The 14 shared use huts are free and are filled on a first come, first served basis. The path is established, well marked and easy to follow. One of these is Haywire Bay Regional Park. The coast is susceptible to heavy and prolonged downpours, especially in spring and autumn. The Sunshine Coast Trail is Canada’s longest hut to hut hiking trail. The main backpacking season for the entire Sunshine Coast Trail is May to September. The first, from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale, takes 40 minutes. It is available in paper format at Tourism Powell River. Both. Powell River is an ideal place to stay due the availability of accommodation, local facilities and central location. Visit SunshineCoastTrail.com to plan your trip today! Due to the rugged nature of the British Columbia coastline (fjords, inlets and mountains et al), the Sunshine Coast is accessible only via air and boat. Inspired to go hiking on the Sunshine Coast Trail? There wasn’t a soul to be seen so we had the hut to ourselves through the stormy night. We stopped at one of the picnic areas for a while to try and slow things down a little and take in the last of our Sunshine Coast Trail experience. Eagle Walz, co-founder and architect of British Columbia's Sunshine Coast Trail, discusses the construction of Canada's longest hut-to-hut hiking trail. The SCT Passport is a fun way to record your journey on the SCT (thru-hiking or otherwise). It was frustrating, but such is the unpredictable way of nature. A common solution is to have two vehicles, one parked at each of the chosen trailheads. It’s not mentioned in my guidebook published 2013, of course. We took 2 ferries from Vancouver to get to Powell River where we staged for the hike. Sunshine Coast Trail, Powell River. The Sunshine Coast Connector operates a seasonal service run between Langdale and Powell River with some stops along the route. The choice of where to park our vehicle was probably one of the biggest decisions we had to make when planning our SCT hike. Stephen Hui. I won’t give any more explanation (mostly because I have none) so you can hike the trail and discover that for yourself. We found rainwater barrels outside both Tin Hat and Walt Hill huts. I’ve written the following advice with multi-day and thru-hikers in mind, but day hikers will find a lot of relevant information here too. We have since completed other sections of the trail and have repeated many other sections closer to St. John’s since that time and will continue to do as long as we can. The origins of the Sunshine Coast Trail go back to 1992 when a group of local enthusiasts formed the Power River Parks and Wilderness Society (known as PRPAWS or just PAWS), a non-profit volunteer organisation. Confederation and Tin Hat huts have basements (the latter with a rock floor) that can provide extra sleeping room when necessary. Most of the mountains are still shrouded in cloud, however. Another day at Tin Hat was simply not an option. The Final Agreement treaty, in effect from 2016, included 8,323 hectares of settlement land, some of which the Sunshine Coast Trail travels through. Yep, that’s an initial loss of 450m and a gain of 1000m elevation without even taking into account the meandering nature of the trail in general! It has huts for shared public use (you don't have to carry a tent), and weaves through o Here, the elevation could finally be appreciated. Ferry times vary depending on the season and don’t necessarily line up. 1. We also find the Sunshine Coast to be relatively quiet and undiscovered, despite being so close to both Vancouver and Vancouver Island. * For full directions and descriptions of these trails, see The Sunshine Coast Trail guidebook, by Eagle Walz, available online or at Tourism Powell River (on Joyce Avenue) or Breakwater Books in Powell River (on the corner of Marine Avenue and Alberni Street). The Sunshine Coast Trail is a 180-kilometre back country hiking experience that stretches from Sarah Point in Desolation Sound to Saltery Bay. Sunshine Coast Art Crawl. This is an excellent guidebook that will remain in my library forever. If you have some flexibility, you could just make it up as you go. and a portion of fish and chips were calling our name. Black bears are more commonly seen than grizzly bears. In terms of difficulty, the Sunshine Coast Trail is not technically hard. The initial aim, was to build a long distance hiking trail that would link the remaining old growth in the area. Most hikers walk some 10 to 15 km per day. Sunshine Coast Trails. The path was narrow in places and the overgrown foliage dripped even more raindrops onto us. There is a locally owned gear store called Powell River Outdoors. Unsecured parking lots can be found on the Sunshine Coast Trail maps on the official website here (marked in blue). It’s even more impressive in the rain. I waited for JR near the top, snapping a couple of photos of the view and yelled down that he should hurry. With days of rain already, the streams and waterfalls were bursting with water and the soaked ground was almost bouncy in places. Magnificent views abound, even on slightly misty days. Click here for a … The SCT offers up fantastic coastal views, wanders along lakes and creeks, climbs mountains, and features rustic huts at multiple points along the way, making it the longest hut-to-hut hike in Canada. The Sunshine Coast Trail Guidebook by Eagle Walz is a step-by-step description of all the trails that make up the SCT. Since the trail goes up and down, start in good condition. Jesse from the Sunshine Coast Shuttle picked us up and took us to our starting point on Inland Lake. Sometimes, even more frequently. The strangest sight had to be a tea party along the trail. Lots of challenging uphill and downhill, exposed roots and rocks, and dense forest. The map below shows a closer view of the Fairview section of the SCT. On the upside, the views were open, the skies sunny and we were able to dry out our souls a little. 9,8 K J’aime. In this context, that means active or dedicated logging areas, Rieveley Pond to Haywire Bay camping (24km) or Townsite, Powell River for resupply (18km), Townsite, Powell River or Haywire Bay to Confederation Lake (23/17km), Confederation Lake to Tin Hat Mountain (14km), Tin Hat Mountain to Elk Lake (20km or 13km if you take shorter route like we did), Sarah Point to Powell River, staying at Manzanita and Rieveley Pond huts (3 days, 50km), Inland Lake to Lang Bay, staying at Confederation Lake, Tin Hat, Elk Lake, Walt Hill (5 days, 62/70km), Fiddlehead Landing to Lang Bay, staying at Tin Hat, Elk Lake, Walt Hill (4 days, 56km), Lang Bay to Saltery Bay, staying at Golden Stanley, Mount Troubridge, Rainy Day Lake (3 days, 43km), Manzanita – Partially open with closed sleeping loft, kilometre 16, Rieveley Pond – Partially open with closed sleeping loft, kilometre 33, Inland Lake West – Small closed hut, kilometre 65, Anthony Island (Inland Lake) – Small closed hut, kilometre 67, Confederation Lake – Fully enclosed, winterized hut, kilometre 74, Fiddlehead Landing – Partially open with closed sleeping loft, kilometre 81, Tin Hat Mountain – Fully enclosed and winterized, kilometre 90, Elk Lake – Partially open with closed sleeping loft, kilometre 110, Walt Hill – Fully enclosed and winterized, kilometre 123, Golden Stanley – Partially open with closed sleeping loft, kilometre 145, Mount Troubridge – Mid-sized, fully enclosed and winterized, kilometre 158, Mount Troubridge Emergency – Small and insulated, kilometre 159, Rainy Day Lake – Partially open, kilometre 169, Fairview Bay – Fully enclosed, kilometre 173. The varied landscape here has so much to offer, especially in terms of outdoor adventure. There is natural beauty to be seen almost everywhere along the 180km length of the trail, with truly spectacular panoramas to be found. The trail itself is marked with bright orange diamond blazes, appearing every five metres or so. Credit: Kelly Funk Photography, Sunshine Coast Tourism. Where there is no outhouse or composting toilet, Sarah Point, the SCT’s northern terminus, can be reached by water as well as dirt 4X4 road. We are Jean Robert and Gemma, a British-Canadian couple who love to explore beyond the beaten path by foot, road and paddle. Slowly at first, but then the steep switchbacks arrive. 0. This means you can access all this unspoiled wilderness without even having to bring a tent! It winds through both rural and town areas and has some winding sections near Earls Cove. Mosquitoes are more of an issue in spring and early summer, so keep that in mind if you’re sensitive to biting bugs. Click here for a larger version. English program here. That evening, we took stock of our food supplies and hatched a plan. This section does include some affiliate links. I still had the opportunity to see so many magnificent places and truly immerse myself in nature. The SCT is marked on both the Maps.me (we used this one) and Hiking Project apps. A wide but rough 4X4 road appeared, leading almost to the top. Even on the Sunshine Coast itself, there can be little confusion about where the Sunshine Coast Trail actually is. I clicked on a bunch of your affiliate links as thanks! The climb was tiring in places but the glint of Confederation Lake didn’t take too long to appear. BCTransit operates a limited year round service along the South Coast (Langdale to Half Moon Bay) and also on the North Coast (Lund to Powell River, Lang Bay and also to Saltery Bay on request). What are you waiting for? To put it simply, the Sunshine Coast Trail traverses the ‘upper’ (or ‘North Coast’) portion of the Sunshine Coast only, from Sarah Point in the north to Saltery Bay in the south. The Sunshine Coast Trail travels through a variety of landscapes, from beautiful rocky coastline and pretty lakes to lush temperate rainforest and mountain summits. There are also many day hike options on the SCT , especially if you have two vehicles available (or use a shuttle service). The Sunshine Coast Trail is kept in very good condition. For the most part, it is a two lane highway. As well as tent campsites and showers (extra $2), this campground has a reservable cabin available for $50/night. The challenging aspects for most hikers will be the meandering terrain (lots of ups and downs), long distances and slippery/muddy surfaces during or after rain. The powerful tide changes cause huge waves and whirlpools to form in the Narrows. ... (Canada) in august 2021 : Canada's longest hut to hut hiking trail. The section we did (Inland Lake to Walt Hill) has the most elevation and is generally considered to be the most difficult physically. window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; No problem. A grand vision that reached its culmination with the creation of 14 handcrafted backcountry huts, linking each section together. These trail markers can be spotted on trees, fences, fallen logs, bridges and more. We gathered water, not knowing yet that there would be a filled-to-bursting rainwater barrel at the top. One example is Homestead Creek (near the Rieveley Pond Hut). Our plans changed a little, as you’ll discover in our trip report below. And what a well built and maintained hut it was, with an incredibly pretty outlook of the still lake. Accessible only via boat or helicopter, Princess Louisa Inlet is one of the most beautiful places I have been anywhere in the world. The real challenge of the day came in the last 1.5km with the hill to end all hills. The Adventure Sunshine Coast online guidebook is provided and maintained by Sunshine Coast Council and Queensland Parks & Wildlife Service. This means that we may receive a small percentage sales made through these links at no extra cost to you. Our original plan was for a five day, four night trip, averaging no more than 15km a day. For information on upcoming opportunities and events, visit our Volunteer With Us page. ; Sunshine Coast trails are located in one of the most beautiful places on earth. There are paid parking lots in Lund, Mowat Bay, Powell River Government Marina, the Shinglemill Pub and the Lang Bay Store. We are always looking for people to come and help out with trail maintenance, building projects, and for people who are interested in behind-the-scenes work like marketing, publicity and organizing events. Off Track Travel is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. All are free to use and operate on a first come, first serve system. This is the best outdoor adventure vacation value in North America! Campsites, both paid and free, are marked on the Sunshine Coast Trail website maps here. Trip.com introduces detailedly Sunshine Coast travel guides of 2020, where large number of Sunshine Coast attractions in 9 are collected, and tourists can find travel guidebook regarding popular scenic spots, popular cities, travel lines, food and most popular destinations. For thru-hikers or groups with only one vehicle, there are other solutions: The Sunshine Coast Trail may well be the best signed path we have ever hiked. It is possible to fly to Powell River from Vancouver on Pacific Coastal Airlines. Tin Hat Mountain, Walt Hill and Mount Troubridge all feature steep elevation with amazing panoramas, while Confederation Lake, Rainy Day Lake and Fairview Bay also make for great destinations. We had to climb over some trees brought down by the storm, very close to a logging operation. Yep, it really is an old courthouse, but is completely renovated and each room has a unique theme. 170 km / 6,000 m total elevation gain, multi day trail event self-sufficient style. Also in town is a Walmart, Dollarama, Canadian Tire, choice of fast food chains (A&W, McDonald’s) and numerous banks. It is also possible to organise a supply drop with Sunshine Coast Shuttles. Thanks for the memories, SCT – we’ll be back to finish soon. It’s a beautiful section of the British Columbia coastline, starting just north west of Vancouver and sitting directly across from Vancouver Island. He would be the only person we see for the entire six day period! gtag('js', new Date()); As Event Organisers we are often asked why ‘Compulsory Equipment’ is included as part of some of our events. The simple answer to this question is that it’s about keeping participants safe, which is our number one priority. A map of the Sunshine Coast Trail can be picked up at the Powell River Visitor Information Centre. Along the trail are campsites. There are no bridges connecting the Sunshine Coast to the rest of the British Columbia. Once all stamps are collected, the Visitor Centre will issue you a SCT Certificate of Completion! There are 12 huts along the trail (and at least one emergency shelter) spaced approximately a day’s walk apart. The 360 degree views we were promised were gone, just like that. Don’t forget to watch for whales! Ripe blueberries started to line the twisty trail. Other supply points on the SCT are Lund (bakery, pub, restaurant), Townsite (brewery, restaurants, convenience store) and Lang Bay (convenience store, pizza). Base your own itinerary on available budget and time, while considering your group’s fitness and experience. We quickly scrambled up to the summit behind the hut and kept our fingers crossed. We also passed some lovely camping areas, perfect for thru-hikers looking to escape the huts during the busier months. There has been a lot of trail building going on! Sunshine Coast Trails. The Sunshine Coast Trail traverses a wide variety of landscapes, from coastal shorelines, along creeks and lakes, through old growth forests to panoramic mountaintops. Lakes and creeks. With the weather warming up faster on the coast, the SCT is a popular spring destination when other multi-day hiking routes are still snowed in. We love sharing these experiences to inspire and help others to do the same. Another way to access the Sunshine Coast is from Comox (Vancouver Island) to Powell River. The Sunshine Coast Trail is unusual in that it is not located in a provincial park, national park or other protected area. Townsite Brewing is also conveniently located just across the street. Runners are required to carry compulsory equipment with them at all times throughout the trail run. It felt never ending at times, not helped by the red kilometre markers disappearing for a time. One half of the Canadian/British couple behind Off Track Travel, Gemma is happiest when hiking on the trail or planning the next big travel adventure. The weather forecast was pretty poor but the lack of life anywhere does make me think that September, in general, is a great time to hike the Sunshine Coast Trail! 5K likes. There are lots of great places to stop for a swim — many of them noted in the Sunshine Coast Trail guidebook. 555 likes. Where noted as ‘partially open,’ there is a covered seating area and closed sleeping loft. The Sunshine Coast Trail is a 180-kilometre back country hiking experience that stretches from Sarah Point in Desolation Sound to Saltery Bay. The rocky path led through saddening clear cuts. The rain was on and off, offering teasing, misty views at ‘Vomit Vista’ and heavy showers during lunch at Fiddlehead Farm (thankfully, there’s a shelter). 53 likes. Experience 180 kilometers of hiking adventure on the beautiful Sunshine Coast of British Columbia. The Sunshine Coast Trail 4th Edition: This 180-km route near Powell River, BC, extends from Sarah Point to Saltery Bay. The Sunshine Coast Trail is a 180km (with around 6000m total elevation gain) hiking route from Sarah Point to Saltery Bay, travelling through both public and private lands. As well as food, you can inquire about bag storage. Most impressive along this section were the huge fallen trees (see example below) and logging artifacts. The building manager lives next door (the house to the immediate north of the lot) and accepts donations for parking. Viewpoints passed with little to see, until we reach the ‘Walt Hilton’ emergency shelter at kilometre `120.5. In addition to the orange blazes, there are numerous wooden directional signs, kilometre markers and SCT maps at trailheads. What is the best Sunshine Coast travel guidebook? With such huge choice in overnight accommodation (huts, campsites, paid lodging), there are many ways to structure a multi-day trip or thru-hike on the Sunshine Coast Trail. 4.9K likes. Our final day was mostly downhill, an almost literal comedown. Sunshine Coast Trail Sunshine Coast Trail Access Powell Forest Canoe Route Portage on Canoe Route Campsite Shelter or Hut Park or Protected Area Elevation contours at 200 metre increments Visitor Information Centre, 4760 Joyce Ave, Powell River 1-877-816-8669 MAP LEGEND 0 1 2 4 KILOMETRES 6 8. In theory you don’t need to camp. After checking out the Anthony Island hut (small, but I’m sure very welcome after a long hike), we started the climb up to Confederation Lake. From our finishing point at kilometre 134, we needed to walk 2km along the (wide) Dixon Road to Highway 101 and then a very short 100m stretch north to get back to the hall. Like us, the bear had probably not seen or heard any other life on the trail for days. If you liked this post, PIN or save it for future reference with the below images! The second ferry, from Earls Cove to Saltery Bay, is a slightly longer journey at 50 minutes. In 1992 a small group of people founded the Powell River Parks and Wilderness Society (PAWS) and started building hiking trails that linked the remaining stands of old growth forests in the region’s front country. The Shingle Mill pub is located just off the trail at kilometre 50. Sunshine Coast Mountain Bike Trail Challenge - August 8+9, 2015 The busiest time on the trail seems to be mid May to August. The aptly named Sunshine Coast Trail runs 180 km along British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast – from Sarah’s Point in the north to Saltery Bay at the southern end. I soon felt glad of that easy section around the lake, as the path ascended up through the dense rainforest. Come see for yourself…. With the Sunshine Coast Trail being an end-to-end hike (as opposed to a loop), there has to be some thought concerning navigation. There is space around each hut for tents, useful if the hut is full or for hikers who prefer more privacy. The path weaves along and away from the coast, also featuring lakes, waterfalls, old growth tree groves, creeks, working forests, mountain peaks and panoramic viewpoints. Here is an example of what a typical SCT thru-hike may look like a reasonably fit hiker (comfortable with walking up to 8 hours a day with a full pack) who wants to stay in the huts as much as possible. My new guidebook, 105 Hikes in and around Southwestern British Columbia, features select trails in the Sunshine Coast and 20 other regions, including northern Washington. We have provided a fair amount of information about each trail to help you decide which trails are best suited for you. Both ferry routes are operated by BC Ferries and accept vehicles of all sizes as well as bikes and pedestrians. The Sunshine Coast Trail isn’t the only world class attraction on the Sunshine Coast! Section maps are available on the Sunshine Coast Trail website here. The Sunshine Coast Trail website is a great resource with maps, information about the trails, huts, and how to get Powell River/Sunshine Coast. It took almost 24 hours (and plenty of Yahtzee) for the cloud dissipates some. “Walz tricked me into extending an existing trail,” Glaspey writes in the foreward to Walz’s The Sunshine Coast Trail guidebook. Completed in 2000, the Sunshine Coast Trail is continually being improved today, with the most recent hut (Confederation Lake) being built in 2016. There are also section maps available for the Avenza Maps app. Another paid campground is located in Inland Lake Provincial Park. They can be a bit tricky to start, operate using pellets only (bring your own to guarantee stock) and require constant attention. Although you can turn up and pay cash to the driver, it is a good idea to secure a seat with an online reservation. Ocean landscape. The next morning, we wake at 6am with plenty of hope. We have been noodling the idea of hiking the Sunshine Coast Trail for two years, and have been hindered by the dearth of online information on the trail. The day continued as awesome as it started, with wall-to-wall blue skies. I love the tremendous amount of info that you’ve packed into this article. We stopped at misty Coyote Lake for a snack, where the motionless surface blended perfectly with the milky sky. Hey there! In 1992 a small group of people founded the Powell River Parks and Wilderness Society (PAWS) and started building hiking trails that linked the remaining stands of old growth forests in the region’s front country. Snowshoeing the trail is popular in the colder months, with Confederation Lake, Tin Hat Mountain, Walt Hill and Mount Troubridge being popular overnight destinations. Sunshine Coast Trail Challenge. Weekend and holiday sailings can be very busy. My research before this trip indicated that the section from Tin Hat to Marsh Lake via Lewis Lake isn’t particularly interesting. We plan to hike the other two sections (Sarah Point to Inland Lake and Lang Bay to Saltery Bay) either in 2020 or 2021. This is also the day we became acquainted some incredible old growth trees. But finally, our first Sunshine Coast Trail hut appear! 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