The last stand of old growth trees in the lower mainland is located in a quiet park on the edge of West Vancouver. This is where the Burrard Inlet meets Howe Sound and is formally known as Point Atkinson as named by Captain George Vancouver in 1792. Ten kilometres of shaded trails wind their way through 75 hectares of terrain with frequent elevation changes and rocky outcrops that provide amazing views of the surrounding area.
There has been a lighthouse here since 1874. The current building was erected in 1912 and can be seen from several different vantage points throughout the park. No longer requiring manpower, the house I assume was once home for these brave souls still stands and looks lived in. If you could handle the numerous people visiting to view the lighthouse, it would be a fantastic home. Several buildings stand in the park as part of the Department of National Defence and serve as a reminder of the importance that this area played in World War II.
The trees you will find here include Western Hemlock, Douglas Fir, and Western Red Cedar. They stand on rock that varies in age from 96 to 187 million years old! There are numerous animals, birds, lichens, fungi, mosses, insects and sea life that call the park home. The area is extremely fragile and all visitors are asked to remain on the trails. Conditions in the park can be hazardous; cliffs, tree roots and mud all pose serious risks as does the threat of getting lost. It is easier to lose your way than you think so it is suggested that you never wander from the trails and come prepared for the weather.
The park has scattered picnic areas throughout and full facilities. Follow the maps located at the park entrance and look out for the signs throughout the park.