It's still snowing in March!
That sucks for people trying to get around in the city, or people like me who are not crazy about winter sports. I tried skiing once, but was terrible at it and even crashed into a tree!! Snowboarding is on my bucket list, but the cost of these sports adds up quickly.
Enter snowshoeing, a harmless, low-impact, affordable and enjoyable stomp through the snow! Rather than hibernate and be a sloth at home, you get to engage in an interactive and enjoyable workout.
Snowshoeing has many great fitness benefits. It lets you get your cardio on, while also building strength, agility, balance and endurance. The best part is you get to be outside, breathe in crisp winter air and take in beautiful white-capped landscapes!
Here are 2 beginner snowshoeing trails for those who want to ease into the sport.
Hollyburn Mountain is an intermediate hike offering picturesque views of Vancouver, Burrard Inlet and the Lions. The well-marked trail is located right at the top of Cypress Mountain. It is around 7km both ways and has an elevation of 450m.
The first section of the trail is a rather easy climb. However, just a few minutes in, the first steep hill takes you to the first ridge under the power lines before veering left and into the trees.
Have fun stomping around in the thick snow along the trail.
There was also a fairly wide, open flat section with whiskey jacks flying around. I was able to capture the moment when one of these adorable creatures landed on my hand in search of bread.
This was another great trail at Cypress Mountain. It's the perfect trip for beginners looking for a slight challenge. The trailhead if at the Cypress Mountain chalet in the alpine area (not at the nordic area where the other snowshoe trails are).
The steady ascent to the top takes around 1 hour. It was all worth it when we saw the stunning panoramic views of Howe Sound and Bowen Island at the top.
There were slopes that we slid down on as well, which made the afternoon whiz by.
My favorite part was our backcountry adventure going around Yew Lake and across the unmarked wooded areas. Be sure to take this detour to experience the real magic.
It was amazing to walk across a large frozen lake on a wide, open expanse of snow. So much peace and quiet; it truly felt like a winter wonderland.
You can check the rental prices for snowshoes at the various mountain resorts websites. If you're planning to go more often, it's more economical to buy your own snowshoes. MEC has some great ones.
I hope you try snowshoeing if you have not already. I will definitely be exploring more intermediate trails during next year's winter season!