Snowshoeing on Mt. Seymour

A couple of weekends ago, B and I made good on another item on our Vancouver to-do list – snowshoeing.

Mount SeymourThere are three local mountains just over the bridge where Vancouverites can go to get their fill of winter sports – Cypress, Grouse and Seymour.

We opted to head to Mt. Seymour – it’s the closest mountain to us, and has a shuttle and an easy-to-navigate website.

I learned a few things on this excursion:

1)      Snowshoeing is harder work than it looks! About 54 cm of fresh snow had fallen in the 48-hours prior to our arrival on the mountain. The snow was wet and heavy and the terrain was pretty contoured. Climbing hills is difficult for me on a good day, let alone with a pair of sleds strapped to my feet. This made for a pretty awesome and enjoyable workout!

2)      I’ve never been so appreciative of layers. The temperature when we arrived on the mountain was about -2 – so, by no means near the frigid temperatures I’m used to back in Ontario. BUT, it definitely is a different kind of cold here on the west coast – it’s damp. Couple that with some huge heavy snowflakes and the cold soaks you right through, unlike the dry -40 we’ve been known to see in Kitchener-Waterloo. This makes layering up super important!

3)      I’ve never actually experienced true silence, until now. At a couple of points during our trek we’d spontaneously stop walking and just experience the truest state of peace and quiet. I’d literally describe it as a stillness, where everything around us seemed to be frozen in time. No chatter, no humming of laptops, or wireless routers, no dogs barking, no traffic. Everything silent. For me it was a remarkable way to reengage with nature.

4)      Snowshoeing was awesome, but I really want to try skiing. At a couple points throughout the circuit, the snowshoe trails cross over the ski hills. Being surrounded by ski culture really made me want to try my hand at something a little more intense.

Unfortunately, it was a rather cloudy one on the day we went so we didn’t have much of a view but I’d definitely like to return on a clear day.

In all, the cost was pretty reasonable too. Here’s a breakdown per person:

Bus ride (return trip): $5
Seymour Shuttle Bus (return trip): $12
Snowshoe rental and trail pass: $27 (only $9 if you have your own snowshoes!)