Travel Blog

10 Sep

Captured: Lost Lake

Guest Contributor: James Maruca

Last week in WIA, I took you with me on my first “hike”, to Brandywine Falls.  This week, I discovered another easy walk, right in Whistler Village.  Welcome to my experience of Lost Lake.  I had never heard of Lost Lake before, and you certainly wouldn’t expect a lake of this caliber to be right in the middle of the town.  But this trail led to quite the surprise.


It’s an easy walk along a dirt/gravel road, just park in the Free or Pay parking lots, the trail is right beside the lots on the West side, and just head NW, following the trail signs that say Lost Lake Trail.  Many beauties along the trail such as this old dead tree stump.


Most of the way along the trail, there is a stream running along side, which will keep you company with sounds of water falling, and lapping across the stones, and if you’re lucky, a nice cool breeze coming off of the water.  Several access points along the trail will let you go right down to the stream for some great photo ops.


While I am sure this isn’t an everyday event, I was incredibly lucky to happen upon an annual Tiny Toad Migration.  I saw the signs along the trail near the lake, but wasn’t quite sure what it meant.  Until I saw literally thousands and thousands of Tiny Toads, no bigger than the width of a dime, length of a quarter, hopping all over the road.  It was like playing Frogger In Real Life.  There were some unlucky ones that didn’t make it, but by far, most were getting across the road, and some were even helped along by kids and adults alike who were so thrilled to witness this.  A quick visit to Google tells me this is the juvenile phase of the Western Toad.  The toads are moving from the lake, into the forest where they will mature to 5 – 13cm long.


Once you get to the lake, you can take the higher dirt/gravel trail that turns to your left, but you won’t see much of the lake. Instead, go towards the lake a few meters and there is a sign indicating there is a foot path (no bikes), that meanders along the edge of the lake.  This is where I scored some beautiful photos of some foliage and flowers, and some great shots of the lake itself. This is a huge Skunk Cabbage.  It wasn’t in bloom at the time, I didn’t have to endure the smell.


This pink spray of flowers can also be found along the edge of the lake.  I’m not sure what it is, I have something similar in my garden at home called Plumeria.  Could be related.  Looks like cotton candy, but I didn’t taste to find out.


While GREEN is the predominant color everywhere in BC’s Costal Rainforest, this green fern looks great as a contrast study in black and white.


When I found Lost Lake, I texted my niece to tell her it wasn’t lost anymore, I’d found it.  What can I say, I’m funny!  If you take the foot path, when you get to the back of the lake, you’ll get your best photo ops.  It astounds me to look at this photo, at this lake, and think, this is right in the middle of town.  What other towns are spectacular enough to have a lake this awesome in the middle of their town?


When you are in a coastal rainforest, nothing in nature dies.  This old tree, cut down or fallen down, in the water, now is the life support for grasses, mosses, and shrubs above ground, and it’s leaching nutrients below the surface feeding algaes and water lilies.


You could go to a garden center, spend $200 on a Bonsai pine tree, with a skillfully crafted elevated base surrounding the trunk, with moss carefully placed over the dirt to give the illusion of a lush green carpet.  Or you can come to Lost Lake and see what Mother Nature does for free, with more skill than any master gardener.


More wildflowers around the lake and trail, this one I think is wild Baby’s Breath.


Beautiful back-lit Fireweed.


And to remind us where we live, a stunning Canada Thistle.  I love how in the proximity of Whistler to the Pacific Ocean, this thistle flower looks identical to a Sea Anemone. Next week, come with me on a real nature walk/hike to Cheakamus Lake.

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