This is a very technical trail, the ascent up Black Mountain is steep and features a few scrambling sections. Water is available at the mid-way point at Cypress Bowl ski area.
The trail is the site of the annual Knee Knacker Race
, a trail ultra marathon held each summer.
This is the 1st half of the Baden Powell Trail
, a point to point trail beginning in Horseshoe Bay and ending in Deep Cove in North Vancouver. The first half of the trail features the high point, at the top of Black Mountain. The end of the West Vancouver portion of the trail is Cleveland Dam, which is the natural crossing point from West Vancouver to North Vancouver.
The trailhead for the Baden Powell is by the Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal, so many runners will choose to start at the Whyte Lake Trail
, which has better parking, and connects to the Baden Powell about a kilometre in.
The trail climbs steadily to Eagle Bluffs at the 6km mark, then to Black Mountain around 9 kilometres. The Baden Powell actually loops beneath the Black Mountain summit, but if you have covered all the distance (and elevation) it is recommended that you take the extra few steps to reach the summit. From the summit, the trail descends quickly into the Cypress ski area, and the ski trails and lifts will be visible. Take a minute to fill your water bottles at the summit, then climb back up the side of Hollyburn Mountain before a steep descent through the cross-country ski area and the famous Hollyburn chute.
At the bottom of the hill, you'll join the Skyline Trail
at the powerlines. There are a few tricky navigation sections here, as the trail is alternately marked Skyline Trail
, TCT (Trans-Canada Trail) and Baden Powell Trail
. As long as you are on one of these you'll be fine, and will come out into the British Properties before crossing three roads, and descending along the power line right of way to the Cleveland Dam.