Elfin Lakes, Garibaldi Park, Coast Mountains, BC

Elfin Lakes was my go-to hike when I lived in Vancouver. I have done it many times, either as a day trip to the Elfin Lakes or as an overnight trip that continued farther to Mamquam Lakes via the Opal Cone. Elfin Lakes is great destination but I found the scenery between Opal Cone and Mamquam Lakes to be even better, so I recommend spending at least 3 days to explore the area. It’s a gorgeous place with lots of scenic variety and interesting geology.

The only downside is its popularity, so don’t expect to have much solitude until you pass the cabin. You can avoid the big crowds by going mid-week in summer or later in the season in September or early October. It’s also a popular winter trip, although I have never done that myself.

From Elfin Lakes, you can continue to Mamquam lakes by crossing a spectacular volcanic area with a great view of Bishop Glacier and Mt Garibaldi. The is short side trail up to Opal Cone, an extinct volcano.

  • To Elfin Lakes (round trip): 22 km, 600 m elevation gain, 6-8 hours
  • To Mamquam Lake from Elfin Lakes (round trip): 22 km, 610 m elevation gain, 8-9 hours

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