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Two nice waterfalls, a granite slot canyon, and old growth trees are featured in this West Van park.
||2.6 km (return)
||Linear - Return
Follow Highway #1 (Trans-Canada / Upper Levels Highway) towards Horseshoe Bay. Take exit #4 and immediately turn right on to Woodgreen Drive. Follow the road uphill, then turn right onto Woodgreen Place and follow it to the entrance to Cypress Falls regional park. Finding the park may be a challenge; there are very few signs for the park. Free parking is available at the main entrance, next to the small baseball diamond.
Alternately, the park can be accessed via Cypress Bowl Road. Instead of taking exit #4 off of the Upper Levels Highway, take exit #8. Follow Cypress Bowl Road for approximately 2.8 km until it passes a municipal works yard and sharply switchbacks to the right. Park off to the side near the large yellow gate, located near the outer edge of the turn. The gated gravel road, known as Eagle Lake Access Road, can be followed approximately one kilometer to a junction with the park's eastern trail.
Starting at main parking lot next to ball diamond, follow the main trail as it curves gradually uphill through the forest. If you are hiking the main trail to the waterfalls, continue for half a kilometer and ignore all side trails. A wooden platform over the edge of the is reached, acting as a viewpoint for the lower waterfall.
Although a network of minor trails extends in every direction from the lower falls, there are two primary trails leading past the falls. One trail leads along the west side of the creek to the upper falls, while the other crosses the creek to it's east side and continues through an old growth rainforest.
To take the east trail, cross the wooden bridge that's located immediately past the waterfall viewing platform. From here, the trail climbs a short distance uphill before leveling out in a fantastic old growth forest. Some of the trees in this area are over 400 years old, miraculously surviving the logging that took place in the early days of Vancouver. A chain link fence and gate is reached approximately 400 meters later. Just beyond it, the trail ends at the edge of Eagle Lake Access Road. Turning left allows you to loop around to the upper waterfall trail, while turning right leads to Cypress Bowl Road.
To follow the west trail to the upper falls, continue past the wooden bridge without crossing it. The trail will almost immediately turn left and climb up a short hillside with a large number of exposed roods. The forest along this stretch of trail isn't as impressive as the old growth area, but still a pleasant walk. Continue for a little over half a kilometer until before reaching a different chain fence and gate. Just beyond the gate is the viewpoint area for the beautiful upper waterfall, cascading down into a slot canyon. A short distance past the waterfall, the trail exits on a gravel service road. As mentioned earlier, the road can be followed to create a loop hike - turn right, then right again and cross a road bridge over the canyon. Watch for the start of the old growth forest trail, located a short distance beyond the power substation.
In addition to the two main trails, the park has a number of smaller trails that can be fun to explore. The waterfalls, canyon, old growth forest, and low elevation make the park a great family-friendly destination all year long. Rainy days are great for taking some moody photos of the forest. Use caution - some of the rougher trails run dangerously close to the edge of the canyon. The rocks here are moss covered and one slip could be deadly.
As an alternative to the main trailhead, the area can be reached from Cypress Bowl Road via the gated gravel road just past the municipal works yard. It's a rather boring one kilometer walk to the power lines at the top of the hill. As the road curves to the right, watch for a small sign on the left that marks the start of a trail. Following the trail leads through an old growth forest and to the main junction at the wooden bridge - the exact opposite of what is described above.
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|Lower falls viewpoint
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|Bridge (main junction)
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|Old growth forest
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|Chain link gate on east trail
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|East trail ends at road
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|Chain link gate on west trail
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|Upper falls viewpoint
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|West trail ends at road
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