Wow, I am really slacking the posts for hikes/trails/walks etc. This hike is HIGHLY recommended for the summertime. Super fun but you have to get there early.
Recommend being there at 7:45AM as it opens at 8AM. The line already forms before it “officially” opens. There are limited kayaks, so you have to hurry!! If you have your own then you’re good. The next best time to come is probably late afternoon like 2-3PM when people are heading back from there.
- Kayak for an hour or less (if you’re synchronized with your squad)
- Hike for an hour or so
- Hang out/swim play/lunch etc
- Hike back for an hour
- Kayak back for an hour
You’re looking at spending roughly 5 hours there!
- Water Shoes or flip flops for the kayak part
- Shoes for the hike
- Bathing Suit
- Waterproof gadgets for recording awesome footage!
***** 5/5 trail hands down.
Again, we just googled what restaurants were on the way to the ferry from Parksville and this was one of the best options that we all agreed on…
Variety – 9/10 – There were a lot of different choices to choose from. Your typical Greek options plus pasta (which is usually not on the menu for legit Greek Restaurants according to my former Greek boss). But it was nice to have that variety.
Service – 7/10 – It was very busy so the service was a little slow. Perhaps we were overlooked because we just got back from the caves/hiking and were on the way to the ferry so there was no pampering up, thus we looked scrubby and we were the youngest group there. They did, however, offer us a free dessert which was really nice of them considering they didn’t do anything wrong… (and we did check the other tables who had left or were about to leave, they did not get free dessert like we did).
Taste – 9/10 – Everything was very delicious. Taste just like how a Greek restaurant should. The meat was tender and soft.
Atmosphere – 5/10 – it was pretty cool that they turned the house into a restaurant but it was not cool that the place (or the area of our table) smelled like urine. Occasionally we would get a whiff of urine – maybe the walls were a little stinky… but something definitely reeked.. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Reasonably Priced – 7/10 – Some things were very overpriced but some was very worth the money. What I assumed I was getting, was definitely not it, and WOW the portion was HUGE!!!!!!!!!!!! I did not dent that plate at all (lamb rack).
Overall, I would recommend just for the one time experience.
Address: 347 Wesley St, Nanaimo, BC V9R 3A7
Time: The lookout was 1 minute away from the parking lot. The small trail that had no loop around so you have to back track or walk through the residential areas/roads but you get to pass by the nice scenery/semi private beach..
Difficulty: Not difficult at all. There’s not really a proper trail here. From the parking lot, the best view is at the “lookout” which is just a couple steps away.
Crowded-level: The lookout wasn’t too crowded when we went but the park/beach side was very popular – especially with scuba divers.
Overall, I probably wouldn’t come here for the trail – but for the “beach/park” portion.
Time: 40 minutes to go up (to the first lake)
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate – some parts were really steep so going up was a tiny bit tricky but going down was probably the most I’ve ever struggled… You really have to use your legs to go down for some parts of the hike
Crowded-level: Popular – we went early so it wasn’t packed at the viewpoint. Going down though, we bumped into a lot of people who were going up so there were a lot of delays in certain parts because we had to step aside and let them go by etc.
The drive was longer than the hike so I probably wouldn’t do this hike again anytime soon (unless we are going to all the way to Green Drop Lake).
Highly recommend you go at least once!!
Quick Video: https://youtu.be/EPGR-ekJRaY
Originally wanted to go to Deep Cove but due to an accident/massive delay in the traffic flow, we had to reroute and go elsewhere. Decided to go here even though we had no idea what it looked like or how long it took. We did not expect it to be such a long trail….
It took us 2.5 hours round trip – pretty much one big circle around the outer layer of SFU Burnaby.
There were a lot of trees in the way of the view / docks as we traveled along the path. A lot of people were going the opposite way as us so we thought we were going the wrong way … There are A LOT of different trails that you can start from and you will pass by other trails that people walk on.
We started on the Trans-Canada Trail behind the playground at Burnaby Mountain Park (right by the Horizon Restaurant). There were two routes (going up or going down) so we chose the route that went up thinking we would get more viewpoints.
Eventually we finished the Trans-Canada Trail and moved onto the Cougar Creek Trail. After the steep trail, we continued along Barnet Trail which was flatter and easy on the ankles … We passed by a Bike park which led us to a parking lot where we continued on the Mountain Air Trail. Then to get to the Burnaby Mountain Park Parking Lot faster, we had to take the Velodrome Trail which was the 500 stairs path.. Then we had to take the last trail which was the Pandora Trail back to the parking lot. However, there are TWO pandora trails.. You either turned left or right. We didn’t know and saw the first Pandora Trail sign which made us turn RIGHT and we ended up in a neighbourhood with nothing left… Had to backtrack and past where we came from and up a step where we saw another post saying this is also the Pandora Trail..
TL;DR – Trans-Canada Trail from Burnaby Mountain Parking Lot -> Cougar Creek Trail > Barnet Trail > Mountain Air Trail > Velodrome Trail > Pandora Trail > Back to the top of Burnaby Mountain Park
A little sad that the best view was at the top of Burnaby Mountain Park (where we started), but also a little proud we didn’t give up and turn back!
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Weather wasn’t the greatest but it wasn’t burning hot either. It was pretty much good hiking weather. This trail is fairly easy and quick to do. Having a nice picnic on top while admiring the view is highly suggested.
Crowded – moderate – lots of dogs with their owners coming down as we went up
View – moderate – elevation is high enough to get a nice view but it isn’t significant
Difficulty – easy – casual stroll; anyone could do this
I’m definitely coming back here when it is sunnier and to take better pictures on my new phone. 🙂
Went early so going up was a tad foggy and/or dewy and there were A LOT of mosquitoes.. If you have low patience with bugs, I wouldn’t recommend coming here. Almost made it to the top but unfortunately had to turn around.
Hope to return here with people who are motivated to get to the top and soak in the view / accomplishment ….
Crowded – low
View – meh – didn’t make it to the very top
Difficulty – slightly higher than medium…