Grunting up Grouse in late December 2014

Here in the Vancouver, BC area, Grouse Mountain is well known.  There is a gondola that will take you up to the Chalet and recreation and skiing area or you can get there using your own 2 feet and save big bucks!!  There are a number of trails that go up to the Chalet but the 2 most famous are “The Grouse Grind” and “The BCMC”.

Both trails have you hike up 850 metres from the parking lot to get to the Chalet.  The Grind is a bit steeper and a few hundred metres shorter as a result and is the one most people use but I prefer the BCMC.  Less people and just a bit less steep and it gets you to the same place.  Plus in winter, The Grind has some serious avalanche and steep sections that if you lose your footing, you’re going to slide down a looooonnnng way.  No such places on the BCMC.

Although the trails are “officially closed” during the winter months, that never stops the hundreds of “regulars” like myself .

Since I do this on a regular basis – several times a month – I buy a yearly gondola membership pass so that I can just get on the gondola for the ride down.  Saves the stress on the knees and joints that pounding downhill can aggravate.  And I really love the trail in the winter.  No rocks or roots to navigate, just the compacted trail and the beautiful forest and trees covered in snow.

Generally takes me about 90 minutes in the winter with snow on the trail and 75-80 minutes in the summer.  Keeners do it under an hour!!  It’s a great workout, both for strength and cardio, and keeps me in shape for hiking other peaks when the opportunity arises.

Here’s a couple of pics from the Gondola ride down last week.

This is the view towards another pair of famous peaks, The Lions, that overlook Vancouver.

BCMC first snow-1

And here’s an abstract of a shot I snapped of just the trees.

BCMC first snow-2

Always good to get out especially when the sun is shining 🙂

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