On Sunday I woke up with a plan to hike Tunnel Bluffs before heading up to Squamish to have dinner with Emily and Tyler (oh and to drive my new drone….) but I woke up to the worse possible news.
My Grandma has passed away back home in the UK. She had been poorly for a while and was even given a week to live in September rand battled back to some form of health so whilst this news wasn’t unexpected it was still sickening. Mainly because I haven’t been back to the UK since May so bar a few telephone conversations and facetimes I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye. Being this far from family is the main negative of living in Vancouver (which I truly adore).
So rather than wallow in self pity we decided to carry on with the day and go on the hike. Hiking for me soothes the mind and soul. The peace and quiet allows me to reflect on my wonderful family and how lucky I am to have spent 28 years with 4 grandparents and one great grandparent. For this I am truly blessed.
My Grandma (and Grandad) on my mothers side were avid travellers and I am sure I got my love for travelling from them. RIP Grandma.
Tunnel Bluffs has been on my to-do list for a while, ever since Sam and Navid did it whilst I was playing football last year. The hike starts at a small car park on Route 99, the Sea to Sky Highway. During the summer the car park fills up really early and people foolishly park on the highway (and wonder why their car gets towed away). However in December the route is much quieter and there were only 10 cars in the carpark.
The trail is relatively short, only 7.2km return but the start of the trail is pretty brutal. You rise from 50m to 700m (about 650m elevation) in 1.7km. This is a thigh burner and a few times I thought Sam was going to give up. But after about an hour you reach the ridgeline and the whole hike changes. The path is relatively flat on what looks like an old railway line.
After a further 2.5km you reach a final small scramble up the bluff to what can be described as one of the most beautiful viewpoints I have ever seen. Unlike Eagle Bluffs, St Marks there were only 4 groups with us at the top of Tunnel Bluffs. One a rowdy group of Chinese climbers who were having a great laugh and a couple of solo hikers. We also met some campers heading down the trail who said it was a great place for an overnight camp. I would agree with them IF I could lug a heavier bag up the trail. Below are some pictures from the day hiking Tunnel Bluff.