Inter River Park is a multi-use park in the District of North Vancouver. It features several full-size sports fields, off-leash dog areas and hiking trails.
It’s definitely not the North Shore’s most famous or most used park. It’s a nice one though and popular with locals (as well as dogs and BMX bike enthusiasts).
In this article you’ll find a detailed description of the park, directions on how to get there, a video showing you what the place looks like, and tips to help you make the most out of your visit.
Inter River Park on Vancouver’s North Shore
Inter River Park is located just north of the Second Narrows/Ironworkers Memorial Bridge in the District of North Vancouver. It has eight sports fields including facilities for soccer, baseball and softball. It also has an outdoor lacrosse box.
The park features hiking trails that, heading north, eventually meet up with Lynn Canyon Park where you’ll find the Instagram-worthy Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge. If you cross the bridge, on the west side of Lynn Creek, on the other hand, you’ll also find trails that go through the forest and Seylynn Park all the way to Park & Tilford Mall to the south.
Much of Inter River Park is a designated off-leash or leash-optional dog park. Expect to see lots of dogs walking freely along with their owners on sunny weekends, and the occasional one playing, running and splashing in the creek when the water isn’t too high.
As well as sports fields and hiking trails, there is also a really good bike park with jumps, dips and turns for both novice and advanced BMX racers.
We think of the park as having five different areas. One is where you’ll find the sports fields and another is the BMX bike park. A third area is the main flat and fairly wide path that runs north to south and goes along Lynn Creek from one end of the park to the other. A fourth area is where forested trails start at the far northern end of the park. The fifth area comprises the walking trails through the trees on the west side of the creek.
What’s Where at the Park
As you’ll see in the map below, Inter River Park is a long and fairly narrow park. Running all along the east side are half a dozen or more grass soccer fields. Some of the fields are up the hill and others are at the bottom.
As you enter Inter River Park Drive from Lillooet Road you’ll see the Equestrian Centre on your right and, at the bottom of the hill, a small parking lot, a baseball diamond and a couple of grass soccer fields.
Instead of going into that first small parking lot, if you keep right and go up the hill you’ll find a row of even more soccer fields. If you turn left, on the other hand, and go down the road a tiny ways, you’ll head towards the BMX bike park.
Going back to the first small parking lot you see when you enter the park, at the far end you’ll find a path down the hill that goes to the water. At the bottom of the hill you’ll find the main path. It’s long and wide and flat. It’s also partly paved.
From the bottom of the hill, if you turn right and head north along the path you’ll eventually reach the entrance to beautiful forested trails that lead to Lynn Canyon Park and the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge. The trails there are exceptional and include boardwalks through the trees. These trails, though, are not flat.
Again from the bottom of the hill below the first small parking lot area, instead of following Lynn Creek and heading north along the path, if you head south you’ll loop around and come across the BMX bike park and the lacrosse box. And instead of going either north or south, if at the bottom of the hill you cross the bridge to the other side of the creek, you’ll find more beautiful forested trails (but without the boardwalks).
How to get to Inter River Park
Located at 1301 Lillooet Road, Inter River Park is both west and northwest of Capilano University.
Coming from Vancouver over the Second Narrows Bridge, instead of keeping left, continuing along the Trans-Canada Highway and going up “The Cut” (which is the big long hill), take the exit to Seymour Parkway and then get onto Lillooet Road towards the university. Instead of turning right on Purcell Road and going to CapU though, turn left shortly after and onto Inter River Park Road.
The easiest way to find the non-sports-activities part of the park and access its nature trails is from the parking lot by the soccer fields on Inter River Park Road. After driving north up Lillooett Road, and turning onto Inter River Park Road, park your car at the first parking lot you see at the bottom of the small hill. At the end of the parking lot is a trail down to the river.
Inter River Park Video
Below is a video that showcases the trails at Inter River Park. Not included in the video are scenes of the sports fields or BMX bike park. What you will see though are the trails, forest, bridge, creek and people enjoying their time in nature.
The video was taken in the spring of 2020. Most of what you’ll see is of the trails on the west side of Lynn Creek (so outside Inter River Park itself) in the forest between Inter River and Seylynn Park. When you see the people in the video cross the bridge, that’s when they “officially” enter Inter River Park.
On the Inter River Park side of the creek is a fairly wide and flat trail that goes all the way along both the park and the river. It’s a nice walk and the video ends with a scene of the people walking along this trail.
As you’ll see in the video, there are beautiful forested trails where dogs are allowed off leash. Lynn Creek is actually a fair-sized creek, almost like a river, and can get quite high in the spring and after heavy rains.
What’s in the Area
Near the park there is Lynn Canyon Park which is home to the world-famous Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge. The trails from Inter River Park also eventually meet up with the Baden Powell Trail which connects Deep Cove to Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver.
A couple of minutes away from Inter River Park there is also Rice Lake, which is a beautiful spot to fish and walk around. Access to it is via the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve which is just a 10-minute drive north along Lillooet Road. A short drive away in the other direction is Maplewood Farm which is popular with young children.
Tips and Advice
Below are some suggestions and extra bits of information to help you make the most out of your visit to Inter River Park.
TIP #1: If leaving your car at the first small parking lot you see when entering the park, note that it’s beside a baseball diamond. We usually park there and have never had a problem. If a baseball game is going on, however, be aware that stray foul balls could end up landing near your car.
TIP #2: We love the trails at the north end of Inter River Park that lead up to Lynn Canyon. The boardwalk is lovely and the lush forest scenery is quite spectacular. If you just want to start here, and not go along the long flat path along the side of the creek first, park your car in the far northeast corner of the park (at the far end of the row of soccer fields). It is just a short walk down from there to the entrance to the forested trails.
TIP #3: Inter River Park is a great place to take your dog as he or she can run off-leash in much of the area. If you don’t like dogs though, it might not be your favourite place to be, especially on weekends with good weather.
TIP #4: The BMX bike park is exceptional and, when there isn’t an event going on or official team or club practices, anyone can try it out. Just remember to take your bike and helmet.
TIP #5: In our opinion, the two best places to go for a walk are on the west side of Lynn Creek and on the trails that begin at the north end of the park. Both are beautiful and in the forest. The former is fairly flat and great for a short leisurely stroll. The latter is very pretty with its boardwalks and steps, goes for a long way, and is very highly recommended.
TIP #6: The gate at the entrance to the park gets locked at night. It’s usually open from 6 am until 10 pm (but check the sign for exact times). This is good to know in case you plan to park here in the evening (where it’s free) and hike up the hill to Capilano University for a night course or event (where you have to pay for parking).
To learn about more North Shore places in nature check out the following:
- Baden Powell Trail
- Capilano River Regional Park
- Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve
- Seymour Demonstration Forest
- Lynn Canyon Park
- Lynn Headwaters Regional Park
- Rice Lake
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
To learn about an event that takes place at Inter River Park in September, see our article about the North Vancouver Terry Fox Run.