The Chief a Top-10 Hike in Squamish, B.C.
The Chief has everything hikers would want from a day-hike…waterfalls, dense forest, colorful and unique rock formations, raw beauty, challenging scrambles and of course, awe-inspiring views.
Canada’s self proclaimed, “outdoor recreational capital” is Squamish, B.C. Squamish is located about an hour or so north of Vancouver…about 45 minutes south of Whistler (home of the 2010 Winter Olympics). The beautiful coastal drive along the Sea-to-Sky highway makes for a challenging journey, as the impressive scenery is a bit memorizing.
Just south of Squamish, in Stawamus Park, is a shear, unassuming rock face—however once you pull into the parking lot and head to the trail head, you’re transported into an outdoor wonderland. The Chief has to be on my top-10 best day hike list—it has everything I look for in a hike…waterfalls, colorful and unique rock formations, dense forest, raw beauty, challenging scrambles, and of course, awe-inspiring views from the peak(s).
The Chief is a challenging hike/climb 2000′ high above the valley below. The beginning of the hike takes you along several waterfalls, then you find yourself in the wonderment of dense forest. As you near the top and above the treeline you find massive granite faces with crevices and assistance devices. Once atop this vigorous mountain, spectacular views of the Squamish Valley, Howe Sound and the town of Squamish will greet you with delight.
Hiking The Chief is very popular and the route is well marked by aluminum signs on trees. It does have a few tricky “rope/chain assist” sections toward the top, which I found quite fun and challenging. All the hiking guides say it will take 2-3 hours to reach the summit, we did it in less than 2 hours with several photo-opp stops.
Check out the video below for an overview of the hike to the top of The Chief.
Click here for a Map to The Chief hike in Stawamus Park, British Columbia.