Hanging Lake and Rainbow Mountain

A sunny weekend in August and the Coast Mountains can be busy.  For the second time (the last about three years ago) we thought we’d try camping at Hanging Lake again. Hanging Lake is just west of the popular Rainbow Lake; camping is allowed here but not at Rainbow, which is the water supply for Whistler.

This time we decided to hike the back way from the trailhead off the Madeley Lake forest service road.  This trail is surprisingly pleasant through mature forest with some big hemlocks, and the trail is in good condition.  There are only a few places where you need to pay attention, including a short section up through a boulder field.

We arrived at Hanging Lake and once again there was only one other couple camping.  More importantly, a nice pit toilet has replaced the one that had been destroyed by a falling tree!

Hanging Lake seemed prettier than before – nice flowers by the inlet stream and good view west across the valley towards Brandywine and Powder Mountain. It was rather buggy though.

In the morning we headed up to Rainbow Lake and started to scramble up the boulder field towards the summit of Rainbow Mountain. The views as we climbed were excellent. Unfortunately, we had not looked in detail at the routes, and it was clear that we should have taken a different approach, so we ate lunch and dropped back the the lake – try again another day.  Afterwards we broke camp and dropped down to the car.

On the way home we stopped at a very busy Howe Sound Brewing in Squamish – it was as good as ever and we stocked up on Best Bitter.

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