Campbell Lake Trail, hike to lookout

We tried to hike to Campbell Lake earlier this summer but due to time shortage had to turn back shortly after the 2km marker. This time around, we started earlier since we were camping near by and with good weather and a bit of wind blowing went on to get to the top. Did we make it or did it turned to another "attempt"? Read on to find out. I can only tell you that plans don't always work out the way you plan them :).

Harrison Hot Springs
Near to:
Harrison Lake
Round Trip:
about 7km
Elevation Gain:
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The trail starts pretty steep going up on the old gravel road and changes to what appears to be an old riverbed. Some people actually call this trail Harrison Grind due to its steep sections. This trail can be quite slippery on a rainy day and should be taken seriously. After about half an hour, the terrain will change to overgrown bushes where you really have to watch your steps due to the rocky surface of the trail and multiple drops. Don't let this boring section stop you because you are not far from the entry to the forest. Once you reach the tower, go around on the right side and you are entering a beautiful old forest. The first part of this section is pretty easy to navigate but due to heavy snow and tree falls, many sections have bee rerouted and not that easy to find at first. Just keep finding your next orange marker and a bit of common sense helps to navigate around fallen logs. After the 2km mark, the trail gets steeper. There are a couple of old makeup bridges you'll need to get across and will have to get over a few big boulders. Since my dog was with me, we had to improvise in some areas to get him across. I do believe just shortly after the 2km mark my iphone froze together with my Trails app and I was not able to trace our hike. Furthermore, I was planning to use it to take pictures and video once we reached the lookout. Unfortunately I wasn't able to restart or turn it off and have nothing to share from the lookout. Altogether I think it is about 3.5km to get to the clearing that overlooks Harrison lake. From that point, it looks like the trail descends to the lake but we decided not to bother at this time (I was told there isn't anything spectacular to see and plus we couldn't take any pictures to prove otherwise). We went back to the lookout and had our treats!
To get there from Vancouver, take Highway #7 and follow all the way to Harrison Hot Springs. Once on the Hot Springs road, watch for Balsam Ave intersection on your right and the information board on your left. Turn left and park. You'll notice a sign on the gates indicating the trail head of Campbell Lake trail. Good luck!


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