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Whistler, British Columbia

Hike and Camp at Garibaldi Lake

Originally added by Emily Haggar

Hands down this is one of the most beautiful lakes in Southwestern BCbig mountains, pristine water, and gorgeous scenery. 19km round trip (3020ft elevation gain). Awesome day trip, but also has great camping. Duration: Full day.

Garibaldi Lake is a huge basin of beautiful turquoise water measuring almost 10 square kilometers (2460 acres), and located at nearly 5000ft above sea level. The lake is over 800 feet deep, filled with pristine glacial water. You’ll be surrounded by big snowy mountains, which remain bright white all summer long, including some of the west coast’s most memorable landmarks. After a visit here, your eyes will thank you, and so will your heart. It’s just that kind of place.

Located in Garibaldi Park, the lake sits just below the Black Tusk, Panorama Ridge, Mt Garibaldi and Castle Towers. The lake is an excellent destination for a day hike, or you can camp ($10/person/night) and explore the area further.

Take HWY99 north from Squamish to park signs for Black Tusk on your right, about 20 minutes up the highway, and drive to the parking area (2WD, paved). On busy summer weekends, the entire parking area will be full, with cars lined to the highway, so come on a weekday if possible. Like Joffre Lakes, this area is extremely well loved by its’ visitors, so you’ll need to wake up early or go in the off season to spend some time alone with the lake.

The trail to Garibaldi Lake is a wide, smooth, perfect grade of switchbacks. You’ll find snow on the trail right into the early summer months, which will come as a surprise to folks driving up from Vancouver where the weather is balmy. The lake usually starts to thaw in late June.

This is a great destination any month of the year if you come with the right gear. In the winter it’s an amazing trip on snowshoes, and in summer/fall the hiking is unrivaled. If you have the time, this part of Garibaldi Park contains some of the best hiking trails you could ever hope to find (Black Tusk, Panorama Ridge, Helm Lake).

Spending the day at Garibaldi Lake is a unique and beautiful mountain experience. Life is measured by moments like this.

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Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Picnic Area


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Overall rating: 

This place is beyond amazing and through pictures they cannot even depict how incredible it is. 😍 People have stated that there is a scarce amount of hiking spots. At Lake Garabaldi about 50 sites. If you don't find a spot, there is the other campsite but again, you're closer to the bears. This hike is not for beginners. Make sure you have adequate shoes and a water filtration system in case you do run out of water. Deet spray is a must when enduring those nasty flies. Bring sun protection, hiking poles and food, (duh!) When you do summit, make sure you go up the snow covered path because it easier and have fun! Round trip is 19 miles, if you don't end up backpacking, good luck!

One of the most stunning alpine lakes I've ever hiked too. On the weekends get there before 7am - the lot was already full when we showed up and thought we were early!

This is a great hike - one I have done every year since I have lived in BC!

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Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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