West Vancouver’s Cypress Mountain offers 11 km of snowshoe trails for outdoor enthusiasts of all skill levels to enjoy during Vancouver’s winter season.
There are ticketed trails at the ski hill, but also free backcountry ones within Cypress Provincial Park.
For general information about the resort, see our main article about Cypress Mountain. For ski conditions, click Lower Mainland Snow Conditions. And for details about snowshoeing at Cypress, see below.
Cypress Snowshoeing Trails
Cypress Mountain, located in West Vancouver, is Metro Vancouver’s largest ski hill. In addition to downhill and Nordic skiing opportunities, the resort features close to a dozen kilometres of snowshoeing terrain.
Snowshoeing at Cypress takes place on Hollyburn Mountain, which is located right before the downhill ski area. Both tubing and Nordic skiing also take place in the Hollyburn area.
The snowshoe trails are open for regular hours from 9 am to 4 pm daily, with special snowshoe tours taking place in the evenings. The resort’s main snowshoe trails do not have lighting, which is why they close earlier than the rest of the mountain.
Cypress Snowshoe Tours
There are several different options to enjoy the snowshoe trails up at Cypress Mountain. Folks can grab a map and go on a self-guided tour, participate in a guided tour or experience the mountain’s newest offering – Lights to the Lodge.
If you feel like exploring the mountain on your own, Cypress Mountain offers self-guided snowshoe tours. Maps are provided at the ticket counter, and the trails up the mountain are clearly marked. Trail difficulty ranges from easy (green trails) to hard (black trails). There are also warming huts scattered across the mountain.
TIP: The snowshoe trails can be very narrow. Snowshoe trail etiquette involves being courteous and moving to the side when people behind you want to pass
Guided Snowshoe Tours
Cypress Mountain offers five different guided snowshoe tour options. There’s the Lights to the Lodge, Chocolate Fondue, Hollyburn Meadows, Cheese & Chocolate Fondue, and Winter Wanderer S’mores.
All guided snowshoe tour packages include snowshoe rentals, headlamps, food (if applicable) and a guide on the trails. Prices for the guided snowshoe tours range from around $49 to $92, depending on the type of tour and age of guests.
Lights to the Lodge Snowshoeing
Lights to the Lodge is Cypress Mountain’s newest guided tour option. It’s a 1-km trek that’s lit with LED lights to the Hollyburn Lodge. It takes place in the evening as it can be difficult to see the lights when the sun is out.
On Saturday evenings from 7 to 9 pm there is also family-friendly music at the Lodge. Reserved seating for the music costs $5 and must be booked in advance.
Unlike the other guided snowshoe tours, Cypress Mountain Sky Card holders receive a discount on Lights to the Lodge tours. Adults save about $7 with their Sky Card, youth and seniors save $6, and children save $1.
Cypress Snowshoeing Prices
Below are the costs for trail tickets in the 2019/2020 season. Prices listed below do not include GST. (Note: Prices are subject to change. Check the official Cypress Mountain website for details.)
- Adults (ages 19 to 64) – $14
- Seniors (ages 65+) – $9
- Youth (ages 13 to 18) – $9
- Children (ages 6 to 12) – $6
- Little Kids (ages 0 to 5) – $4
For folk that do not have their own snowshoes, rentals cost around $10-20 more. Due to the trails closing at 4 pm, the last rentals go out at 2 o’clock.
Tips and Advice
Below are some suggestions to help you make the most out of your snowshoeing experience at Cypress Mountain.
TIP #1: Bring your own snowshoes – it saves time and a few dollars. In addition, you won’t have to worry about returning the equipment before the shop closes!
TIP #2: Your car needs to have snow tires! The roads can get very slick and icy in the winter. (When we last went, on a day when it was snowing, we saw a number of people having to turn back because their cars couldn’t make it up the mountain).
TIP #3: Get there early. Not only will it give you more time to enjoy the snow, but the parking lot can get very crowded. Sometimes the traffic to enter the parking lot even backs up down the hill!
TIP #4: In addition to ticketed trails, there are also free snowshoeing trails at Cypress Provincial Park. These include trails that are outside the resort’s boundaries including ones that lead to Black Mountain Plateau, the Bowen Lookout and Hollyburn Mountain. These trails are not patrolled, however, so using them is at one’s own risk. If you are experienced at backcountry exploring, and go prepared, they are a good option. If you don’t know what you’re doing though, stick to the paid trails or check out the Snowshoeing at Mount Seymour instead.
Click Cypress Snowshoeing for more details.
Other articles that may be of interest include the following:
- Cypress Mountain Ski Resort
- Cypress Provincial Park
- Lower Mainland Ski Hills
- Vancouver Ski Hills & Snow Conditions
- West Vancouver