Garibaldi Park Whistler A to Z: Green LakeGreen 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.

Whistler & Garibaldi Hiking

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  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyFlank Trail  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Park  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerHelm Creek  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyJane Lakes  Joffre Lakes Hike in Whistler in SeptemberJoffre 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  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  Whistler Hiking Trail EasySea to Sky Trail  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSkookumchuck Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSloquet Hot Springs  Sproatt East  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerSproatt West  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerTaylor Meadows  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyTrain Wreck  Hiking Trail Hard - Whistler TrailsWedgemount Lake  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerWhistler Mountain

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Compared to the other lakes around Whistler Village, Green Lake is quite large at well over one kilometre long and has an average width of 650 metres.  Because of its large size, Green Lake doesn't warm up much in the summer and is not known as a swimming lake as Lost Lake, Alta Lake, Alpha Lake and Nita Lake are.  With the railway line on one side of the lake and the Sea to Sky Highway on the other, Green Lake has relatively few houses along the shore.  Nicklaus North Golf Course sits at the end closest to Whistler Village, along with Whistler's airport.  The airport consists of about three float planes docked at a small wharf.  The beautiful Valley Trail runs along the southern shore of Green Lake, past the airport, then veers right, through the golf course and on to Lost Lake. Green Lake is fed by Fitzsimmons Creek and The River of Golden Dreams.  Both water bodies figure prominently in Whistler's history.  The River of Golden Dreams runs from Rainbow Park on Alta Lake and is a lovely, meandering river that is a popular route via canoe, kayak, paddleboard, and most frequently hordes of small inflatable boats.  The five kilometre distance between Alta Lake and Green Lake, makes it an always entertaining journey.  Where The River of Golden Dreams is a slow, meandering, relaxing river, Fitzsimmons Creek is a fast, crashing torrent of water descending from Fitzsimmons Glacier high up in the mountains.

Fitzsimmons Creek in Whistler

Fitzsimmons Creek cuts between Blackcomb Mountain and Whistler Mountain, down through Whistler Village and finally into Green Lake.  Fitzsimmons Creek is the reason Green Lake has such a dazzling colour.  Glaciers have tiny particles of rock in them, that when released into a lake tend to remain suspended throughout the lake reflecting light. 

The image below is your first glimpse of Green Lake if you arrived via the River of Golden Dreams.  Whistler's Valley Trail runs along the south end of Green Lake just a few metres from this picture.  The Valley Trail then connects to the networks of hiking and biking trails around Lost Lake.  From Lost Lake you can connect to the Sea to Sky Trail and/or the Green Lake Loop Trail and hike or bike around the beautiful back side of Green Lake all the way to Parkhurst and beyond.

Green Lake Whistler 33

This is the type of view of get of Green Lake over and over as you ascend up the back side of the lake.  The Green Lake Loop Trail is the original trail built decades ago and the Sea to Sky Trail was just built a decade ago and overlaps much of the Green Lake Loop Trail.  The Sea to Sky Trail is a considerable improvement on the old Green Lake Loop Trail, however as it smoothed out the erratic and narrow old trail and widened it as well as layered on gravel to make it luxuriously smooth and dry.

Green Lake in Whistler

The image below is from the Sea to Sky Highway viewpoint overlooking Green Lake and Blackcomb Mountain beyond.

Green Lake Sea to Sky Viewpoint

Green Lake Hiking Trails

Green Lake Hiking TrailsAs a destination in Whistler for hiking, Green Lake goes almost entirely unnoticed. A remarkable fact considering the extraordinary array of both established and unestablished trails running, seemingly endlessly throughout the edges of this massive lake. Any trails you do find are only ever used by bikes or the occasional fisherman. There are three reasons for the huge number of trails running around the lake. First, the lake and its surrounds are beautiful, sensationally beautiful. Second, there once was a small town that existed on the far side of Green Lake for decades called Parkhurst.  Now a ghost town consisting of just a couple crumbling structures and numerous antique curiosities. The third reason is the nature of the forest around the lake. It is incredibly dry. The trees, the ground.  Much of the surrounding forest is comprised of scattered, large trees over beautiful hillsides with a dry feeling carpet of what looks like moss, and possibly is. This allows for hiking in almost any direction and a wonderful surface to put up a tent.

Parkhurst Ghost Town Tent

Parkhurst Ghost Town can be reached in a number of ways.  By boat is a fun and direct way to get there.  Green Lake Park is just across from Parkhurst and just a 2 minute canoe/kayak ride away.  All you have to do to find Parkhurst is aim for the huge, abandoned log loader tractor perched on the edge of the lake.  Park your boat there and a trail takes you across the train tracks and up to the ruins of Parkhurst.  Don't expect too much, however there is one standing house that is artfully painted with a beautiful and haunting looking blue face.  If you wander the trails around the house you will find some other interesting curiosities, such as an abandoned truck from the 50's and a similarly disintegrating corvette from a similar era.

Green Lake Pier

Parkhurst Ghost Town Dock Green Lake

Parkhurst Ridge View of Green Lake

Parkhurst Whistler Map v13

More Hiking Details for Parkhurst Ghost Town

Two Fantastic Books About BC Hiking!

Scrambles in SW BCA Passion for MountainsHere are two excellent books on hiking and geology of British Columbia.  Matt Gunn's Scrambles in Southwest British Columbia includes the various routes to the summit of Wedge Mountain as well as summit routes to the neighbouring peaks, Weart, Cook, Parkhurst and Rethel.  Mount Weart is the second highest mountain in Garibaldi Park and is located just north of Wedge Mountain, separated by the Wedge-Weart Col.  Published in 2005, Scrambles in Southwest British Columbia is still the best guide in print or online.  A Passion for Mountains by Kathryn Bridge is a fascinating look at Don and Phyllis Munday's prolific exploration of the mountains in BC.  Based out of Vancouver, they were dominant figures of the climbing community in the early 1900's.  In 1923 they visited their friend Neal Carter in Alta Lake(Whistler) and explored the mountains around the valley.. many for the first time!

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Ablation Zone: the lower altitude region of a glacier where there is a net loss of ice mass due to melting, sublimation, evaporation, ice calving or ...
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Every unusual phenomenon in the forest seems to have a name, but one natural work of art seems to be without a commonly used name.  Big trees with ...
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Bushwhack is a term often used in Canada and the United States to refer to hiking off-trail where no trail exists.  Literally means 'bush' and 'whack'.  To ...
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The Table is an extraordinary flat-topped mountain located in Garibaldi Park just one kilometre south of Garibaldi Lake.  Sometimes reflexively referred to as ...
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Moraines are glacially deposited ridges of debris that accumulate at the sides or terminus of a glacier.  Lateral moraines form at the sides of glaciers ...
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Along Whistler’s Valley Trail near Rainbow Park you come across some impressively unusual trees. Unlike most other Whistler trees with straight trunks and ...
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The Cordilleran Ice Sheet covered most of north-west North America for much of the last 2.6 million years.  At the Last Glacial Maximum during the Last ...
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Armchair Glacier is one of the many easily identifiable mountain features around Whistler.  Along with Wedge Mountain and Black Tusk, Armchair Glacier has a ...
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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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November in Whistler is when the temperatures plummet and the first heavy snow falls in the alpine and often in Whistler Village.  The hiking opportunities become ...
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December hiking in Whistler is mainly done on snowshoes, though if it hasn't snowed for a few days, trails to Whistler Train Wreck and Rainbow Falls can ...
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There are plenty of beautiful and free snowshoe trails in Whistler and Garibaldi Provincial Park.  From the surreal paintings of Whistler Train Wreck to ...
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Whistler and Garibaldi Park Hiking Gear Rental

Whistler & Garibaldi Hiking

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  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyFlank Trail  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Lake  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerGaribaldi Park  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerHelm Creek  Moderate Hiking Trail Whistler Dog FriendlyJane Lakes  Joffre Lakes Hike in Whistler in SeptemberJoffre 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  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  Whistler Hiking Trail EasySea to Sky Trail  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSkookumchuck Hot Springs  Easy Hiking Trail WhistlerSloquet Hot Springs  Sproatt East  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerSproatt West  Moderate Hiking Trail WhistlerTaylor Meadows  Whistler Hiking Trail EasyTrain Wreck  Hiking Trail Hard - Whistler TrailsWedgemount Lake  Pay Use Hiking Trail WhistlerWhistler Mountain

  Winter Hiking WhistlerJanuary  Winter Hiking WhistlerFebruary  Spring Hiking WhistlerMarch  Spring Hiking WhistlerApril  Spring Hiking WhistlerMay  Summer Hiking WhistlerJune  Summer Hiking WhistlerJuly  Summer Hiking WhistlerAugust  Fall Hiking WhistlerSeptember  Fall Hiking WhistlerOctober  Fall Hiking WhistlerNovember  Winter Hiking WhistlerDecember

Russet Lake is a surreal little paradise that lays at the base of The Fissile, in Garibaldi Provincial Park. The Fissile is the strikingly bronze mountain visible from Whistler Village.  From the Village ...
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Madeley Lake is a beautiful, remote mountain lake hidden high up in the Callaghan Valley.  From Whistler Village expect to take 40 minutes to drive there.  You can drive directly to the lake, however the ...
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Whistler has an absurd number of wonderful and free hiking trails and Parkhurst Ghost Town certainly ranks as the most unusual and interesting. Parkhurst was a little logging town perched on the edge of Green ...
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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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