Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Hiking: Burnaby Lake

          We have some friends who are participating in a really unique family challenge- they have challenged themselves to cover 2015 KMs this year - 2015. As May is Friends and Family month they invited us along on their adventure- not only is it Friends and Family month but it was also friend Erin's birthday- perfect day for a hike. We headed to an area of the Lower Mainland that I have yet to explore- Burnaby Lake.

         In my opinion Burnaby is better known for it's shopping malls and condos than hiking- Burnaby lake is a bit of an anomaly. Located just off Highway 1 I didn't even know it existed- I always assumed the swath of trees we cruise past on our way out of town was in fact wind screen for warehouses- not the case. We were all pleasantly surprised to find basically a forest in the middle of the city- Burnaby Lake is the largest lake in the Lower Mainland- with over 10 KMs of trails, equestrian facilities, archery range as well as being adjacent to the Rugby club and sports fields.

         Home to an abundant amount of wildlife we encountered Canada Geese with their babies, turtles, slugs, Sandhill Cranes, Sand Pipers even a good sized frog. We saw lots of evidence of the beavers that call the park home but evidence was all we saw- no beavers in sight. With lots of explore this easy, flat hike kept the Littles engaged and going for the most part- a few falls and plenty of band aids ensured they did the entire loop mostly under their own steam.

         I will admit- the idea of hiking in Burnaby was not exactly my cup of tea- I balked at the idea that we would essentially be walking on sidewalks- I was convinced that this hike would indeed be just like Stanley Park- over run with tourists. I will be the first to admit I was wrong- Burnaby Lake is a little slice of heaven! The perfect easy hike for anyone- strollers and Grandparents alike- the 10 km loop is full of beautiful distractions as well as pit stops. The nature House features a butterfly garden and interpretive centre full of cool stuff like salamanders to engage visitors of all ages- along with well maintained washrooms. I would recommend this little oasis to anyone wanting an escape from the busy trails of downtown- oh and did I mention the free parking!

         We are so happy we got to be a part of our friend's 2015 in 2015 challenge- getting outside and hitting the trails is our jam!  Overall the entire day - including a stop at Deer Lake post 7-11 break- was 13.50 KMs hiked. Thank you Fowler Family for making us a part of May's Friends and Family Challenge- glad we could walk some Kilometers with you!

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