Sea to Sky Gondola RatingThe Sea to Sky Gondola opened in the spring of 2014 and has rapidly expanded into a marvellous array of hiking trails and mountaintop attractions. Located between Stawamus Chief Provincial Park and Shannon Falls Provincial Park the gondola carries you rapidly from the sea to the sky.  Departing just a few hundred metres from the ocean at an elevation of 35 metres, to 885 metres in just 10 minutes.

  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProVery fun gondola ride up
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProGreat views from the gondola
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProBeautiful hiking with little effort
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProConvenient location on Hwy 99
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProBeautiful sundeck at the Summit Lodge
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProFood & booze at the Summit Lodge
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProMany trails start from the lodge
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProSuspension bridge & lots of viewpoints
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ConVery expensive access fee
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ConRestaurant food is not great

Squamish & Whistler Trails

 Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerAlexander Falls  Easy Hiking Trail - Vancouver HikingAlice Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyAncient Cedars  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerBlack Tusk  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerBlackcomb Mountain  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerBrandywine Falls  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyBrandywine Meadows  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyBrew Lake  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerCallaghan Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerCheakamus Lake  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyCheakamus River  Whistler Hiking Trail HardCirque Lake  Hiking Trail ModerateElfin Lakes  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyFlank Trail  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Park  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerHelm Creek  Hiking Trail HardHigh Falls Creek  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyJane Lakes  Joffre Lakes Hike in Whistler in SeptemberJoffre Lakes  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyKeyhole Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail - Vancouver HikingLevette Lake  Hiking Trail Hard Dog FriendlyLogger’s Lake  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyMadeley Lake  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyMeager Hot Springs Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerNairn Falls  Whistler Hiking Trail HardNewt Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerPanorama Ridge  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyParkhurst Ghost Town  Hiking Trail Hard Dog FriendlyRainbow Falls  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRainbow Lake  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyRing Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRusset Lake  Pay Use Hiking TrailSea to Sky Gondola  Whistler Hiking Trail EasySea to Sky Trail  Easy Hiking Trail - Vancouver HikingShannon Falls  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSkookumchuck Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSloquet Hot Springs  Sproatt East  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerSproatt West  Hiking Trail HardStawamus Chief  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerTaylor Meadows  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyTrain Wreck  Hiking Trail Hard Dog FriendlyUpper Shannon Falls  Hiking Trail Hard - Whistler TrailsWedgemount Lake  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerWhistler Mountain

In early June you will still feel the chill in the air from the snowy mountain peaks all around. The deluxe, shiny and new gondolas comfortably seat 8 and the entire 10 minute ride gives you stunning views of Howe Sound, the three summits of The Chief on your left, and distant snowy mountains up ahead. The gondola cabins are almost entirely windows so no matter where you sit you have amazing views. If you are driving from Vancouver the large and easy to spot, Sea to Sky Gondola parking lot is just 45 minutes from Vancouver.  Just off of the Sea to Sky Highway, look for the entrance just past the Shannon Falls Provincial Park entrance or just a couple hundred metres before the Stawamus Chief Provincial Park entrance.  Parking is free, however they have signs that indicate that if you plan on parking more than 3 hours you should park at the Shannon Falls parking lot instead.  This is a good option as well if you want to take a look at Shannon Falls as well.  You can park there, see the amazing Shannon Falls and continue walking to the Sea to Sky Gondola along the connecting trail in less than 15 minutes.

Sea to Sky Gondola Summit Lodge

At the top of the gondola you arrive at the spectacular Summit Lodge. You immediately are drawn to enter this cliff-edge building with a restaurant, coffee shop, bar and an enormous sundeck that stretches around half of the building.  The sundeck has dozens of tables and of course views of everything.  Gondola's coming and going, Howe Sound, Sky Pilot and Copilot(mountains).  At one end of the sundeck the Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge extends across a chasm to a rocky outcrop in the direction of Sky Pilot Mountain.  The amazing Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge takes you across to the Spirit Trail and your first of several massive and stunning viewing areas and the start of an interpretive tour of this wonderful forest.  Everywhere you turn you see an interesting, written description of what surrounds you as well as frequent park benches to sit and enjoy the view.

Endless Beautiful Views of Howe Sound

Sea to Sky Gondola View

Sea to Sky Gondola Interpretive Trails

"A History in Nature" is the first of these well though out, interpretive murals.  It describes the Squamish Nation that has lived here for thousands of years and are part of the Coast Salish Aboriginal Peoples that past and present, stretch along the coast of what is now British Columbia.  Prior to European contact in the late 1700's the Squamish people utilized the land, plants and animals in the area in traditional ways with accumulated knowledge of many generations.  The mural depicts a beautiful illustration of the "Thunderbird", the official symbol of the Squamish Nation.

Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge

Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge

Nature's Hardware Store

A crushed gravel trail quickly ascends beyond this mural, into the forest and the interpretive tour continues.  "Nature's Hardware Store".  The Squamish people used cedar trees for many things such as clothing, baskets, houses, canoes and various tools.  Douglas fir trees were used for canoe poles, harpoon shafts, gaff hooks and dip net handles.  Yew trees were used for bows and harpoons.  Maple trees were used for canoe paddles.  Stinging nettles were made into fishing nets and fishing lines.  Moss was used for diapers, bedding and insulation for houses.  "Nature's Grocery Store" consisted of blackberries, blackcaps, blueberries, huckleberries, salal berries, salmonberries, wild strawberries, berry shoots and various edible roots.

Another Amazing View Over the Valley

Sea to Sky Gondola Viewpoint

Mountains Around the Sea to Sky Gondola

You quickly notice along the trail that the distant skyline in dominated by some startlingly jagged and snowy mountains.  Sky Pilot(mountain) is the jagged, teeth-like mountain with Ledge Mountain on its left and Copilot Mountain to its right.  Copilot Mountain is the distinctly dome shaped mountain that looks remarkably similar to The Lions(West Lion), just south of Squamish.  Looking to the left of these rocky, tree-less peaks is the nearer and mostly tree covered Mount Habrich.  The short, 400 metre Spirit Trail that began at the Sky Pilot Suspension Bridge returns you to the Summit Lodge and a large mapboard at the juncture of several more trails.  The Sky Pilot Valley trail and the Skyline Ridge trail take you deep into the backcountry and into the alpine towards Sky Pilot, The Copilot and Ledge Mountain.  These trails are definitely for the adventurous and advanced hikers, although they only become difficult when you near Sky Pilot.

Sky Pilot and The Copilot

Sky Pilot and The Copilot

More Best Squamish Hiking - Sea to Sky Gondola

Best Squamish Hiking Trails Guide

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