Explore Squamish - February 27, 2021

Squamish - A Trail Runner's Paradise

Elfin Lakes
Photo: D'Arcy McLeish

Runners from all over the continent flock to Squamish to revere in the diverse beauty of the area, the scenic oceanfront, lush rainforests, dreamlike alpine and unending mountain vistas. There's no such thing as a lousy trail in the Sea to Sky. No matter where you end up, you won't find anything short of jaw-dropping. 

Being such a trail running mecca; it's no surprise that Squamish is home to so many notable races such as the Squamish 50, Loop the Lakes and some of the Coast Mountain Trail Series races. 

In addition to the views, the best part of trail running is the softer impact it leaves on your joints, allowing you to run further into the mountains armed with your worthy trail runners and a sense of adventure. 

Beginner Trails 

Oceanfront Loop

A quick loop along the shores of the Howe Sound. The trail is a 2km flat run that passes by Nexen Beach. 
Length: 2 km

Four Lakes Trail

A Squamish Classic. At about 6km long, it’s an easy, loamy loop with lots of options to make things longer or more interesting. 
Length: 6 km


One of the best little trails in Squamish. It’s got a gentle grade, but just enough corners and easy technical sections to keep you on your toes. It can be run in either direction with lots of add-ons if you choose to run the Brackendale trails as well.
Length: 6 km one-way

Intermediate Trails

Smoke Bluffs

Teeming with off-turns and side-shoots, a run through the Smoke Bluffs loop can be as exciting as you choose it to be. Try running through a few of the climber's access trails to increase the technical challenges of the route. 
Length: 2.3 km return

Brohm Lake Loop

This loop is for those looking to challenge their footwork. The Brohm Lake Loop is twisty, steep and requires good footwork and a little patience. There is a main loop here with plenty of add-ons to make the run as long as you like. 
Length: 7.5 km

Advanced Trails

Legacy Climb

If you’re into climbing, this is the trail for you. The Legacy Trail is a long and consistent ascent in the forests behind Quest University. The climbs here are sustained so be ready. Once you’re finished the climb, have a break, and then it’s your choice of fast, flowy or furious descents. Recycle and Angry Midget are super fun, technical choices and Half Nelson is smooth, flowy and fast. You can't go wrong with this one for someone looking to challenge the lungs and the legs.
Length: 6.6 km one-way

Elfin Lakes

Popular in the Winter for backcountry skiers, running the out and back to Elfin Lakes is a great choice for an early morning run in the mountains. At 22km for the return trip, it runs through old growth forest to an alpine ridge, ending at two of the most beautiful lakes in Garibaldi Provincial Park. After a snack and a quick swim at Elfin Lakes, head back down Paul Ridge to where you started. The views on this trail are stunning. A BC trail running classic.
Length: 22 km

Black Tusk

An absolute must for anyone into their trail running. As an out and back, start at the Rubble Creek Parking Lot just north of Squamish, enjoy the switchbacks as you climb for 8km into the high Alpine to Garibaldi Lakes and the base of Black Tusk. If you’re into one of the Sea to Sky Corridor’s most epic running routes, try it as a point to point, 25km high alpine epic! Start at the Cheakamus Lake Parking lot just south of Whistler and finish at Rubble Creek. A must do!
Length: 28 km as an out-and-back or 25 km for the traverse

Wherever you decide to run, stay safe and have fun!

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