VANCOUVER DAY TWO: GROUSE MOUNTAIN

Grouse Mountain Resort is a major tourist attraction a 25-minute bus ride from Vancouver. 4,000+ Feet at its peak, it is a popular skiing destination. Public access to the mountain top is by an aerial tramway or a 1.8 mile hiking trail known as the Grouse Grind that is known for its high degree of difficulty—average grade of 17 degrees with some up to 30, and a total of 2,830 stairs. Needless to say, we took the tram.

Tramway up to Grouse Mountain Resort

Tramway up to Grouse Mountain Resort

"Grouse Grind" map

“Grouse Grind” m

The Resort is open year-round, with four chairlifts and 26 runs in the winter. In summer, it features a scenic chairlift ride to the peak with its fabulous views of Greater Vancouver. From there, adventure seekers can take a ziplining adventure and do some tandem paragliding. We did neither; however, the tandem paragliding looked really cool and has been added to our bucket list!

Chairlift to the Peak

Chairlift to the Peak

Tandem paragliding -- our newest Bucket List item

Tandem paragliding — our newest Bucket List item

We had lunch at Altitudes Bistro, a viewpoint restaurant with really good food. I had probably the best ever seafood pasta featuring local shrimp, scallops, and salmon…yum! There is also a cafe featuring cafeteria-style food.

Two 14-yr old brown bears, Grinder and Coola, live in a refuge near the chairlift—they were found as orphans and grew up there, so are used to having people gawk at them; it appeared at times they were actually posing for pictures.

Grinder the bear (or is it Coola?)

Grinder the bear (or is it Coola?)

Former EPA tree hugger gets tree hugged!

Former EPA tree hugger gets tree hugged!

eagle sculpture
Along the pathway between the resort and the chairlift, is a series of amazing sculptures carved from redwood trees. There’s also a rather corny lumberjack show.

When we got back downtown, we went to Bellaggio Cafe a dockside restaurant we had visited last year drinks and some fried calamari. It overlooks the Cruise Terminal docks and there was a ship in port; that made us think of our upcoming cruise to Alaska on the Celebrity Millennium coming up in a few days.

Back at the apartment, we enjoyed leftovers from yesterday’s “feast” and talked about tomorrow’s plan: visiting Stanley Park.

[Written while cruising, posted from Seward]

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