Whyte Lake – a West Vancouver hiking trail near Horseshoe Bay
Closest City: West Vancouver
Dogs Allowed: Yes
Camping Allowed: No
4 X 4 Needed: No
Class: Short Hike / Half Day
Trail Distance (return): 10 km via Seaview Walk; 6 km from Westport Road
Hiking Time (return): 3 hrs via Seaview Walk; 1.5 hrs from Westport Road
Average Grade: 7.5%
Elevation Gain: 346 m
Highest Point: 310 m
Directions to Trailhead
From Seaview Walk (10km trail)
From Westport Road (6km trail)
The trail up to Whyte Lake is a great hike in all seasons. In the summer it is a nice, short trip up to a lake you can swim in. During the fall and spring the thick tree cover provides a nice respite from the rain. Wintertime the trail is well-trodden making it easy to find your way up with snowshoes or microspikes.
This West Vancouver hike can be done as a 6km round-trip starting from Westport Road, or a 10km hike starting near the Gleneagles Golf Club near Horseshoe Bay hiking the Seaview Walk before branching off to the Whyte Lake trail. Both ways gain around 300 metres. It is an easy- moderate level hike, can be accomplished by beginner hikers looking for a bit of a challenge, but challenging enough for intermediate hikers to still get a good workout for their lungs and thighs.
The hike is dog-friendly and transit-accessible.
From the Seaview Walk trailhead you enter a flat 2km path popular with local dog-walkers and joggers. This trail overlooks Eagle Harbour and out to the ocean with Passage Island in view.
After 2km you reach the first fork. Go left for the Whyte Lake trail. Going down on the right brings you down to the Westport Road trailhead.
After passing under the bridge you will come to an old road. Go right here.
Just before the water tank go left up the gravel path.
Once you reach the next water tank, follow the signpost and go right up the narrow path into the forest.
From here just stay on the trail to Whyte Lake by following the sign posts. At the first junction go left along the fence down towards the creek and continue following the trail. It won’t branch off again until you reach the lake at the top.
Take a breather at the big bridge crossing over Nelson Creek. It is very beautiful and lush here. The perfect spot for capturing that stunning temperate rainforest photo with the low waterfall flowing softly.
Once you’ve reached the sign post at the top you can go right along the narrow short path over to the lake. You can also continue straight along the boardwalk to reach the other side of the lake with the rope swing.
At the end of the boardwalk you will see an outhouse. Go right to get to the rope swing on Whyte Lake. Going left will take you on to the Baden Powell trail.
This hike is an out-an-back trail. Retrace your steps to get back to the trailhead.
Note there is no cell phone reception once you enter the forest. You regain it later but it’s very spotty once near the lake. Make sure with any hike, no matter the length or proximity to residential areas, take precautions to ensure your safety. Linked here is a guide by our amazing North Shore Search and Rescue team of the 10 essentials to always carry with you.
Trail Status Updates (by page admin)
March 25, 2017 – Trail is completely clear of snow. The trail is muddy. Lake is completely thawed.
January 14, 2017 – Trail is icy with compact snow about 50 m after you enter forested area. Lake is frozen solid and covered with snow.