Burrard Inlet in Deep Cove to Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver. Now, don’t let the distance intimidate you; this trail is best tackled in sections, making it perfect for multi-day excursions.
It’s divided into four sections—Deep Cove to Lynn Valley; Lynn Valley to Grouse Mountain; Grouse Mountain to Cypress Mountain; and Cypress Mountain to Horseshoe Bay.
Be prepared for a challenge, as the trails have kilometers of forested slopes by the river, crossing bridges and streams. The terrain becomes more forgiving as you near Mount Seymour Road, but expect some hills between Quarry Rock and Deep Cove.
Despite that, the Baden Powell Trail is a gem that showcases Vancouver’s North Shore in all its natural glory. You’ll pass lush forests near Hollyburn Peak, the Grouse Grind, and scenic vistas of the Indian Arm from Quarry Rock.
It’s definitely one of the best hiking trails in Vancouver. Here are some of the other points of interest along the Baden Powell Trail:
- Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge in Lynn Canyon Park
- Mosquito Creek in Vancouver Harbor
- Seymour Canyon
- Cypress Provincial Park
- Cleveland Dam
- Eagle Bluff
Pacific Standard Time (PST) (UTC-8)
Best Time to Go
The best time to go to Baden Powell Trail is from June through November, as the weather is typically mild and the days are longer. This allows hikers to fully enjoy the stunning views and take their time exploring the trail.
How to Get There
- From downtown Vancouver: take the sea bus to Lonsdale Quay and board the #228 or #229 bus, which will both drop you off at the Lynn Valley Center.
- From East Vancouver, Burnaby, or Metro Town: take any bus to Phibbs Exchange and board bus #227 which will take you to Lynn Canyon Park’s main entrance.
- From West Vancouver: take BC-99 N and take exit 2 for Eagleridge Drive. Once at the roundabout, exit onto the ramp for BC-99 N and turn left after 700 m to reach the parking area.
By car: Drive towards Trans Canada Highway 1 until you reach exit 19. Then, continue towards Lynn Valley Road North East past the Mountain Highway intersection, and then drive to Lynn Valley Road. Lastly, make a right onto Peters Road.
Tips When Hiking the Baden Powell Trail
Take the Deep Cove to Lynn Canyon Park trail for a scenic hike
The Deep Cove to Lynn Canyon Park trail definitely takes you through some stunning sights, like Deep Cove and Indian Arm views, the Seymour River and Lynn Creek canyons, and finally, you’ll reach Quarry Rock for a triumphant summit.
As you head into the Mount Seymour region, you’ll walk through dense forests filled with Douglas fir and western cedar trees, and you may even spot some wildlife along the way.
Wear your most comfortable shoes
Trust us, the Baden Powell Trail can be tough on your feet, so it’s best to have sturdy footwear with tougher soles. Maybe even throw in some extra padding or cushioning for added comfort (or even blister pads).
On the trail, there are quite a few sections that aren’t that well-maintained, such as downhill slopes and areas with loose soil that can get slippery, so it’s best to proceed with caution and be mindful of your footing.
Hang a bear bell
The Baden Powell Trail is known for its wildlife, including bears. Remember, bears are more scared of you than you are of them, so it’s best to hang a bear bell on your backpack to alert bears of your presence and avoid surprising them.
Watch out for bikes
The Baden Powell Trail features a well-known two-kilometer singletrack biking route, so be sure to keep an eye out for cyclists, as they can occasionally come down swiftly, and certain segments of the trail are narrow.
Bring a GPS or compass
As with any hike, bringing a GPS or compass is essential for navigation and ensuring you stay on the right trail. The Baden Powell Trail can be quite long and has multiple intersections, so having a reliable way to navigate will help prevent getting lost.
Where to Stay Near the Baden Powell Trail
Crystal’s View Bed & Breakfast
Address: 420 Tempe Crescent, North Vancouver, BC V7N 1E6, Canada
Phone: +1 604-987-3952
An 8-minute drive away from the Baden Powell Trail is this charming bed and breakfast place that feels like staying in a modern cabin with views of the ocean and downtown Vancouver.
Rooms here are cozy, with comfortable furnishings and large windows that let in plenty of natural light. The European-style multi-course breakfast keeps guests out of their rooms, and coffee, tea, and ice is available upon request at any time.
Holiday Inn & Suites North Vancouver
Address: 700 Old Lillooet Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 2H5, Canada
Phone: +1 604-985-3111
Nestled in the foothills of the North Shore mountains is the Holiday Inn & Suites North Vancouver, where they really stay true to their full-service promise. with plenty of complimentary features for guests.
This includes free parking, a heated indoor pool with a hot tub and dry sauna, a fitness center, and onsite dining. Sure, the rooms are pretty basic, but you get what you pay for. Plus, it’s only 11 minutes away from the Baden Powell Trail.
Riverfront Bed and Breakfast
Address: 1327 Riverside Dr W, North Vancouver, BC V7H 1V6, Canada
Phone: +1 778-929-9565
With the Seymour River as your backyard neighbor, lodging here at the Riverfront Bed and Breakfast is such a soothing stay, as you’ll hear the flow of the gentle river throughout the day.
Expect to be out of your room most of the time here, as the spacious front garden and lounge chairs are quite tempting for relaxation and enjoying the picturesque view of the river.
Lonsdale Quay Hotel
Address: 123 Carrie Cates Ct 3rd Floor, North Vancouver, BC V7M 3K7, Canada
If you want to stay near the sea bus station, the Lonsdale Quay Hotel is just a few steps away. Sure, it’s half an hour away from the Baden Powell Trail, but it’s really accessible if you’re riding the sea bus to and from North Van.
There’s a market on the main floor with lots of food choices, and the water is literally at your doorstep. Beds are comfy, and bathrooms have modern amenities; you can’t really go wrong here.
Pinnacle Hotel at the Pier
Address: 138 Victory Ship Way, North Vancouver, BC V7L 0B1, Canada
Phone: +1 604-986-7437
This 4-star waterfront hotel truly embodies local charm (you can tell by the rates of their rooms). You’ll find rooms equipped with 42″ TVs, top-notch linens, and stunning harbor vistas.
Once you step inside, this hotel offers a variety of conveniences, including indoor pools, hot tubs, a restaurant and bar, a cozy lobby lounge, and easy access to the Shipyard district just steps away.
Where to Eat Near the Baden Powell Trail
Address: 1308 Ross Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 1V2, Canada
Phone: +1 604-988-0174
This homey breakfast joint will take you back in time to old diners when you step through its doors. Vintage vinyls such as Elvis, The Righteous Brothers, and Connie Francis adorn the walls; indoor seating is plentiful; and there’s an outdoor patio.
Our advice? Get one of the breakfast plates. Personally, we love the ‘Big Lebowski’, as it’s got everything we need for a filling meal: eggs, ham, bacon, and sausage.
Address: 1255 Lynn Valley Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 0A1, Canada
Phone: +1 604-971-5299
If you’re looking to meet locals and tourists in the area, it’s best to dine at Browns Socialhouse. The restaurant’s lively atmosphere is accentuated by rounded booths, an open concept layout, and vibrant LED decor that literally says ‘Socialize’.
You’ve got the classic comfort foods here, like burgers, fries, pizza, and pasta. But you should definitely chow down on yam fries as your side dish, as they complement the main dishes perfectly.
Address: 1232 Ross Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 2A2, Canada
Phone: +1 604-988-0082
If you’re looking for good sushi, we recommend you swing by this awesome sushi place along Ross Road. Sure, there’s no rice options, but it isn’t a huge deal as most of the menu items are very filling.
The chicken teriyaki is scrumptious, the tempura is crunchy, and the veggies are fresh. And of course, the star of the show is their sushi, which is just heavenly.
Big Bite Donair حلال
Address: 1252 Lynn Valley Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 2A3, Canada
Phone: +1 604-770-2070
Big Bite Donair’s butter chicken is enough to make you come back to this Mediterranean restaurant along Lyn Valley Road. Come for the butter chicken; stay for the wide variety of tasty homemade sauces.
Our pick? Get the tikka kebab. It’s not only packed with flavor but also perfectly cooked and tender. Pair your meal with a cold bottle of pop, and you’re good to go.
Waves Coffee House
Address: 3050 Mountain Hwy, North Vancouver, BC V7J 2P1, Canada
Phone: +1 604-990-8799
Waves Coffee House is a Canadian staple for coffee lovers. Seriously, the richness of the coffee here will blow you away. We’ve ordered iced and hot beverages here, and we enjoyed each tremendously with a breakfast sandwich or pastry.
Things to Do near the Baden Powell Trail
Explore the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge
Address: 3663 Park Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7J 3K2, Canada
Phone: +1 604-990-3755
6 minutes away from the Baden Powell Trail is Lynn Canyon Park, where you can cross and take photos at the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge. The lakeside scenery here is hard to beat, and it’s best viewed in the morning.
Some folks around these parts like to go for a swim and have a nice picnic by the water. It’s really relaxing, with the creek flowing right by you.
Relax at Rice Lake
Address: Rice Lake, North Vancouver, BC, Canada
Before driving towards Mountain Hwy., take a right onto Dempsey Rd., where you’ll spot this quiet lake on the edge of Lynn Headwaters Regional Park. Take a moment to walk around, or maybe have a picnic by the serene waters.
Take note that you can’t swim here; but you can go for a dip in the 30 Foot Pool along Lynn Creek, just not here at Rice Lake.
Have a Picnic at Princess Park
Address: North Vancouver, BC V7K 1G7, Canada
Phone: +1 604-873-7000
Doesn’t matter if you’re traveling with children or not; Princess Park is a great spot for out-of-town visitors, as there’s plenty of space for outdoor activities and, if you’re not all about physical exertion, there’s plenty of benches to sit and relax.
The best part about this park is that it’s an ideal place to walk your dogs. Even if you don’t have one, it’s a great place to befriend some furry companions.
Stop by the Mountain Market
Address: 3620 Mountain Hwy Suite B, North Vancouver, BC V7K 2H6, Canada
Phone: +1 604-980-2721
This hidden gem of an old-fashioned corner store has it all—groceries, flowers, potted plants, and trees. Take a walk inside their gorgeous garden section, and you’ll find a wide variety of colorful blooms and lush greenery.
Drop by the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
Address: 3735 Capilano Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7R 4J1, Canada
Phone: +1 604-985-7474
The Capilano Suspension Bridge Park is pretty much a North Vancouver icon, so if you’ve got some time, it’s definitely worth swinging by to check out that 137-meter (450-foot) long suspension bridge in all its glory.
Once you’re on the bridge, take a moment to soak in the stunning rainforest surroundings with its impressive canopies and an endless sea of mighty trees, including some ancient ones that have been around for 1,500 years.
Apps to Download for a Trip to the Baden Powell Trail
AllTrails: custom route planning app with fitness activity tracker and reviews from fellow hikers to help you plan your outdoor adventures.
Gaia GPS: paid hiking navigation app, road trip planner, and backcountry navigator
Relive.cc: a free tracking app that records a video of your route and waypoints, as well as showing the elevation profile and stats.
The Baden Powell Trail is definitely for you if you’re up for a challenge that’s a touch less difficult and a lot more intriguing than the Grouse Grind. If you’re athletic, go faster, but why not take it a little more slowly and savor the moment?
While you’re here, why not check out these related articles to give you an idea of where to explore next here at Vancity: