Lighthouse Park North Vancouver
|Of all the numerous parks in the Lower Mainland
Lighthouse Park could be considered the most spiritual. The park
contains the last stand of old growth forest in the area. Standing
amongst these quiet giants and looking straight up to see their tops it
is easy to be open to nature's many blessings and to wish their
continuity. It becomes understandable why so many individuals have
devoted their lives to preserve what's left of these survivors.
It is easily accessible off Marine Drive via Beacon Lane in West
Vancouver just east of Eagle Harbour. Lots of trails wind their way
around the park with several challenging changes in elevation. Small
picnic areas are scattered amongst the big trees. Several rocky
outcroppings present wonderful vistas of the area, Vancouver and
Vancouver Island. There are public facilities available. Along the
forest floor it remains cool even on hot days, very welcome considering
the exertion required on some of the trails.
Information relating to the Point Atkinson Lighthouse, now automated, is
available at the entrance to the park and on plaques close to viewpoints
of this very attractive structure.
Lighthouse Park, 12km south of Horseshoe Bay, is 75 hectares of the most
original and most rugged of the North Shore's parks. Stunning views, and
more than 60 bird species spotted here.
Hikes through one of the few remaining original forests in Greater
Vancouver end at Point Atkinson with its lighthouse.
Lighthouse Park has for many years been a popular practice area for
North Shore rock climbers as well as a great spot to enjoy a summer
sunset. Walking shoes or runners are recommended for the half hour walk
which ends at the shoreline close to the lighthouse viewpoint.
*No camping, fires, barbeques, hibachis or propane stoves permitted.
Lighthouse Park is tucked away off Marine Drive in West Vancouver at the
south end of Beacon Lane. To reach it, travel west on Marine from the
heart of West Vancouver. The park turnoff is marked by a wooden sign;
turn south on Beacon Lane and drive to the parking lot. There is regular
bus service from Park Royal Shopping Centre to the park; take the
Horseshoe Bay (#250).
An interpretive sign at the end of the parking lot provides a large map
of the park and some natural-history notes. A concise map of park trails
is also available here, complete with a suggestion for a self-guided
walk to some of the more significant natural features in the park. For
information, call West Vancouver Parks and Recreation, (604) 925-7200.