Vedder Mountain Ridge Trail
Nice easy hike through moss covered open surroundings, but still very shady. Good views of the Fraser Valley.
||11.0 km (return)
||Linear - Return
From Highway #1 (Trans-Canada Highway) near Chilliwack, take Exit #119 south. Follow Vedder Road for 5 km through Sardis, eventually reaching a three way stop sign immediately before the bridge. Continue straight over the bridge, soon after reaching a traffic light. Turn left at the lights, heading uphill on Cultus Lake Road. Continue for a little over 2 km before turning right onto Parmenter Road.
On Parmenter Road, continue past the the gravel pit to the end of the pavement. Keep to the right as the road changes to gravel, continuing uphill for approximately 600 meters to the next fork in the road. The fork to the right is gated and locked. If you have a car, park here. Otherwise, reset your odometer and put your vehicle into four wheel drive - the road from this point on is extremely rough. Continue uphill for 2.9 km, watching for other offroad vehicles and mountain bikes. A large yellow sign and wooden trailhead post on the right mark the start of the Vedder Ridge Trail.
Follow the left fork at the junction to reach the hiking trailhead. This is a nice easy hike with lots of resting spots along the way. Just before the summit the trail forks. Take the left fork to reach the Summit, it is not far ahead. If you go right the trail drops sharply to a maze of quad and dirt bike trails.
When on the Summit there is a hidden viewing area on the North part of it. Don't miss it. It's the highlight of the trip.
The first 800 meters of the hike consists of trudging up a muddy old logging road alongside mountain bikers, dirt bikers and ATVers. Continue uphill at a fairly steady pace, eventually reaching a side road just before the top of the ridge. Turn left onto the side road, following it for another 400 meters to a circular clearing. The true start of the Vedder Ridge Trail will be located on the right, marked with a sign and a forgotten "user survey" box.
From this point on, the majority of the trail leads through an open forest along the top of the ridge. Surprisingly, there is very little underbrush on the forest floor - something that is not common for the area.
* Forest very quickly opens up - fully forested but tall trees and not a large amount of underbrush. Not typical for area. Trail follows the crest of the ridge, heading south-west at a relatively gradual grade. Some minor elevation loss/regain as it follows small "bumps" on the ridge. Fairly easy.
* At approximately 3.5km, a small trail heads off to the right for about 30 meters to a mostly forested lookout. Minor views.
* Trail continues past a small pond and to a better viewpoint on a small hill about 500 meters later.
* Another 500 meters past the minor viewpoint, the trail begins to descend steeply to a large pond. At the bottom of the hill, the trail turns right and loops around the pond and across a small marshy stretch of "creek". It then turns left once on the opposite side of the pond, heading west and almost immediately passing another small pond and reaching the junction with the "West Trail", leading down to the right.
* Turn sharply left here.
* Trail immediately begins climbing uphill, making it's final ascent to the summit. Steep compared to the rest of the trail - includes some stairs and rope.
* Fairly quickly (5mins) reaches the top of the summit area - excellent views from this point. Leads along the rocky summit area ridge for about 150 meters to the "true" summit - not as nice as the viewpoint on the rocky ridge just before.
|Trail post / start of hike
||10U 572206 5435091
||10U 572311 5435829
|Start of actual trail
||10U 572056 5435498
|Minor viewpoint #1
||10U 570957 5434814
|Small pond #1
||10U 570847 5434535
|Minor viewpoint #2
||10U 570735 5434406
||10U 570193 5433937
|Small pond #2
||10U 570091 5434054
|West Trail junction
||10U 570014 5434042
||10U 569957 5433969
||10U 569844 5433861