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 winds left, right, up and down constantly.  21 Mile Creek, always on your right can be either seen or heard as you hike through beautiful forest to the somewhat hidden Rainbow Falls. 

  • Short trail through beautiful forest to hidden falls
  • Much quieter than most other trails
  • Easy to bike or walk to from Whistler Village
  • Trail is always winding up & down, never boring
  • Great to see on the way to the Flank Trail or Rainbow Lake
  • Rainbow Park is great to see and close by
  • The falls are not very big or impressive
  • Tricky to get a nice view of the falls
  • Not a lot to see on the short trail
  • Nice to see, but not a must see

Whistler Hiking Trails

Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerAlexander Falls  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  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Park  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerHelm Creek  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyJoffre Lakes  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyKeyhole Hot Springs  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  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerPanorama Ridge  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerParkhurst Ghost Town  Hiking Trail ModerateRainbow Falls  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRainbow Lake  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyRing Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRusset Lake  Whistler Hiking Trail EasySea to Sky Trail  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSkookumchuck Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSloquet Hot Springs  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlySproatt  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerTaylor Meadows  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyTrain Wreck  Hiking Trail Hard - Whistler TrailsWedgemount Lake  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerWhistler Mountain

Hike in Whistler Glossary

Hike in Whistler GlossaryThe Barrier  Hike in Whistler GlossaryBears  Hike in Whistler GlossaryCoast Mountains  Hike in Whistler GlossaryErratic  Hike in Whistler GlossaryThe Fissile  Hike in Whistler GlossaryFitzsimmons Range  Hike in Whistler GlossaryGaribaldi Ranges  Hike in Whistler GlossaryGaribaldi Volcanic Belt  Hike in Whistler GlossaryHoary Marmot  Hike in Whistler GlossaryMount Garibaldi  Hike in Whistler GlossaryOverlord  Hike in Whistler GlossaryRubble Creek  Hike in Whistler GlossarySpearhead Range

21 Mile Creek begins, 8 kilometres away as it drains from Rainbow Lake, making its way eventually to the River of Golden Dreams, before finally draining into Green Lake north of Whistler Village.  A couple minutes into the Rainbow Trail and you come to a fork in the path. You can take either path as they rejoin further up the trail, however taking the right fork is more scenic and only a little more of a steep climb. A second fork in the trail appears a couple minutes later again, and once again taking the right fork is better. You will then come to a small trail sign indicating "Rainbow Falls". This short trail takes you to the little oasis that Rainbow Falls flows into.

After seeing Rainbow Falls, there are a couple more nice vantage points just a short hike further up the Rainbow Trail.  If you backtrack from the falls and rejoin the Rainbow Trail, you will zig-zag up some short switchbacks, before coming out to the gravel access road to the water treatment building. Here you will find a nice mapboard showing the Rainbow Trail and some of the connecting trails.  This section of trail overlaps with the 40 kilometre, Rainbow Sproatt Flank Trail, so you will see some "Flank Trail" signs as well as Rainbow Lake signs.  If you follow the Flank Trail as it ascends past the water treatment building on its right side, you will quickly come to the beautiful bridge across 21 Mile Creek. This is a great vantage point over this very scenic creek. The Flank Trail continues for several kilometres beyond this bridge, eventually coming out near Ancient Cedars, well north of Whistler Village.

Rainbow Falls TrailheadThe trailhead is a short 15 minute drive from Whistler Village. There is parking at the Rainbow Trail, trailhead as well as Rainbow Park just a couple hundred metres further up Alta Lake Road. At the trailhead you will see an excellent map-board indicating the trails in front of you. There are no signs to Rainbow Falls and you will just see signs for Rainbow Lake, Flank Trail and Madeley Lake. To find Rainbow Falls you just follow the Rainbow Lake trail from the trailhead for about a half kilometre until you reach the water treatment building (Rainbow Lake is Whistler's water source).  Just before the building the trail forks.

Rainbow Falls - Hike in Whistler

Rainbow Falls Trail Map

The trailhead parking area to Rainbow Falls is the same as for Rainbow Lake and one of many access points to the Flank Trail.  If you are driving from Alpine, a neighbourhood north of Whistler Village, you will find the parking area/trailhead on your right.  There is room for about 20 cars to park and you rarely find it full.  Be careful in the winter as this area is packed with snow and slopes down a bit.  You may be able to drive in, but not be able to back out easily.  Keep that in mind and park in a way that allows you to get out easily.  There is an excellent trailhead map of the area and you can get an idea of further places to hike beyond the short Rainbow Falls trek.  The Rainbow Falls side trail is somewhat easy to miss as it is just a tiny sign fairly low to the ground.  Follow the Rainbow Trail and bear right at the two obvious forks in the trail.  Signs do not indicate where the falls are, but there are several orange trail markers on the trees on the way.  Rainbow Falls are found before and to the right of the water treatment building and if you emerge here, you have passed the falls.  The Flank Trail runs here, up and to the right, past the treatment building.  The Flank Trail also connects further up the Rainbow Trail on the left.  

Rainbow Falls Trail Map - Hike in Whistler

Trailhead & Parking Directions to Rainbow Falls

Parking & Trailhead DirectionsRainbow Falls is well withing walking and biking distance from Whistler Village. You simply walk the Valley Trail down the end of Lorimer Road, the to Rainbow Park. From there it is just a 10 minute walk away. Driving directions to trailhead: Zero your odometer at Village Gate Boulevard(in Whistler Village), drive north on Highway 99.  At 3.8km turn left onto Alpine Way, then at the next stop sign turn left onto Rainbow Drive.  Continue straight until at 6.8km you will see the trailhead sign, "Rainbow Trail" on your right, half buried in snow most of the winter.  There is room for several cars to park, but be careful as if the parking are is packed with snow, you may be able to get in, but not be able to get out easily.  Keep that in mind and park in a way that allows you to get out easily.  Hike up the Rainbow Trail and to reach Rainbow Falls, bear right at the two obvious forks in the trail.  Signs do not indicate where the falls are, but there are several orange trail markers on the trees on the way.  Rainbow Falls are found before the water treatment building and the beautiful bridge over the river is just after the treatment building. 

More Great Hiking Around Rainbow Falls

The Rainbow Sproatt Flank Trail overlaps and crosses the Rainbow Trail for half a kilometre.  Following the Flank Trail to the right takes you to a very scenic bridge over 21 Mile Creek.  Following the Flank Trail to the left leads you to a steady ascent for 400 metres along the Rainbow Lake trail to the trail turnoff to the Flank Trail.  The Flank Trail from here quickly ascends through more deep forest and finally after 15 minutes opens up and flattens out.  The views become beautiful and trail less tiring. Whistler Mountain, Blackcomb Mountain and Wedge Mountain all come dramatically into view and Alta Lake appears far below.  Just steps from the trail take you to pristine, snowy outcrops, perfect for taking in the view on a sunny day.. and with most of the Flank Trail south facing, sun will always be facing you over Whistler. Rainbow Lake is one of the original hiking trails in Whistler that has existed well before Whistler was called Whistler. The 8 kilometre trail is challenging though beautiful as it passes through an impressively huge forest of giant trees.  There are several wonderful bridge crossings and crashing river views.  Rainbow Lake itself is surreal and beautiful.  An unnaturally bright, green meadow extends from one side of the lake and a field of starkly white erratics litter the landscape along the shores of the crystal clear lake.  Rainbow Lake is Whistler's water source so swimming, fishing, dogs and camping are not allowed.  There are, you will quickly notice upon reaching Rainbow Lake, that a trail continues past the lake then forks.  The right fork takes you to the right and to the popular, though difficult scramble to the summit of Rainbow Mountain.

We Rent the Best Hiking Gear at Bargain Prices!

Rent Hiking Gear in WhistlerBuying hiking gear is expensive and confusing. Let us take the time and trouble out of getting hiking gear for you. We have the best quality and highest rated hiking gear on the market, and bring it to you at bargain prices. We rent individual items or complete hiking and camping kits. Our complete kits for one or two people consist of everything you need to hike in Whistler except clothes, food and water! Reserve today and hike into paradise! Whether you are short one backpack for your group or need to fully equip everyone, we have you covered. We rent all the best, highest rated hiking gear you will need to enjoy hiking in and around Whistler and Garibaldi Provincial Park. We are proud to offer the best gear at the best prices. Fully equip yourself with backpackstentssleeping bagssleeping pads, sleeping pillows, complete cooking stove systems(stove, fuel, pot, cup, fork, spoon and coffee press), first aid kits, camp towels, knife and trekking poles. All you have to bring is food, water and clothes! We put all the fun back into hiking and remove the boring and expensive parts.

Rent Hiking Gear Whistler and Vancouver

We will deliver your full set of hiking gear, packed and ready to hike. You then hit the trail into paradise for a night.. or two.. or more, call us when you get home and we will pick up everything. You don't have to worry about figuring out what to pack or buying expensive equipment. We bring the best to you and at bargain prices. Why? Because we love Whistler, love hiking, love camping and we are passionate about hiking in Whistler. We will do everything in our power to make you have the most amazing hiking and camping trip of your life. And it starts with getting you the best gear, prepacked and delivered to you, without you having to spend a fortune buying gear. You can rent individual items or entire hiking/camping kits. Whatever your need, we have what you need to get you on the trail! Have a look at what we have to rent here!

Whistler Hiking Trails

Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerAlexander Falls  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  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Park  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerHelm Creek  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyJoffre Lakes  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyKeyhole Hot Springs  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  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerPanorama Ridge  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerParkhurst Ghost Town  Hiking Trail ModerateRainbow Falls  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRainbow Lake  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyRing Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerRusset Lake  Whistler Hiking Trail EasySea to Sky Trail  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSkookumchuck Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSloquet Hot Springs  Moderate/Hard Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlySproatt  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerTaylor Meadows  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyTrain Wreck  Hiking Trail Hard - Whistler TrailsWedgemount Lake  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerWhistler Mountain

 Hike in Whistler GlossaryThe Barrier  Hike in Whistler GlossaryBears  Hike in Whistler GlossaryCoast Mountains  Hike in Whistler GlossaryErratic  Hike in Whistler GlossaryThe Fissile  Hike in Whistler GlossaryFitzsimmons Range  Hike in Whistler GlossaryGaribaldi Ranges  Hike in Whistler GlossaryHoary Marmot  Hike in Whistler GlossaryMount Garibaldi  Hike in Whistler GlossaryOverlord  Hike in Whistler GlossaryRubble Creek  Hike in Whistler GlossarySpearhead Range

Hike in Whistler Glossary

The 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 ...
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The 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).  ...
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Erratic 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 ...
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Overlord Mountain is the highest peak in the Fitzsimmons Range.  Overlord is surrounded by several mountains that collectively are named the Overlord Massif.  ...
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Whistler Hiking Trails

The Rainbow Trail is a convenient and popular trail near Whistler Village that takes you to Rainbow Lake as well as the Flank Trail, Rainbow Falls, Hanging Lake, Madeley Lake, Beverly Lake, Rainbow ...
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Ancient Cedars is a nice, easy/moderate 2.5 kilometre(1.6 mile) hiking trail on the far side of Cougar Mountain, just 10.8 kilometres north of Whistler Village. A small, untouched grove of huge western ...
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Cheakamus Lake is a wonderfully relaxing way to get in the wilderness easily and quickly from Whistler Village. The trail begins on the far side of Whistler Mountain, 8 kilometres from the Sea to Sky ...
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Black Tusk is the extraordinarily iconic and appropriately named mountain that can be seen from almost everywhere in Whistler.  The massive black spire of crumbling rock juts out of the earth in an incredibly ...
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