Norvan Falls

Fourteen point two kilometres in four hours and forty minutes!  That’s how long it took me to hike this trail!  And despite the aches and pains, and there are aches and pains, it was totally worth it.  The day started off…late.  I slept in.  I was supposed to meet Korri at 9am.  I didn’t wake up till 830am.  There was no way I was going to get to Lynn Headwaters Regional Park by 9am.  So I sent her a text.  Actually I sent it to my brother-in-law first, by accident.  And then I sent Korri a text.  Or so I thought.  I hopped into the shower and was done in 10 minutes.  An incredible feat for me.  And then I had trouble with my water bag, AGAIN.  I could not keep it from leaking.  So I had to ditch the bag.  But now what?  I needed to bring water.  So I raided the emergency earthquake bag.  Yes!  We have one.  Several actually.  Finally I’m in the car and then I get a text from Korri telling me she’s in the parking lot.  Huh?  No mention of me being late.  So I send her another text and then I see it, the tiny grey print:  iMessage.  What the heck is that?  And How do I get back to texting her?  So I call and get her voicemail.  I left her a message hoping that there was cell reception up there.  As I’m speeding along in my car, my phone is bleeping occasionally.  At each stop light I check.  I know, it’s illegal in Vancouver.  She got my voicemail.  She’s updating me about parking, telling me the lot is full.  Take the first available spot I see.  She’s telling me there’s one spot available.  She’s telling me it’s gone.

I managed to get to the parking lot at 9:40am.  And was lucky enough to get a spot just as someone was leaving.  Yay.  We are finally off.  Me, Korri and Bruno.  Poor Bruno.  The first thing he did in the parking lot was ‘nip’ at the ranger.  Poor Korri.  She got a ‘talking to’ by the ranger.  It’s lucky she didn’t get a ticket.  This was all before I even arrived.  So as we walked towards the start of the trail, Bruno was leashed.  But as we got to the start of the trail, there was the sign:  Leash-optional.  So off leash for Bruno.  The first part of the trail was pretty easy going.  We went up Lynn Loop Trail and then stayed left to continue on with Cedar Mill Trail.  And then Korri decided it was time to pick up the pace.  It was okay for awhile but then we started going up hill and the rocky debris made it a bit hard going but not impossible.  And luckily I had Bruno on my side.  He always stopped and waited for me.  What a Good Boy!  I will miss that dog on my future hikes.  We finally get to to this huge debris chute.  It wasn’t until after the hike that I found out that was the emergency landing site for helicopters.  Anyway, from there it was another 3 km to Norvan Falls.  The trail was very well marked.  There were yellow squares nailed into the trees, but really, you cannot get lost.  The trail was very well used.  And every so often, you’ll see posts in the ground telling you how many kilometres you have actually traversed.  There were lots of hikers and runners.  That’s a skill I don’t have.  I would twist my ankle so easily on the rocks, and that’s just from walking.  But to run it?  Not for me, Thanks!  But Bravo to the ones who run the trails!  Finally, We hear the creek and the waterfall.  We were getting close!  And then, there it was.  We climbed up the rocks and peaking through the trees, we could see the top of the waterfall and the creek below.  We were the only ones there.  It was really nice.  And thank goodness I brought water and food.  I was starved.  We stopped for about 30 minutes.  I took a couple of photos, tried to get photos of Bruno with Korri, but Bruno didn’t want to cooperate.  And then it was time to go.  When we left, there were quite a few people arriving.  Heading back, was a lot easier.  And we both thought we would be able to complete the hike just over the 4 hour mark.  But at the emergency landing site, we decided to continue along the Headwaters Trail instead of heading back down Cedar Mills Trail.  I wouldn’t say that it was a bad decision.  But Headwaters Trail definitely was more difficult than Cedar Mills Trail.  There was a lot more up and down on the Headwaters Trail.  And at this point, that meant Bruno had to be leashed.  Well that didn’t happen, at least not till we bumped into the ranger.  Goodness Gracious!  I did not even know he was behind me.  It wasn’t until I slipped on a log and fell on my bum and then I hear someone ask from behind if I was alright.  I was fine, but then later I was thinking, Thank goodness it was a ranger and not some crazy person.  Because we had no idea that he was behind us.  Of course it was the same ranger that Bruno nipped at earlier in the day and again we got a talking to about the dogs being on leash on the more difficult trails.  And that he wasn’t going to give us a ticket but any of the other rangers wouldn’t hesitate to hand out a ticket.  And then he was gone.  Seriously!  What luck is that?  To bump into the same ranger!  And boy was he fast.  He was gone in a flash while the three of us trudged along on the trail.  Even Korri was working up a sweat!  Glad it’s not just me.

Finally we get to another junction.  Keep going straight or turn right to reconnect with the first part of the Lynn Loop Trail.  I chose to turn right, mainly because going straight meant an additional 1.3 km versus the 0.3 km to reconnect with the first part of the Lynn Loop.  Well, I wouldn’t say that it was a bad decision, but if you have knee issues, that tiny 0.3 km of stairs, mostly headed down, well, that’s not so good for anyone’s knees.  And since my knee was not really being my friend on this day, the other choice may have been better.  I think trail junctions should also have descriptions such as:  Turn right, 0.3 km to reconnect but it’s all downhill stairs; or Stay straight for an extra 1.3 km but it’s all up hill.  It might help to make a more informed decision.  But that’s just me.  I’m not sure I’d like 1.3 km of all up hill, but I certainly know my knee did not like 0.3 km of stairs.  Oh well.  That’s what a frozen bag of peas is for.  Anyway, we finally make it down to the Lynn Loop trail and Bruno was freed.  It was pretty much smooth sailing from there.  All in all, it was a good hike.  I liked it and I think I’ll do it again some time later, just to see if I can improve my time and and instead of turning right, I’ll go straight and add an extra 1.3 km just to see how I do.  I’ll have to make sure I have a bag of frozen peas on standby though.  I don’t think I’ve ached this bad since I did the Grouse Grind the first time with Korri four years ago.  And really that was bad back then.  This time it was a general all over ache.  More so in my knee and actually, in my bum, where I landed on the log and I must’ve walked into a fallen tree because I have a pretty tender spot on my thigh and I vaguely remember walking into a tree but didn’t think much of about it till I felt this ‘egg’ in my thigh when I got home.  Still it was a good hike and well worth the effort.  If my blurb doesn’t help you decide, maybe my photos will help you decide if it’s worth the effort.

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At the top of the trail, If you just lean over a little you can see the top of the waterfall.

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If you back track a little, there’s a turnoff that will take you to the bottom of the falls.

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A nice place to stop for lunch!

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I’ve always wanted to be able to take a photo like this. Thanks to that class I took, now I know how!

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Bruno didn’t like the noise of the waterfall. We could not get him to hold still long enough for a photo.

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Time to head back. If you look hard enough, you might see a hobbit just peaking out from behind a tree.

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Debris in Lynn Creek

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Remnants from the old logging days. You can’t really see it in this picture, but the tree is growing out through the cart.

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