Garibaldi Provincial Park
Mount Garibaldi, within Garibaldi Provincial Park, soars to 8,786 feet (2,678 meters) and serves as the park’s centerpiece. The network of trails here includes a 7.5-mile (12-kilometer) hike to Elfin Lakes, just north of Squamish, at the park’s southern boundary. Whether you enjoy this trail on an overnight trip or a day hike; you’ll be rewarded with magnificent views of the peaks.
Closer to Whistler, the Cheakamus Lake and Singing Pass areas are home to hikes that explore the rugged coastal mountain landscapes. Ambitious hikers who want to put in a long day, rather than an overnight, can ride Whistler’s Gondola and Peak Chair to the summit of Whistler Mountain and access the Singing Pass trail via an alpine route before descending along Fitzsimmons Creek to Whistler Village. Less active visitors can enjoy a scenic flight tour that offers a bird’s-eye view of this impressive landscape.
Things to Know Before You Go
Though seemingly close to civilization, Garibaldi Provincial Park is a wilderness area with limited cellphone coverage. Be prepared with maps and navigation.
Garibaldi is also home to grizzly bears, so educate yourself in advance about the proper way to manage an encounter.
The weather can change rapidly, even in summer, so bring warm, waterproof clothing.
How to Get There
Garibaldi Park is located 44 miles (70 kilometers) north of Vancouver. It’s on the east side of the Sea to Sky Highway, between Whistler and Squamish. There are five main used access points (listed from south to north): Diamond Head, Black Tusk, Cheakamus Lake, Singing Pass, and Wedgemont Lake.
When to Get There
Visitors can travel to Garibaldi Provincial any time of year, though it snows and rains prodigiously in spring, fall, and winter. Summer is the most popular time to visit, and the park can be crowded during July and August. If you visit in summer, try hiking during the week, when you’ll encounter fewer fellow travelers.
Bears in Garibaldi Provincial Park
The mountains in this region are home to black and grizzly bears, both of which can pose dangers to humans. Black bears are more common, and they tend to run from humans. However, they can become aggressive if you surprise them or if you get too close to a cub. If you encounter a black bear, talk calmly and slowly and back away. Never feed a bear, and make sure all food is carefully secured.