Summer has arrived and its time to plan out your Squamish hikes. One of the truly overlooked breathtaking trails in the areas is the Slhaney. Photographers often venture down its expanse to snap unparalleled views of the surrounding area. Located in the Stawamus Chief Provincial Park, this 14.5-kilometer trail is a bit difficult and will take you approximately six hours to traverse, but you’ll be happy that you undertook the jaunt.
The History of the Slhaney Name
The Slhaney trail was once known s the Stawamus Squaw, but most people considered the name sexist and a tad bit racist, so it was changed a few years ago. However, locals still often refer to it by its previous handle.
Hiking the Slhaney Trail
You’ll hook up with the Slhaney trailhead from either the Shannon Falls or the Stawamus Chief parking lots. You’ll see the trailhead clearly marked. To start the hike you will climb some old wood stains and head straight up to the Chief Peaks Trail. You’ll pass by the Olesen Creek Bridge. If you look to your right then you will see the Upper Shannon Falls Trail. At the very next junction, you will veer right and follow the trail until you reach the Chief’s Third Peak. Be sure to take a few minutes to admire the unique beauty of the Cirque of the Uncrackables climbing area.
Proceed on to the next fork and then go and head left. You will see a sign that states ‘Valley’. This is the older clifftop Slhaney trailhead. You’ll arrive at an outstanding view of the Third Peak. After this, the trail becomes narrow and has steep slopes so watch your step. Eventually, you’ll climb to yet another wonderful viewpoint. You’ll be able to see the impressive Chief, Murchison, and Lapworth on the other side of the Squamish River. You can even make out Crumpit Woods which rests behind the Valleycliff neighborhood.
If you look around, you’ll see bolts emerging from the hilltop which indicates you are at the climbing route of the Slhaney. Continue on to an old logging road and then take a left at the Valley sign. Be prepared because the final stretch of the trail becomes a bit rough and steep. Once you reach the top, why not have a rest and enjoy the view before you head back? You will return the same way that you came. This trail does not loop.
Bring Your Dog on the Slhaney Trail
The Slhaney trail is well marked. Its the perfect daytime excursion. Also, you are welcome to bring along your four-legged friend as long as he is on a leash. Be sure to pack water and bowl for the pooch because the trail is hard work for two or four feet.