Hiking the Chief

After our trip to see Brandywine Falls, we stopped back at our Air BnB to eat dinner and to drop off the girls. Then, Connor and I decided to go see Shannon Falls and to hike prominent mountain in Squamish – the Stawamus Chief.

It was a 15-minute drive to the parking lot near the falls, so we made a quick run up to see Shannon Falls. Then, after confirming that there was no trail to hike to the top, we decided to cruise over to the trail head for the Chief. A guy at a store in town had told me it was a 30-45 minute hike up to the first peak, so we decided that 6:45 in the evening wasn’t too late to start our ascent.

The trail was really well-maintained with cross ties used to create dirt steps and well-made stairs anywhere that there wasn’t already some natural rock steps. About 45 minutes into our hike, we were only about half-way up, so we knew we were in for a slightly later evening than we had expected. As we neared the top, we passed someone who said that we had missed sunset, but I was resolute that we would still get a big payoff once we hit the top.

Once we cleared the tree line, we found permanent ladder-steps and chains to help us scale some steep rock faces. The experience was really cool for Connor who had never really hiked up a mountain before. We finally made our summit around 90 minutes into our hike, and the views were out of this world! The sun had dipped below the mountains to the west, but the colors on the horizon were still amazing. We took a lot of pictures and video after enjoying a little rest on the mountaintop. Then, we began to make our way down as it grew dark.

We tried to keep up with some other hikers who were hiking down in the dark to help us stay on the trail, but we did veer off a couple of times. Thankfully, Connor had brought a flashlight along, so we used that and my iPhone to light our way down. We finally made it down and were driving back to our home for the week around three hours after we started. All in all, the hike was really fun, and the views were amazing. The hike was definitely challenging, and I wouldn’t recommend it for anyone with small kids or who doesn’t have a decent level of stamina for hiking up around 2,000 feet on a two mile trail. Next time, we’ll definitely get an earlier start and take more water (we only had two water bottles). We hope to go back to hike the first peak again and to check out the other two peaks as well.


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