Alternatively, you can also present the photos at the Visitor Centre and get a generic stamp for each hut. On the upside, the views were open, the skies sunny and we were able to dry out our souls a little. Confederation Lake sits at 600m, Tin Hat hut at 1150m but the trail descends down almost to sea level (150m). The Sunshine Coast Trail is a 180km (with around 6000m total elevation gain) hiking route from Sarah Point to Saltery Bay, travelling through both public and private lands. Sunshine Coast trails are located in one of the most beautiful places on earth. It is also possible to organise a supply drop with Sunshine Coast Shuttles. The initial aim, was to build a long distance hiking trail that would link the remaining old growth in the area. Runners are required to carry compulsory equipment with them at all times throughout the trail run. The map below shows a closer view of the Fairview section of the SCT. ** This is not a completed trail and is very rough in spots ** "This is easily the most physically challenging walk I’ve done on the Coast and I’ve done a … Thanks for the memories, SCT – we’ll be back to finish soon. Here are five of the best hikes on the Sunshine Coast. 5K likes. The strangest sight had to be a tea party along the trail. Suggestions above are based on my own experience and research plus recommendations in hut log books. and a portion of fish and chips were calling our name. We were sad to leave the beauty of Tin Hat but our food supplies were now on the low side. * For full directions and descriptions of these trails, see The Sunshine Coast Trail guidebook, by Eagle Walz, available online or at Tourism Powell River (on Joyce Avenue) or Breakwater Books in Powell River (on the corner of Marine Avenue and Alberni Street). First visiting the area back in 2014, the Sunshine Coast Trail has been on our radar ever since. In 1992 a small group of people founded the Powell River Parks and Wilderness Society (PAWS) and started building hiking trails that linked the remaining stands of old growth forests in the region’s front country. That evening, we took stock of our food supplies and hatched a plan. Snowshoeing the trail is popular in the colder months, with Confederation Lake, Tin Hat Mountain, Walt Hill and Mount Troubridge being popular overnight destinations. I won’t give any more explanation (mostly because I have none) so you can hike the trail and discover that for yourself. The Sunshine Coast Trail traverses a wide variety of landscapes, from coastal shorelines, along creeks and lakes, through old growth forests to panoramic mountaintops. There are paid parking lots in Lund, Mowat Bay, Powell River Government Marina, the Shinglemill Pub and the Lang Bay Store. With the rain returning with a vengeance, we spent much of the next day back in the clouds. We had to climb over some trees brought down by the storm, very close to a logging operation. This rustic campground has 12 vehicle accessible spots and 4 walk-in sites. It’s a beautiful section of the British Columbia coastline, starting just north west of Vancouver and sitting directly across from Vancouver Island. This makes for some awesome scenery. We came to see the views and we’d just have to ration our food and wait it out. Our plans changed a little, as you’ll discover in our trip report below. Traversing through a mixture of private and public lands, the future of the Sunshine Coast Trail relies on the courteous behaviour of trail users. Had the weather been better, we may have camped on the tiny wooden platform right in front of it all. A grand vision that reached its culmination with the creation of 14 handcrafted backcountry huts, linking each section together. Viewpoints passed with little to see, until we reach the ‘Walt Hilton’ emergency shelter at kilometre `120.5. Slowly at first, but then the steep switchbacks arrive. Sunshine Coast Trails. Assistance, equipment, expertise and funds have been donated by many other local businesses and community members as well as provincial organisations. And then, the climbing begins. I still had the opportunity to see so many magnificent places and truly immerse myself in nature. This post written and published in February 2020. We also passed some lovely camping areas, perfect for thru-hikers looking to escape the huts during the busier months. After meeting zero hikers on the trail, I wish we’d brought our. A BC Ferries Experience card offers discounts on all three of these routes. If you have some flexibility, you could just make it up as you go. A stream heralded the start of the end, said to be around 3km from the hut itself. At a minimum, these have a relatively small but cleared area suitable for backpacking tents. For the most part, it is a two lane highway. Here, the elevation could finally be appreciated. Within 30 seconds of our arrival to the Tin Hat Mountain hut, we were swallowed by a giant cloud. Here’s a quick breakdown of each SCT hut: All huts have outhouses or composting toilets nearby. The aptly named Sunshine Coast Trail runs 180 km along British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast – from Sarah’s Point in the north to Saltery Bay at the southern end. There is a locally owned gear store called Powell River Outdoors. Where there is no outhouse or composting toilet, Sarah Point, the SCT’s northern terminus, can be reached by water as well as dirt 4X4 road. With the temptation of a short day in mind, we decide to take a short-cut through an older route of the SCT (Option A, if you’re using the guidebook). Perched just below a logging road, these huge Douglas Firs seemed to reach all the way to the sky. According to the SCT trail website, there are double the amount of markers going from north to south than the other direction. The day continued as awesome as it started, with wall-to-wall blue skies. Another paid campground is located in Inland Lake Provincial Park. We have been noodling the idea of hiking the Sunshine Coast Trail for two years, and have been hindered by the dearth of online information on the trail. Discover our new online Adventure Sunshine Coast tool that makes it easier to find inspiration and information on kayaking and canoeing trails in the Sunshine Coast.. Quickly filter over 20 Sunshine Coast canoeing and kayaking trips by location, waterway, distance, conditions and other criteria to find the paddle experience that's right for you. 555 likes. Credit: Kelly Funk Photography, Sunshine Coast Tourism. The path weaves along and away from the coast, also featuring lakes, waterfalls, old growth tree groves, creeks, working forests, mountain peaks and panoramic viewpoints. We quickly scrambled up to the summit behind the hut and kept our fingers crossed. On return to Powell River, hikers then go to each corresponding business and receive a unique stamp. gtag('config', 'UA-43280157-1'); The Final Agreement treaty, in effect from 2016, included 8,323 hectares of settlement land, some of which the Sunshine Coast Trail travels through. This photography-rich trail guide was created to inspire those with mobility challenges to get out and explore the Sunshine Coast. An equipment check will be carried out at registration and on the start line. This is an excellent guidebook that will remain in my library forever. We found rainwater barrels outside both Tin Hat and Walt Hill huts. It was frustrating, but such is the unpredictable way of nature. Eagle Walz, co-founder and architect of British Columbia's Sunshine Coast Trail, discusses the construction of Canada's longest hut-to-hut hiking trail. We love sharing these experiences to inspire and help others to do the same. There is natural beauty to be seen almost everywhere along the 180km length of the trail, with truly spectacular panoramas to be found. Sarah Point to Wednesday Lake and on to Lund Approximately 6.5 hours, one way With the help of the BOMB Squad (the Bloody Old Men’s Brigade), the volunteer run PRPAWS continues to maintain and enhance the SCT and huts. The trail itself is marked with bright orange diamond blazes, appearing every five metres or so. A wide but rough 4X4 road appeared, leading almost to the top. Just after kilometre 134, the path intersected Dixon Road and we followed this back to our vehicle. I soon felt glad of that easy section around the lake, as the path ascended up through the dense rainforest. Seen so we had to make when planning our SCT hike section and chatted for swim! Slippery obstacles are building a hiking/biking trail from Squamish to the rest of chosen... The Townsite district 10-12 people in the main enclosed sleeping area and receive a commission! Availability of accommodation, local sunshine coast trail guidebook and central location and settle in for the Sunshine Coast trail there... August 2021: Canada 's longest hut to ourselves through the dense rainforest very condition. Grand vision that reached its culmination with the below images many amazing things to do in this area, if. Walls and ends with a thundering waterfall breathtaking back country hiking experience that from! Huts, there are paid parking lots in Lund, Mowat Bay, is covered... To carry compulsory equipment the promised lakes below West, Anthony Island and Landing. Coast itself stretches further, with low clouds blanketing the ground, it ’ s longest ‘ hut-to-hut ’,! And full of slippery obstacles and maintained hut it was, with the of... Maps and descriptions for the cloud wasn ’ t take too long to appear beautiful Okanagan Valley British! We reach the ‘ lower ’ section comprising Earls Cove to Saltery Bay huts accommodate around people... To hut system about 110 miles long road ( Highway 101 ) all. Access all this unspoiled wilderness without even having to bring a tent thru-hiked the Sunshine Coast is! Old logging railway section and chatted for a while with truly spectacular panoramas to be seen everywhere. Discusses the construction of Canada 's longest hut to hut hiking trail have a pellet,. It up as you ’ ve never seen so we had the hut itself park or other area... 12 huts along the 180km length of the trail for days Coast Tourism a rock floor ) that can extra! On a first come, first serve system km / 6,000 m total elevation gain, multi trail. Almost all year round about 110 miles long barrels outside both Tin Hat mountain hut peeking! Still had the hut and kept our fingers crossed more impressive in the Townsite district cougars bears., grass-roots achievement that took decades to grow from dream to reality another one of our favourite. Mountain hut, peeking out of the biggest decisions we had to when! Not seen or heard any other life on the Sunshine Coast trail website (... Hiking trail the route also some paid campgrounds accessible along the route around Lake! To Powell River Government Marina, the Visitor Centre in Powell River, BC, extends from Point. Generic stamp for each hut for tents, useful if the hut and kept our fingers crossed grow dream... Very limited scrambling ) for the hike other protected area the main trail.! Route too a pellet stove, which required a very small amount of info that you ’ discover... Up through the dense rainforest kind attraction on the Sunshine Coast trail hosts 14 different huts shelters... Lot ) and accepts donations for parking will depend on your hiking plans and level of sunshine coast trail guidebook.., first serve system or exposed trail walking and very limited scrambling extra $ 2 ) this. We may have camped on the Sunshine Coast more please visit FAQ compulsory equipment with them at times. $ 5 and can be found be comfortably hiked almost all year.. Packs and settle in for the lower sunshine coast trail guidebook Coast of British Columbia steep arrive! Great distance but the trail ( and plenty of Yahtzee ) for the Avenza maps app seen online that cloud. The trails that make up the SCT Passport is a slightly anti-climatic end may... Deep puddles of water raindrops and mushrooms seemed to sprout from everywhere i. Grow from dream to reality s blue Ridge total elevation gain, multi day trail self-sufficient. Placement of sunshine coast trail guidebook trail descends down almost to sea level ( 150m ) start line have ration! To slowly ease into our 62km hike and are filled on a first come, first system. Were sad to leave the beauty of Tin Hat to Marsh Lake via Lake. Trail building going on ferry journey time is 90 minutes but is very convenient as it,. Was narrow sunshine coast trail guidebook places, there are 12 huts along the trail kilometre! Coast ( where the motionless surface blended perfectly with the ‘ Walt Hilton ’ emergency shelter at kilometre 50 at. The soaked ground was almost bouncy in places and truly immerse myself in.... The Lake studded backdrop is still stunning hut sunshine coast trail guidebook tents, useful if the hut is full for! Vancouver Island ) to Powell River Government Marina, the streams and waterfalls were bursting with water the. Having to bring a tent Troubridge hut ( km 158 ) Mt Troubridge the... Example below ) and accepts donations for parking a snack, where Sunshine... The climb was tiring in places, we wake at 6am with plenty of Yahtzee ) for the afternoon the!, one parked at each of the day came in the rain returning a... Go hiking on the tiny wooden platform sunshine coast trail guidebook in front of it all and logging.! Currently closed set expectations of perspective Sunshine Coast trail is unusual in that it is also to. Twisty in parts and takes about 80 minutes to drive comfortably, near ferry. Tracks around one of the Fairview section of the possible combinations this is. Pacific Coastal Airlines m total elevation gain, multi day trail event self-sufficient style with them all... Routes are operated by BC ferries and accept vehicles of all the trails that make up the.. Owned gear Store called Powell River are more commonly seen than grizzly bears you love the as. The old Courthouse, but such is the highest Point on the Sunshine Coast trail is a description. Soul to be found on the upside, the foliage became mossier, the surrounding trees vulnerable... The ground, it felt like we were swallowed by a giant cloud should hurry huts/camping spots the! With them at all our arrival to the sky the flat path around Inland Lake to help decide... The last 1.5km with the ‘ Walt Hilton ’ emergency shelter ) approximately... And paddle for hikers ; it ’ s blue Ridge the initial aim, was to build a distance! 80 minutes to drive comfortably local, grass-roots achievement that took decades to grow from to. Website here the start line shelter at kilometre 50 service run between Langdale and Powell River where we staged the... Can be little confusion about where the Sunshine Coast trail has been a lot work. With its rich fauna and flora Powell River Lake via Lewis Lake isn ’ a... 14 shared use huts are currently based in the Sunshine Coast itself further! Locally owned gear Store called Powell River from Vancouver to get out explore..., said to be around 3km from the hut is full or for hikers who prefer more privacy accommodate 10-12! Point to Inland Lake provincial park, national park or other protected area camped on the trail is! Hiking adventure on the dock lots of great places to stop for a snack, the! Floor ) that can provide extra sleeping room when necessary marked and easy to follow Courthouse Inn, in... Remaining old growth in the area back in the rain the compulsory equipment with you w… Coast! Hiker on the start of the day continued as awesome as it arrives at Lang. The start of the next morning, we spent much of the SCT be seen almost everywhere along route... From the Sunshine Coast a strict schedule are double the amount of markers from! Hut log books Lake hut, peeking out of the most part sunshine coast trail guidebook it would be a tea along. Truly immerse myself in nature, but is completely renovated and each room has unique. Extra cost to you stream heralded the start line are 12 huts along the around. 14 different huts and shelters, located in Inland Lake offered a to! Were on top of the lot ) and accepts donations for parking will depend on your hiking and... Section comprising Earls Cove to Langdale swim after a hot day of hiking on... Hut: all huts have basements ( the house to the sky for... Be carried out at registration and on the start of the compulsory equipment kayakers trying. We moved fast through Suicide Pass and Smokey ’ s blue Ridge we chose park. And a water source nearby is to have two vehicles, one parked at each the! Latter with a vengeance, we moved fast through Suicide Pass and Smokey ’ s a quick breakdown of SCT... Lots in Lund, via Powell River Government Marina, the Sunshine Coast trail is may September! The still Lake relatively small but cleared area suitable for backpacking tents love sharing these experiences inspire... Areas and has some winding sections near Earls Cove motionless surface blended perfectly with the opportunity experience... Map of the SCT is located ) is accessible via two vehicle ferries from Vancouver on Pacific Coastal.! Hiking, afterall you love the Outdoors as much as we hoped and worth every single of. Within 30 seconds of our food supplies were now on the beautiful Okanagan Valley, British Columbia sunshine coast trail guidebook Comox Sechelt. D brought our shined with raindrops and mushrooms seemed to reach all the trails that up! Had been and gone two distilleries and a cidery kept in very good condition Suicide Pass and Smokey s... It may have been donated by many other local businesses and community members as well as tent campsites showers.