Lighthouse Park – West Vancouver

Nature, Photographs

During the recent BC Day holiday, we decided to check out Lighthouse Park in West Vancouver. Apparently we weren’t the only ones with this brilliant idea. Fortunately, we managed to find a parking spot at about the same time we were getting ready to switch to our  plan B (which was a good thing considering we didn’t actually have a plan B).

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After a quick read of the park’s information board, we decided we would head straight down the main trail towards the Point Atkinson Lighthouse. Although we expected the lighthouse to be the main attraction, the walk down the trail was nothing short of spectacular. Centuries old trees, and massive granite boulders, form natural boundaries along the path that gently winds downhill towards the Burrard Inlet.

The next surprise was the multi-coloured Arbutus trees. Such a contrast from the Douglas Firs, Western Redcedars and Western Hemlocks.

The trees eventually give way to a spectacular shoreline. The giant boulders provide a wonderful vantage point to enjoy a panoramic view of Vancouver. From here you can see all the way from Stanley Park to the University of British Columbia. The view on this day was hampered by a smokey haze from distant forest fires, though it was still pretty amazing!

We finally we made our way over to our original destination point – the Point Atkinson Lighthouse. This 100+ year-old structure, that stands 60 feet tall, is still in operation today.

Maplewood Flats – North Vancouver, BC

flowers, Nature, Photographs

The Maplewood Conservation Area is easy to miss if you aren’t expressly looking for it. This 96 hectare gem, managed by the Wild Bird Trust of BC, is tucked between the Dollarton Highway and the Burrard Inlet. 0X8A0123

It seemed to be relatively quiet on the day we visited “the mudflats” (as it is known to many of the locals). With the exception of a few bird watchers, we felt like we had the place all to ourselves. 0X8A0023To our right, as we headed toward the entrance to the trail area, we were greeted by an ironic public art installation – From Shangri-la to Shangri-la. Artist Kevin Lum’s creation pays homage to the squatter’s shacks that once dotted the local shoreline. The original shacks, many of which were homes to artists and writers, were burned to the ground in the early 1970s by the District of North Vancouver.

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From Shangri-la to Shangri-La ~ Artist Kevin Lum

It was just a short walk down the trail to the waterfront.

While the waterfront views were amazing, we also managed to find some interesting inland sights.