Grouse Grind to reopen earlier than usual

The Grouse Grind Trail in North Vancouver will officially reopen public access a month earlier than last year due to warm weather conditions.

In a release Friday, Metro Vancouver said it is “excited to welcome” hikers back for the season, starting Saturday, April 27, following completion of annual maintenance.

The federal and provincial governments provided $3.5 million for ongoing trail and site improvements for “The Grind.” The chair of Metro Vancouver’s board of directors, George Harvie, says it “still offers the challenge people crave.”

This year’s upgrades include a new trailhead entrance, replacement of a footbridge, new seating, a water fountain, stretching bars, and changes that allow better access for first responders.

“The changes to the Grouse Mountain Regional Park trailhead are transformative. Not only is the area more welcoming and attractive, it responds to the needs of hikers by giving them space to warm up for their big climb, fill their water bottles, and get familiar with the park maps,” said Vice Chair John McEwen.

Located in Grouse Mountain Regional Park, the trail attracts 250,000 visitors per year, despite its notorious difficulty.

Metro Vancouver says “unseasonably” warm and dry weather this year means it is able to open the trail early, but also that hikers should remain vigilant for for behaviours that may cause wildfires.

Starting Saturday, the trail will open daily from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. An all-day closure on Monday, April 29, is planned for work related to the construction of a new gondola.