For a less crowded but beautiful destination try hiking to Petgill Lake. This jewel located in the Squamish area of British Columbia can be hiked year round and offers amazing views.
Hiking to Petgill Lake is about a 12 kilometer round trip hike and depending on your group’s abilities will take approximately 6 hours. This also depends on how much time you spend enjoying the scenery of course. The highest point of this hike reaches around 700-750 meters.
Petgill Lake can be hiked all year long which gives it real diversity. You may want to consider taking along your snow shoes in winter as the snow can get quite deep.
Petgill Lake is a small lake and great for stopping for lunch and swimming in during the hot summer days.
Start this hike by parking your vehicle in the parking lot at the Murrin Provincial Park which is approximately 2 kilometers north of Brittania Beach.
From this point you begin your hike with a rather scraggly start up a steep and densely brushy trail. When you reach the fork in the path keep to your left and soon after the trail enters a gorgeous forest of Douglas fir trees, Western Hemlocks and Sitka spruce trees. Continue along the trail upwards and you will soon take in the views of Howe Sound.
Once you continue on past this vantage point you will also come across some very impressive views of the Chief and the Squamish River. Make sure to have your camera with you for these impressive photo opportunities.
Past this point you will eventually come to Petgill Lake and there are many spots around the lake that you can stop to have lunch although many hikers agree that the best spot to stop is right near where the trail opens up to the lake itself.
This is a great place to stop and have lunch, take a swim and enjoy your natural surroundings for a while.
Once you are ready to pack up and head back, simply re-trace your steps to go back to the parking lot from where you started.
Hiking to Petgill Lake may not be as visually impressive as the views provided from a hike to Garibaldi but is still a very impressive hike and less crowded. With a great swimming spot during the summer months and an easy drive from Vancouver this hike makes a perfect day hike.