Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Barrier formed as a result of huge lava flows from Clinker Peak on the west shoulder of Mount Price during the last ice age.  About thirteen thousand years ago, the Cheakamus River valley was filled by an enormous glacier, part of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet.  Lava flowed from Clinker Peak and pressed up against the massive glacier.  The lava ponded and formed what geologists call an ice-marginal lava flow.  

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsWhistler, the surrounding mountains, and Garibaldi Provincial Park are home to two types of bears.  Black bears and grizzly bears.  Black bears are frequently seen throughout the valley and often in Whistler Village.  Grizzly bears, on the other hand, are rarely seen, and only deep in the wilderness, well away from Whistler Village.  Black bears around Whistler are generally skittish and will flee into the forest when approached by people.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Coast Mountains run from the Yukon down to Vancouver along the west coast of British Columbia in a band that averages 300 kilometres wide(190 miles).  The length of the Coast Mountains is roughly 1600 kilometres(1000 miles).  They are often referred to as the BC Coastal Range or the Coast Range.  The Coast Mountains are comprised of three mountain ranges, the Pacific Ranges, the Kitimat Ranges, and the Boundary Ranges.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsErratic or Glacier Erratic is a piece of rock that has been carried by glacial ice, often hundreds of kilometres. Characteristic of their massive size and improbable looking placement.  Erratics are frequently seen around Whistler and Garibaldi Provincial Park.  Either as bizarre curiosities or a place to relax in the sun.  On a sunny day, a large sun-facing erratic will often be warm and sometimes even hot, providing a comfortable and surreal place to rest. 

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Fissile is the stunning Matterhorn-looking mountain that is visible from Village Gate Boulevard in Whistler.  Looking up from Village Gate you will see the distant Peak to Peak Gondola spanning Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Mountain.  In the background distance you will see The Fissile.  In the bright sunshine of summer it will be vibrantly coloured red.  In the evening it turns dark red then fades into an ominous black.  In the winter months, of course, The Fissile is a striking, white pyramid. 

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Fitzsimmons Range is a subsection of the Garibaldi Ranges that covers the area between the valleys of Cheakamus Lake and Fitzsimmons Creek.  Fitzsimmons Creek cuts between Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Mountain and largely originates from the Fitzsimmons Glacier.  The Fitzsimmons Glacier and Mount Fitzsimmons are part of the Overlord Massif, which gets its name from the highest peak in the area, Overlord Mountain

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Garibaldi Ranges are a subdivision of the Pacific Ranges of the Coast Mountains.  Deriving its name from Mount Garibaldi, the Garibaldi Ranges cover the huge stretch of mountains between two enormous river valleys.  The Lillooet River valley on the east side and the Cheakamus River/Green River valley on the west.  Whistler is located on the west edge of the Garibaldi Ranges, while Pemberton near the north end and Vancouver at the south end. 

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Garibaldi Volcanic Belt is a line of mostly dormant stratovolcanoes and subglacial volcanoes largely centred around Whistler and extending through much of the Coast Mountains.  Divided into sections with the Mount Garibaldi Area at the southern end and the Mount Cayley Area southwest of Whistler.   The Mount Meager Area is west of Pemberton and the Bridge River Cones Area northwest of the Meager Area.   

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsGreen Lake is the marvellously vivid, green coloured lake just north of Whistler Village.  Driving north on the Sea to Sky Highway, Green Lake appears along the highway on your right.  The vivid colour is always impressive and on a sunny day can be spectacular.  One of the best(and easiest) places in Whistler to capture an extraordinary sunrise or sunset photo, is along the Green Lake viewpoint along the edge of the highway.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsHoary Marmots are the cute, pudgy, twenty plus pound ground squirrels that have evolved to live quite happily in the hostile alpine areas around Whistler.  In the northwest of North America, marmots have a distinct grey in their hair, a hoary colour, so have been named hoary marmots. They manage to survive quite happily in the alpine, largely by hibernating for 8 months of the year and largely for having a surprisingly varied array of food in such an inhospitable environment.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsWhen you hike in the alpine in Whistler and Garibaldi Provincial Park, you will often encounter unbelievably hardy and sometimes mangled looking trees.  Weathering high winds, freezing temperatures, deep snow and usually growing where most other things can't.  These weather battered trees are called krummholz.  Krummholz is a German derived word that comes from two words, krumm and holz. 

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsMount Garibaldi is the huge, potentially active volcano that Garibaldi Provincial Park is named after.  Mount Garibaldi also lends its name to the Garibaldi Ranges, the group of mountain ranges that fill Garibaldi Park.  A subsection of the Garibaldi Ranges is the Garibaldi Névé, which is the large icefield that stretches out along the east side of Mount Garibaldi.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsOverlord Mountain is the highest peak in the Fitzsimmons Range.  Overlord is surrounded by several mountains that collectively are named the Overlord Massif.  Massif is a term geologists use to refer to a group of mountains that tends to move as a unit while shifted by movements of the crust.  The Overlord Massif is dominated by Overlord Mountain which is impressively visible from Whistler Village, Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Mountain.

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Rubble Creek trailhead is the main access point for many of the best hikes and sights in Garibaldi Provincial Park.  Rubble Creek is located midway between Whistler and Squamish, just 2 kilometres from the Sea to Sky Highway.  The name Rubble Creek is evidently quite appropriate when you reach the parking lot and see the remnants of what must have been a terrific rock slide not that long ago.  Giant boulders fill the river and river valley that sharply ascends up the valley toward Garibaldi Lake and The Barrier.  

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Hike in Whistler Glossary of Hiking TermsThe Spearhead Range is a subsection of the Garibaldi Ranges that runs in an arc that connects Whistler Mountain and Blackcomb Mountain.  The Spearhead Range is effectively the brother of the Fitzsimmons Range which runs east from the summit of Whistler Mountain to Russet Lake.  The Spearhead Range covers the area on the north side or Blackcomb Mountain side of Fitzsimmons Creek. 

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Whistler Hiking Trails

The Sea to Sky Trail is a 180 kilometre multi-use trail that runs from Squamish to D'Arcy. The trail is still under construction in many parts, however, the amazing route through Whistler is finally in ...
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Skookumchuck Hot Springs, located two hours north of Whistler along the edge of the huge Lillooet River. The name Skookumchuck means "strong water" in the language of the Chinook people of the Pacific ...
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Brew Lake is beautiful mountain lake just a short drive south of Whistler and is relatively unknown and seldom hiked. Laying at the base of Mount Brew, Brew Lake lays in a massive alpine valley of enormous erratics.  ...
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The short, scenic and easy hiking trail to Rainbow Falls is located just a short, half kilometre from the Rainbow Lake or Rainbow Trail trailhead. The trail begins by ascending into deep forest and the trail ...
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Best Hiking by Month

Joffre Lakes Provincial Park, if you don't mind the drive is possibly the nicest snowshoe trail you could try in January.  It is only moderately difficult and ...
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February continues to be great for snowshoeing in and around Whistler.  The days slowly get longer, but the temperatures stay consistently cold.  Expect several ...
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August hiking in Whistler definitely has the most consistently great, hot weather.  You can feel the rare pleasure of walking across a glacier shirtless ...
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Hiking in Whistler in October is often unexpectedly stunning.  The days are much shorter and colder but the mountains are alive with colour from the fall ...
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