Coquitlam Lake View via Saw Blade Falls

July 16, 2017

The Woodland Walk Trail is located in Coquitlam in Pinecone Burke Provincial Park and starts from a metal gate at the end of Harper Road, just before the PoCo & District Hunting & Fishing Club so don't be alarmed if you hear a lot of gunfire.

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Metal Gate at Harper Road

Take your very first left into the forest just meters up from the metal gate. This is a bike trail better know as "Garbage" so watch out for mountain bikers.

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Garbage Mountain Bike Route

The trail emerges onto a gravel road. A sign post says, Woodland Walk that enters the forest. Go back into the forest and follow this trail.

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Back into the forest

Within 10 minutes or so, the trail reaches a clearing underneath a set of BC Hydro power lines. The area has been opened up in recent years as BC Hydro expands the power lines. Go left and follow the gravel road underneath the power lines, continuing across the bridge over Prichard Creek.

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So this is the tricky part, if you follow this road along you will see the Trailhead on your right (it's well marked). It says Woodland Walk Loop Trail/Upper Trail.

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But in my case, I prefer to follow a mountain bike route called "Nescafe" that is just 75 meters after crossing the bridge. There are not signs so you need to look carefully for a path leaving the road.

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Nescafe Mountain Bike Route

At the end of Nescafe, you will reach the CLTV Lower West Fork. Go left and at certain point just ignore the Woodland Walk Trail Viewpoint and instead look for the Falls sign 50 metres away.

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Coquitlam Lake View Trail (CLVT) Lower West Fork

As you can see, the network of trails on Burke is large and complex. Some date back to the logging days in the early 1900's, when it was known as Dollar Mountain.

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Saw Blade Falls

Saw Blade Falls is a great hike if you’re pressed for time. But if you have an extra few hours to spare just follow the Saw Blade Trail towards Coquitlam Lake Viewpoint Trail.

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Going up on Saw Blade Trail

Very often the silence is disturbed by staccato from the nearby gun range but this can be quickly ignored by the waterfalls, massive stumps and occasional logging artifacts. 

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Yummy!

Once you finish Saw Blade Trail, go left and very soon you will pass a small waterfall and see the signs for the viewpoint.

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Unexpected rain was an obstacle for clear views of Coquitlam Lake, one of the three main water sources for Metro Vancouver. 

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Coquitlam Lake and Eagle Mountain covered by clouds

It is also a part of BC Hydro's power generation system. A tunnel directs water from the lake to nearby Buntzen Lake, and from there to a pair of power stations.  

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Alex Fraser Bridge

On your way back retrace your steps all the way down to Saw Blade Falls and this time follow the "Woodland Walk Trail Viewpoint" sign and go downhill.  

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Fungus growing on tree

You will see Woodland Walk Falls which is at its best during spring runoff.

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Woodland Walk Falls

Follow the path and very soon you will be walking on the Lower Loop Trail that will take you back to the gravel road.  

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A huge stump along the Lower Loop of the Woodland Trail

Statistics

To Saw Blade Falls:
Distance: 3.88 km (one way)
Time: 1:20:00
Elevation Gain: 274 m
Min Elevation: 341 m
Max Elevation:586 m


To Saw Blade Falls

From Saw Blade Falls to Viewpoint:
Distance: 3.30 km (one way)
Time: 1:24:00
Elevation Gain: 386 m
Min Elevation: 579 m
Max Elevation:953 m


From Saw Blade Falls to Viewpoint

From Viewpoint to Trailhead :
Distance: 6.78 km (one way)
Time: 2:24:00
Elevation Loss: 605 m


From Viewpoint to Trailhead