I would like to introduce all my clients and visitors to my website to Grouse Grind, a near vertical hiking trail in Vancouver, BC that has been an "institution" to Vancouverites and visitors to Vancouver since it was created in the 1980s. It is a one of a kind mountain hiking trail, with no other parallels in the world. It starts at the base of Grouse Mountain, and goes to the top where the sky gondolas end. Grouse Mountain is the mountain range people see when they look north from downtown Vancouver. When I lived in Vancouver in the 1990s, it was a regular hike that I did several times a week as part of my exercise regime. As far as personal favorite places and activities, it ranks near the top for me, and I try to do it at least once whenever I am in Vancouver. It is as close to nature as most city people in Vancouver get, with the exception to Stanley Park, and I recommend it as a must do/ must see for anyone going to visit Vancouver, providing you are reasonably healthy, as it can be a challenging hike/ climb. For those who don't think they can do it, a visit up Grouse Mountain is possible by riding the sky gondolas. Grouse Grind is closed in the winter months and during the rainy months it can be slippery and treacherous, so user beware.
This is what Wikipedia says about Grouse Grind:
"Grouse Mountain is the location of a very popular hiking trail known as the Grouse Grind.It is a steep trail that climbs 853 m (2,800 ft) over a distance of 2.9 km (1.8 mi), with an average grade of 17 degrees (or 31%) and short sections of up to 30 degrees.The trail, nicknamed "Mother Nature's Stairmaster", is notoriously grueling due to its steepness and mountainous terrain.Hikers, who often time themselves on the trail, reach the top in approximately 90 minutes on average although some who are very fit can finish in under 30 minutes.
Don McPherson and Phil Severy built the Grind in the early 1980s, uninvited by the regional district or the owners of Grouse Mountain."
You can also check the hiking conditions online prior to making the trek out to Grouse Grind on its official site:
Or on its Facebook community site:
The Globe and Mail did an interesting article on the Grind:
When I was in Vancouver in August 2012, I wanted to document my ascent up Grouse Grind. Generally, people only go up Grouse Grind, and take the sky gondola back down, as it is super hard on the knees doing the descent. During the hike, which took me about 80 minutes at a casual walking pace, I took pictures at about 1 per minute. I've posted them on this page for those who may be considering doing the hike, for those who have already done it and would like to see it again, and for those who have no intention of doing it but would like to see what it looks like. I would associate going up the Grind as almost a spiritual experience like walking up a stairwell to heaven, although it is likely just my endorphins kicking in.
If you go, bring at least a half liter bottle of water and some energy food like trail mix, as you will need it. Also bring extra clothing as it gets cooler as you ascend and a cell phone for emergencies. Give yourself at least two hours to finish the hike if it is your first time doing it, and check to see when the sun sets and be there well ahead of that, as you don't want to be stranded there when it gets dark. Also, stay on the trail, as you can get lost if you wander off it.
I've posted the pictures in chronological order starting at the bottom of this page, so go to the very bottom and scroll up, just like you are climbing the Grind. The day I went, it was moderately warm, sunny and some overcast conditions.
Start at the bottom of the page
The trip back down the mountain via the Sky Gondola
The electronic timer that records people's finish times using a chip in their Grouse Mountain pass card. The top times are posted here:
The tourism centre at the top of Grouse Mountain has a restaurant and gift shop and the entrance to the sky gondola
The top of Grouse Grind and the end of a beautiful hike
Almost at the top, can see sunlight through the trees
The tourism centre at the top of Grouse Mountain
Start here and begin your climb
There I am 3/4 of the way up the trail
The electronic timer that records people's start times using a chip in the Grouse Mountain pass card. Hikers swipe their card over the timer and it is recorded on a computer at the Grouse Mountain Tourism Centre. Hikers then swipe their card at the top of the Grind to record their finish times.