Cheakamus River Trail
The Cheakamus River Trail is a scenic one-way hiking route that skirts along the banks of the Cheakamus river on the way up to Whistler Mountain. This 9.6mi trail makes its way through the Whistler Interpretive Forest, taking hikers through the beautiful woodlands on a steady climb to the alpine terrain of the mountain. Here, you will have sweeping views of Whistler and the surrounding area. Due to the length of the hike, it’s best to utilize the gondola for the return trip down Whistler Mountain.
To reach the parking area for the Cheakamus River Trail from Whistler, drive southwest on BC-99 S and turn left onto Cheakamus Lake Road. Make another left after 1804ft to stay on Cheakamus Lake Road, and you will find the parking area on your left in 656ft.
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Cheakamus River Trail
Cheakamus River Trail Description
The Cheakamus River Trail follows closely alongside the river before diverting east through the Whistler Interpretive Forest on an uphill climb to Whistler Mountain. This climb along the second half of the route is fairly steep, gaining nearly 4921ft of elevation from the bank of the Cheakamus River to the summit of the mountain. Hikers utilizing this trail should wear proper hiking footwear, bring plenty of water, and pack any gear that might help to traverse difficult or snowy trail conditions, including hiking poles, snowshoes, or microspikes. On the plus side, after making your way up the long incline of the trail, you can rest your legs and relax on the return journey by taking the gondola back down to the village.
Setting out from the parking area at Whistler Olympic Village, cross over the Cheakamus River and follow along the Farside Trail as it hugs tightly to the river. Continue south and keep the river on your right as you wind through the forested route within the Whistler Interpretive Forest. After 1.4mi along the trail, you will come upon the Cheakamus River Suspension Bridge to your right. Take a few moments to check out this beautifully engineered bridge but do not cross over to the other side, as you want to travel east toward Whistler Mountain.
Continue south for 1969ft before following the trail east to leave the Cheakamus River behind you. From here, you will begin the steep climb uphill to the mountain. Keep on the trail through a series of switchbacks, following along as it winds its way through the dense forest cover. Shortly after passing a tower on your left, make a right at the junction onto Khyber Pass. Continue on this trail until you meet up with the High Note Trail, which you will take to the left to reach the summit of Whistler Mountain. Having hiked the Cheakamus River Trail, take some time to enjoy the beautiful views of Whistler and the surrounding mountains before taking the gondola down to the village below.
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