Falling for Waterfalls along the Sea to Sky

Fall has always been my favourite season for a road trip most parks are still open, the crowds thin out, and the temperatures are mild. Waterfalls always make for an exciting stop on any road trip and the perfect opportunity to stretch your legs. The best part is waterfalls are incredible in any season, I mean what’s more fascinating than a frozen waterfall? If you are hitting the road this fall season (or any season). I have compiled a list of four waterfalls along the sea-to-sky that are worth a quick pit stop.

Photo by Widelenswyattwww.widelenswyattphotography.com

Brandywine Falls

A freefalling waterfall, Brandywine drops into a classic bowl carved from the rock below. Spectacular views of the falls and of Daisy Lake can be seen from designated viewing platforms. Only a 10 – 15 minute walk from the parking area and just off the sea to sky highway, it isn’t one to miss.

Hiking difficulty: Easy

Accessibility: Easy, railway crossing

How to get there: North of Squamish on Highway 99 towards whistler, turn left for the parking area which is visible from the highway.

Shannon Falls

This waterfall will draw you in from miles away. Seen all the way from downtown Squamish, Shannon Falls is the third highest waterfall in all of British Colombia. The water drops off the steep bare rock off the mountainside, cascading down for a total of 1099ft. The trail up to the waterfall is a 350m gravel pathway leading to a boardwalk for viewing the falls, but the best view of the entire waterfall is from the parking lot. Shannon Falls Provincial Park also includes a picnic area and a network of well-maintained trails to explore.

Hiking difficulty: Easy

Accessibility: Some stairs

How to get there: North on Highway 99 around 58km from Vancouver, follow signs for Shannon Falls Provincial Park and turn right off the highway. 

Photo by April Blumberg. @aperturebyapril

Nairns Falls

Unique rock formations make this waterfall special, complete with small potholes and natural rock bridges. The dark bare rock juts out in various places, forcing the water down into narrow passages, pooling before dropping again. The dark-coloured bare rock contrasts beautifully with the surrounding forest’s deep green shades and the river water’s light blue. The hike to get there is 1.5km along a well-marked trail that brings you to the viewing platform. 

Hiking Difficulty: Easy

Accessibility: Moderate, narrow trail with some roots and rocks throughout

How to get there: North of Whistler on Highway 99, head towards Pemberton. Roughly 28km from the Whistler Village turn-off. Signs direct you into the provincial park. The parking is visible from the highway.

Alexander Falls

These falls drop three times in a stunning wide cascade, the rushing river framed by a rich evergreen forest.  The viewing platform is to the right of the parking area which gives you a birdseye view of the entire 141 feet drop. The Alexander Falls Recreation Site also provides a picnic area.

Hiking Difficulty: Easy

Accessibility: Easy

How to get there: North of Highway 99, turn left onto Callahan Valley access road, follow for 8km then turn left when you see the sign for Alexander Falls. 


Planning a road trip? Check out our featured trails: Whistler’s Train Wreck Trail and Garibaldi Park



About April Blumberg 9 Articles
Originally from Ontario, April relocated to British Colombia and has worked in outdoor and tourism industries across the province. A certified plant nerd, she loves sharing her knowledge and passion for nature with others. April is also an avid traveller with 15 countries under her belt, she loves nothing more than a good road trip in her self-built campervan. While at home, April enjoys snowboarding at her local ski resort, hiking and backpacking trips, getting out on the water and spending time with her retired sled dog Burton.