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I'm currently in Vancouver and I want to go for a hike. The obvious choice would be Grouse Mountain but unfortunately the Grouse Grind will be closed until May.

So I'm looking for an alternative for a hike that fulfils the following conditions:

  • The whole activity (going there + hike + going back) should not take more than a day
  • It should be easily reachable by public transport from downtown Vancouver
  • It should be feasible to do it on a weekend in April
  • The hike should not have a higher technical level than T3
  • I would prefer if the hike would lead to a summit or another interesting landmark (nice lake, a cave, etc.)
  • I would prefer if the hike offers some nice views
  • What scale do you use for technical level? (I've never heard of any hiking difficulty scale). – Vince Apr 10 '15 at 20:21
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    Sorry, should have mentioned that. I refer to the international acknowledged hike scale of the Swiss Alpine-Club (SAC): hikr.org/post2984.html – RoflcoptrException Apr 10 '15 at 20:32
  • Plenty of shore-ish level hikes around the coast and headlands, but very little climb. Would that sort of thing interest you? – Gagravarr Apr 10 '15 at 21:44
  • Would also be interesting, but I would like to go on a summit if possible. I'll add more information to the question. – RoflcoptrException Apr 10 '15 at 21:50
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Well, as you can tell if you're in Vancouver, the North Shore didn't really get winter this year. The BCMC Trail is just east of the Grouse Grind and starts from the same parking lot - it's also a way better hiking trail. The Grind is basically a staircase in the forest and it's name is well-earned.

If you don't feel like hiking the trail both ways you can always take the gondola down.

Alternatively, you could take the gondola to the top of Grouse Mountain and do some hiking at the top as there is very little snow right now. Goat Mountain is a favorite. If you're feeling adventurous you can do both the BCMC and Goat Mountain and ride the gondola down after the return from Goat.

As for the rating scale you posted you won't find much above the T3 level on the North Shore.

Lynn Peak(great view) would also be a good hike right now. It was icy in January, but most of it has melted since then. There are other hikes of varying difficulty in Lynn Headwaters Regional Park that might interest you as well.

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    Thanks a lot for this very useful list. Today I went up to the Grouse Mountain. I planned to take the BCMC trail but since one of the employees at the valley station said that we can also go up on the Grouse Grind we did that. Was great! – RoflcoptrException Apr 12 '15 at 2:19
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Quarry Rock is a personal favourite of mine. Plus, Deep Cove is a awesome little town to stop for some ice cream, a drink, or a swim after the hike. It's roughly a half-hour hike up.

From Downtown Vancouver, take the 211 to Phibbs Exchange then transfer to the 212 Deep Cove. Then, it's a short walk to the trailhead.

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