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9 lower elevation hikes and walks around Vancouver to enjoy the snowfall

With another 20cm of snowfall forecasted, Vancouver is soon set to look like a winter wonderland.

Photo | Jeremy Bishop

After being blessed with a white Christmas, Vancouver is again set to be blanketed with up to 20cm of fresh snow after a heavy snowfall yesterday left the city looking more akin to the Arctic Tundra.

As Vancouver rarely gets to enjoy so much snow, it’s no surprise that many of us are already fed up with trudging through slush and ice on the city sidewalks with our pups.

To make your dog’s daily walks a little less Ice Capades and a little more powdery winter wonderland, we’ve gathered the closest lower elevation destinations around Vancouver that you can head to any time of day for a walk or hike.

Of course, with any winter adventure, the safety of you and your pooch must come first, so you do choose to head out into the snow, make sure to bring along the 10 essentials for winter hiking, and think about investing in a pair of micro spikes, Yaktrax or snowshoes and a pair of snow booties for your pup.

As anyone who has driven in the city in recent days knows, if you’re travelling by car, ensure it’s equipped with appropriate winter season tires and only drive in conditions that you feel comfortable driving in.

Happy winter walking!

1. Pacific Spirit Regional Park

Where: UBC

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 20 minutes

Nestled over at UBC, the sprawling rainforest at Pacific Spirit Regional Park has a multitude of trails in over 750 hectares of forest that weave in and out of huge Douglas Firs - perfect for a long or short hike that’s an incredibly popular trail for dog walkers.

There are plenty of spots for snow-filled photo opportunities too - with a wealth of ferns, logs and tree stumps among the giant Firs you’ll have no shortage of spots to take winter wonderland-esque snaps of your pooch.

2. Stanley Park

Where: Downtown Vancouver

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 5 minutes

Better known as Vancouver’s emerald jewel, Stanley Park - plus the sea wall that goes around it - boasts some of the best photo opportunities in the city and is currently sugar-coated with fluffy white snow.

With mountain vistas, cityscapes or sherbet-dusted forest strolls to explore, you and your pup won’t be short of places for a scenic winter snap.

3. Whytecliff Park

Where: West Vancouver

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 25 minutes

A small rocky park with fantastic views of Howe Sound, Bowen Island and the Sunshine Coast, Whytecliff Park is beautiful all year round, including when it gets a dusting of snow. The beach-side destination also includes a park that your pup can charge around and a small hill if you want to sled with your pooch.

4. Vanier Park

Where: Kitsilano

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 10 minutes

Vanier Park has been transformed into every dog's snowy dream after the huge snowfall last week, with cross-country skiers, huge piles of powder plus frozen ponds that hockey skaters have taken to - truly turning it into a winter wonderland.

Plus, Hadden Park dog beach is just a stone's throw away for pups to zoom around in the piles of snow.

5. Kitsilano Beach

Where: Kitsilano

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 10 minutes

Just around the bend from Vanier Park and Hadden Park dog beach is Kits Beach, another easily accessible snowy location for dogs and owners to enjoy alike.

Beautiful views of the North Shore mountains, lots of space, and a chilled out atmosphere make this beach a perfect place to explore with your pup, whatever the weather.

6. Ambleside

Where: West Vancouver

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 20 minutes

With over 8.5 acres of grassy lawns, beach access and trails, your dog will adore all the space in this lesser-known Vancouver park that has been coated in snow in recent days.

Plus you can even enjoy the views of the mountains without having to risk the drive up!

7. Lighthouse Park

Where: West Vancouver

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 40 minutes

Lighthouse Park in West Vancouver has trails to suit each member of the family, including your pup. From scrabbles up boulders for viewpoints to easy strolls along the beach, this hidden gem is tucked away on Marine Drive away from the hustle and bustle of the mountains.

The many trails means your hike can be as long or as short as you please - and with breath-taking views of the city and the ocean.

8. Charleson Park

Where: Fairview

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 15 minutes

Just a stone's throw from the city in Fairview, Charleson Park has fantastic views of False Creek, and opens to striking views of the downtown shoreline - making it the perfect place to stop off if you've been walking along the seawall.

Plus the dedicated dog park is a fantastic spot to let your pup run free as you soak up the views.

9. Porteau Cove Marine Park

Where: Fairview

Driving time from Downtown Vancouver: 50 minutes

A small destination on the Sea to Sky highway that's usually a hot spot for scuba divers, Porteau Cove Marine Park is a pretty place to stop in at for a short walk on your way up to Whistler or back to the city. It also has an easy walking trail to a lookout that overlooks Porteau Cove and Howe Sound for you and your pup to stretch your legs.

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