Guardian of the city

Mountain-Biking to Elfin Lakes

13rd August 2016

Such an amazing feeling to ride your mountain-bike to Elfin Lakes and enjoy the fresh alpine lake in a clear summer day!

I love all the options that Elfin Lakes has to offer. During the past year I've been able to visit this place 3 times already, experiencing it in a different way each time: snowshoeing for an overnight in the hut, hiking while camping outside during fall, and by mountain-biking last summer!

I had the chance to have some family in town last August and they proposed to drop me somewhere with my mountain-bike while they were doing less "adventurous" activities. I knew Elfin Lakes from my first overnight here last winter, and remembered it was one of the rare (if not only?) hiking trail open to mountain-biker in the Garibaldi Provincial Park.

After being dropped at the parking lot, I started my way up. The first 2km are very steep and you better prepare yourself if you don't want to kill your lungs after 5min. A big part of the mountain-bike track is actually the hiking trail (be careful and respect your fellow hikers), with a small portion dedicated to bikes before you reach the ridge.

The ascent is not particularly technical but you will have to deal with this first steep section and some loose rocks here and there... Nothing compared to the feeling you will get when you reach the ridge to discover a panoramic view of the massive Mount Garibaldi on your left. A few more minutes and you will arrived at the 2 magnificent Elfin Lakes near the Ranger Cabin and the Hut. Time to go for a dip to relieve your burning legs, relax and enjoy the view!

The way back is way easier and 95% downhill which means lots of fun! Once again be very careful of the hikers on the trail - yell when you are approaching - nobody likes to be surprised by a rushing bike coming from nowhere. My family was waiting me in Squamish so I continued my way 20 more downhill kilometers after the parking lot.

Some numbers

- Trail Head to Elfin Lakes : 11km / 1h30

- Elfin Lakes to Squamish : 30km / 30/45min

- Elevation Gain : 1200m


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