Squamish Hiking Trail RatingStawamus Chief is the mammoth rock face that towers over Squamish. Though hardly believable from looking at, the summit is a fairly easy, though very steep hike. In fact there are three peaks, South (First), Centre (Second), and North (Third). Each accessible from the single trailhead.  Growing in popularity as the newest brother to the Grouse Grind in Vancouver because there are quite a few stairs and considerable elevation gain.

  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProIncredible views from the top
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProEnjoyable, but very steep hike
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProFamous rock climbing destination
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProLots of terrain to wander at the top
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProConvenient trailhead on Hwy 99
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProBusy, but organized trails
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProDog friendly hiking trails
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProFree access & free parking
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ProNice campsites at the trailhead
  • Squamish Hiking Trails ConNo camping at the top

Sea to Sky Hiking Trails

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Stawamus Chief, more often referred to as The Chief, is well know as one of the largest granite monoliths in the world.  The Chief attracts rock climbers from around the world to its many incredible climbing routes up this granite dome that towers over 700 metres(2297 feet) above Howe Sound.  The Chief covers an area roughly three square kilometres and the original granite dome is fractured into several separate summits.  The three main summits are the First Peak, Second Peak and Third Peak.  All are accessible by the park's maintained hiking trail network.  First Peak is 1.5 kilometres long, with an elevation gain of 540 metres.  Second Peak is 1.7 kilometres from the trailhead and with an elevation gain of 590 metres.  Third Peak is 1.8 kilometres from the trailhead and has an elevation gain of 630 metres.  Another notable summit, just north of Third Peak is the Zodiac Summit.  No maintained trail leads to the Zodiac Summit, though finding the route to it is not too difficult.  The Zodiac Summit is a quiet oasis in this often bustling park.  Most hikers head straight to First Peak, though all three summits get a considerable amount of hiker traffic on an average summer day.  Zodiac Summit remains off the radar for almost all visitors to the park. 

Along with hiking and climbing, Stawamus Chief Provincial Park has quite a large campsite adjacent to the start of the hike.  The campsite has 16 drive-in sites and 58 walk-in sites.  Though the campsite is only operational from mid April to mid October, outside these dates you can walk in and camp in the campground for free.  When operational, the fee for camping is $10 per person, per night  Cold water taps are available in the campground as well as several outhouses throughout the campground.  There are no shower facilities in the park.  Dogs a welcome in Stawamus Chief Provincial Park, though they must be on a leash at all times.

Stawamus Chief Hiking Map

Stawamus Chief from the Squamish Marina

Stawamus Chief Trail Stairs

Stawamus Chief Trail Stairs

Stawamus Chief View

Stawamus Chief View

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Stawamus Chief View

Stawamus Chief View

Getting to Stawamus Chief

Driving Directions to The ChiefFrom Cleveland Avenue and Highway 99 in Squamish (McDonalds is on this corner), drive south for about 2 minutes and watch for signs on your left.  You can either park at the Stawamus Chief trailhead or the Shannon Falls trailhead.  Both are close to each other but the Shannon Falls is much better for a day hike if you want to see both.  Seeing both only takes a few minutes more than hiking just The Chief.  If you are planning to camp overnight then The Chief trailhead is better to park as that is where the campsites are.

Driving Map to Stawamus Chief

Sea to Sky Hiking Trails

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