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Some days, when we feel suffocated by city life, we all find an escape. If you are in Vancouver, you get the advantage of endless trails for walking and hiking.
Located in the Burnaby Lake Regional Park, the Burnaby Lake trail offers a quick escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. It is a nature house with birds, wildlife, and easily accessible hike and walk trails.
1. Burnaby Lake
Even though the lake is large, most of the part of Burnaby Lake is marshland; therefore, there is less space for water activities.
1.1. Ecology Near Burnaby Lake
Burnaby Lake is a hub of ecology. You can find many plants, animals, and birds around Burnaby Lake.
This lake is heaven for Birdwatchers. Commonly found birds around the lake are sage thrasher, bald eagles, great blue herons, kingfishers, osprey, and green herons.
If you want to witness a nice bird-watching time, you can go to the viewing tower near Piper’s Spit. You can also find cougars, beavers, turtles, and ducks here.
As for vegetation, you can see waterlilies, deciduous trees, peat moss, bladderworts, and conifers. You can even find a special conifer loop on Burnaby Lake Trail.
If you go Canoeing or kayaking, don’t miss taking a closeup look at busy beavers, turtles feeding, and diving ducks in the marshland portion of Burnaby Lake.
1.2. Geography of Burnaby Lake
Burnaby Lake gets the water from many other lakes, such as Deer Lake. Creek Lake and Eagle Creek Lake empty into Burnaby Lake. Then, Burnaby Lake empties into Brunette River, which ultimately flows into the East and Fraser Rivers.
2. Burnaby Lake Regional Park
Burnaby Lake Regional Park is located in Burnaby, near Vancouver. With numerous activities, Burnaby Lake Park near Burnaby Mountain makes a perfect family recreational spot for Vancouver residents.
The Lake park has a lake and many easily accessible trails for running/walking/hiking Burnaby Lake Loop.
Burnaby Lake Park, Vancouver, offers fun and adventurous activities that will not dull your visit. The activities include:
You can reach Burnaby Lake Regional Park via public transit or car.
2.2.1. Public Transit –
If you are coming to Burnaby Lake Park from Vancouver, you get plenty of public transit options that leave you to either side of the lake, the south or the north.
You can use the Millennium line of Skytrain, which stops at Sperling Avenue and Burnaby intersection near Burnaby Lake Regional Park.
You can use either the Trans Canada highway (take the exit for Sprott Street) or Lougheed highway to reach the three main entries of Burnaby Lake Park: Piper Spit, Avalon Trail, or Cariboo Dam.
2.3. Major Attractions-
Burnaby is just not about nature and its ecology. You get to encounter a lot of attractions in this large lake park. Some of the attractions are as follows-
- Burnaby Equestrian Center (a 6km horseriding trail)
- Burnaby Lake Nature House ( near Piper Avenue)
- Burnaby Canoe and Kayak Club
- Burnaby Lake Rowing Pavilion( gives rowing training)
- Piper Spit Pier
- Butterfly Garden
- Wildlife Rescue Association
- Burnaby Lake Sports Complex with extended sports field (near Kensington Avenue)
2.4. Access Points
Burnaby Lake Regional Park has several access points from both sides, the north and the south. There are four main access points:
- Avalon Avenue entrance
- Burnaby Sports Complex entrance
- Piper Avenue entrance
- Glencairn Trailhead entrance
3. The Burnaby Lake Loop
The Burnaby Lake loop is 11 km long (approx), and this easy trail has minimal elevation and thus becomes perfect for daily walks or runs.
Burnaby Lake has a variety of trails with several access points and many smaller trails for short walks that branch from the main trail.
- You have to start hiking by moving south from the parking lot at Piper Avenue; walk south till you come to Burnaby Lake Nature House, which will be to your right side.
- After officially entering the trailhead, head to your south and walk till the next junction, then turn left at the junction. You will come across several short trails for hiking on this path; if you wish to stroll for a longer time, you can surely check these trails, too.
- Back to the main trail, you will come across Cariboo Dam. You must cross the Brunette River dam crossing and continue the trail to your left side on the lake’s south shore.
- Next, you will come across the gravel parking lot, from where you will converge to the Avalon trail on your right and cross the Burnaby Equestrian Center.
- After moving along the south shore for about 3.5 km, you will see the Wildlife Rescue Association to your left and move to the ending point at the parking lot of Burnaby Lake Rowing Pavilion.
- Continue your move on the Southshore trail; you need to cross Roberts Street and move straight before ending at a junction near Thomas Street. Turn right to the path parallel to the street, cross the ditch, run across Thomas Street, and turn to your left.
- When you turn left after crossing Thomas Street, you will see that the Pavillion trail has begun. Turn right on the next junction you come across and move to the north shore of the lake.
- After a few km, you will come back near the Burnaby Lake Nature House.
You can also check out the Brunette Headwaters Trail for hiking, which starts near Piper Avenue and falls to the north shore of the lake.
3.1 Things to Keep in Mind –
Before going to Burnaby Lake Trail, you must know some basic things. Let’s take a quick look at the following important points-
- Burnaby Lake Loop has trailed only for hiking, running, and walking, not cycling.
- Dogs are allowed on the Burnaby Lake trail, but you must put a leash on them. Also, there is no entry for dogs in the park’s picnic area.
- Burnaby Lake Park does not permit camping near any part of Burnaby Lake.
- This park allows hiking, walking, and rowing practices, a sports complex with large sports fields, canoeing, and swimming in the swimming pool.
4. Frequently Asked Questions
1. How long is the Burnaby Lake trail?
Ans. Burnaby Lake trail is approximately 11 km long and can easily be completed in 1.5-2 hours.
2. Is there an entry fee at Burnaby Lake Trail?
Ans. There is no entry fee to enter Burnaby Lake trail; however, you might have to spend a penny for other activities in Burnaby Lake Park.
3. Where can we park for Burnaby Lake Trail?
Ans. There is a parking lot at Piper’s Avenue entrance for the Burnaby Lake trail.
4. Is Burnaby Lake trail pet-friendly?
Ans. Yes, the Burnaby Lake trail is pet-friendly, but remember to put a leash on your pet if you want to enjoy walking or hiking in the Burnaby Lake loop. But dogs are not allowed in the picnic area.
5. Can we camp at Burnaby Lake?
Ans. No, you cannot camp at Burnaby Lake as camping is prohibited in Burnaby Lake Regional Park.
6. Can we swim in Burnaby Lake?
Ans. Burnaby Lake is a part of marshland. Thus, it is unfit to go and swim in it.
5. Final Thoughts
Burnaby Lake is popular for its ecology, hiking and walking trails, picnic area, and other activities.
Burnaby Lake Trail around Burnaby Mountain, a few minutes away from downtown Vancouver, has several hiking trails. Even the trails’ elevation is not much, making it ideal for families to hike for a short walk.
On one side, you get to witness nature and its beauty. In contrast, on the other hand, you also get the thrill of doing activities like kayaking, horseriding, rowing, and canoeing, all this in one place- Burnaby Lake Park.
So, the next time you wish for a quick nature getaway, visit Burnaby Lake Regional Park.