Sunday, 7 June 2015

The Sea to Sky Gondola offers many reasons to visit

by Keith and Heather Nicol      
     On June 5 we headed to one of our favourite new visitor attractions in the Vancouver area- the Sea
The Sea to Sky Gondola whisks you to the top in 10 minutes
to Sky Gondola which is located near Squamish, just north of Vancouver. Our first visit was just over a year ago when they first opened the Sea to Sky Gondola and we were immediately impressed amazing views from the large viewing platform at 885 meters. The Sea to Sky Gondola is easily accessed from Highway 99 and is just past the turnoff to Shannon Falls. In just 10 minutes you are whisked from the base station to the Summit Lodge which has a restaurant, washrooms, gift shop as well as an immense viewing deck. Several short trails leading for the lodge provide other views of Squamish, Howe Sound as well as the surrounding mountains and valleys.
Heather and Kristie look at one of the many interpretative panels
One of the many viewing platforms with Howe Sound in the distance
  On our most recent visit we had our daughter Kristie in tow and we did the short 400 meters Spirit trail which includes a suspension bridge as well as exploring the 1.6 km Panorama trail. Both of these trails are suited to a wide range of hikers since the grades are slight and the crushed stone makes for easy walking. The Panorama trail has several lookouts which make this trail particularly appealing. We also decided to check out the newish Wonderland Lake trail which is also 1.6 km. This trail is narrow and more rugged but gives good views of Sky Pilot Mountain as well as passes by Wonderland Lake. At Wonderland Lake we saw a small garter snake skipping across the water from lily pad to lily pad! There are also other trails that lead further up and down the mountain but for many people these 3 trails will be a great introduction to this area. We think the Sea to Sky Gondola is a great destination since appeals to such a broad range of people from those that want to have a coffee and relax on the deck to those that want to rock climb at Wrinkle rock. And we were told that they have already matched last season’s busiest day and the main tourism season hasn’t even started yet. For more information check out:

 Kristie hiking on the Wonderland Lake trail with Sky Pilot in the distance


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