If you love outdoor recreation then Squamish is for you! Consistently named the Outdoor Recreation Capital of Canada, life in Squamish is only minutes from the outdoors. Whether you like to explore mountains, ocean or the sky; Squamish has plenty of activities and adventures to get your adrenaline pumping. Here are the top outdoor recreation activities that are easily accessible from Squamish.
Squamish has some of the best rated and most accessible mountain climbing in the world! Most climbing is centered around The Chief which towers 700 meters above sea level overlooking the Howe Sound. The granite monolith has over a hundred climbing routes for all levels of climbers. Other popular climbing spots in Squamish include Shannon Falls, Murrin Park and the Smoke Bluffs. Squamish has an avid and progressive climbing community with lots of great resources for those new to the sport. For more on climbing, see the Squamish Climbing website.
In Squamish the population of bikes exceeds people. Mountain Biking (down-hill, cross country, free-style) is popular among the young and the old in Squamish. With over 200 kilometers of single track there is no shortage of new terrain to explore. Squamish’s world-class trail network has been rated as one of the best in Canada (and some would say the world). With a passionate and dedicated community of Mountain Bikers and one of Canada’s most dedicated off-road cycling associations SORCA Squamish is the place to be for bike enthusiasts in British Columbia.
Wind & Kite Surfing
Squamish has all the fundamentals of a great wind and kite surfing location; epic winds, accessible waters and the ‘Spit’, a long narrow piece of land at the mouth of the Squamish River which is ideal for catching high intensity winds. Throughout much of the year you will see a rainbow of kites sailing, jumping and surfing in the Howe Sound. . Squamish Windsports Society is your go-to place for everything kite and wind surfing.
Winter in Squamish is a skiier or snowboarders dream. Only 35 minutes from Blackcomb and Whistler and with a plethora of back-country, nordic and heli-skiing; where else would you want to be but Squamish? Squamish offers some of the best back-county skiing in Canada. Garibaldi Provincial Park boasts 195,000 hectares of glacial mountains, old growth forests and gentle slopes. The Callaghan Valley offers nearly 100 kilometers of trails for skiers and all levels. Nordic skiing (cross country) and snowshoeing is also a popular pastime for many Squamish locals; Brandywine Falls, The Callaghan and Whistler Olympic Park are all easily accessible from Squamish.
Looking for a little more power to explore the powder? Sledding around Squamish is world-class with Brohm Ridge, Ticouni Ridge and Brandywine being some of the favourite areas. Snow-mobiling in Squamish offers an array of treed routes, creek crossings and groomed trails for all levels of riders.
With hundreds of acres of wilderness surrounding Squamish your hiking options are endless. Some popular hikes include the Squamish Chief and the Sea to Sky Gondola Trail. Within these two hiking areas there are tons of different routes to choose from ranging in length, terrain and difficulty. If you wish to stay away from the crowds there are lesser populated trails in the back-country and multiple days hikes to choose from where you pack your belongings in and out.
Sailing & Boating
The water and islands around Squamish make it ideal for boating- especially in the summer months. With three marinas there is a great boaty scene in Squamish. The Squamish Yacht Club offers overnight moorage and is a great resource to explore the sailing and boating scene. With such picturesque coastline boating in Squamish is an obvious choice.
SUPing & Kayaking
There are several spots to choose from if you want to explore the water by Stand up Paddle Board or Kayak. The Mamquam River, Squamish Estuary, Alice Lake and Howe Sounds boast great water exploration settings.
If you prefer to explore below the surface of the water Squamish offers some great scuba-diving too. The Howe Sounds is a popular spot for divers with Porteau Cove, Pam Rocks and Christie Islet being some of the more popular dive spots. Explore man-made reefs, sunken pirate ships and over 100 different marine species off the coast of Squamish.
White Water Rafting
Squamish has white-water rafting for all ages and experience levels and is one of Canada’s top destinations for rafting. The Cheakamus River offers class 1 and class 2 rapids great for beginners and novice rafters while the Elaho-Squamish River has class 3 and 4 rapids. The best part of white-water rafting in Squamish is the stunning scenery surrounding.
Avid anglers will be delighted at the range of fishing on offer in Squamish. Whether you prefer river, lake or ocean fishing there is something for everyone. The Mamquam, Cheakamus, Squamish and Elaho Rivers see species such as Salmon and Trout. Brohm and Browning Lake have stocked and wild trout available for the catching.
ATV/ Dirt Biking
Add some horse power to your exploration on an ATV or dirt-bike. With lots of back-country trails to explore and terrain suitable for all ages and experience levels.
This is not an exhausted list of Squamish Outdoor Recreation activities. In and around Squamish you will also find horse-back riding, mountaineering, golfing, yoga and much more. If you are into spending time outdoors or have always wanted to be more ‘outdoorsy’ then Squamish is the place for you. Organize a personal tour of the town or view current houses for sale and be one step closer to your new life in Squamish.