Semaphore Lakes


One of the best options for alpine camping nearish to Vancouver is Semaphore Lakes above the Pemberton Valley. Taking the dirt road to Gold Bridge, the trail head can be found near the summit of the pass on the left side of the road after driving up from the valley. An hour hike puts you in the alpine and completes most of the elevation gain with a further 30 minutes to the first of many good tent sites. Small but scenic salamander filled ponds sit in full view of glacier packed peaks and waterfalls.

The short distance to the camp site meant that we were much more willing to carry the luxuries of booze, wine, fresh pasta and camping chairs. There was also plenty of dead wood for camp fires. We enjoyed home made pesto with olives, sun-dried tomatoes and grated pecorino pepato for dinner washed down with red and white wine, beer and some choice tequila brought back from Mexico.

The peak of Locomotive Mountain is only a further 2 hours down the trail and features scrambling beside glaciers and scenic views of Pemberton valley.

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