GPS track: 22 km, 1,085 m ascent, 5hr43min hiking + 1hr33min stopped = 7hr16min total.
This was a short-notice midweek hike, posted just 3 days in advance after checking the weather forecast. So we enjoyed a beautiful sunny day, with a high of about 22 Celsius in Taylor Meadows, and avoided the weekend crowds in this popular area.
Four of us met at Park Royal North Park & Ride at 8am, and carpooled to the trailhead. We appreciated the paved road from the highway up to the parking lots, the well maintained trail, and the toilets at the trailhead & Garibaldi Lake & Taylor Meadows & Taylor Creek campground.
Although we had occasional rainy days this summer, the forest seemed quite dry, with fewer creeks flowing than usual for this time of year; probably a result of less snow pack from the past winter. Water levels were noticeably low in Barrier Lake and especially Lesser Garibaldi Lake.
No matter how many times we may have hiked there before, the beauty of Garibaldi Lake was breathtaking as ever. Near the camping area, we walked the dry lava-rock connector to the small island, found a shady spot and took it all in over a leisurely lunch.
We would have liked to cap it off by climbing Panorama Ridge for its expansive views, but decided that reaching Taylor Meadows was enough for our energy levels. We completed the loop back to the 6 km junction we had passed earlier, and headed down to the car. Howe Sound Brewery in Squamish was a welcome stop for dinner. That also meant we drove home after Vancouver’s rush hour was over.