The trail climbs steeply up through large timber. It is muddy and there is a fair bit of deadfall on the trail. After about 1.3 km, you enter into the meadows and the trail levels out. Once out in the open you get views of Brandywine behind a couple of smaller peaks and a glacier. Follow the creek to near the headwaters. You can cut up the vegetated slope to the west or carry on to the talus slopes further north. Head up the talus slopes to circumnavigate a small peak around the west side. Watch for cairns once you reach the pass. Gain the ridge that runs roughly north. Follow this around to the summit.
Once on the talus, the trail gets increasingly rougher. The rocks you walk on get larger and as you near the top, they get sharper.
At the top you will have excellent views of Mount Fee, Rainbow Mountain, Whistler, Black Tusk, and many others. You can also look down into the valley you ascended and truly appreciate the elevation gain you achieved.
There is GPS data attached to this trail (see "download GPS"), which if loaded into your GPS can help you find route points.
Updated October 2010
From the south, drive Hwy 99 to Brandywine Fall Provincial Park and continue past. Approximately 2.7km past Brandywine Falls Provincial Park is an exit for Callahan Valley Road and Whistler Olympic Park. Take this exit and reset your odometer.
800m turn left on Brandywine Mountain Forest Service Road.
Continue to 1.4km where there is a hut / parking gate on the left side. The road forks at this point. Stay to the left just past this parking gate as the road opens up to a large open gravel parking lot. Drive through this gravel area to the far side.
2.1km there will be a snowmobile club on the left hand side, continue driving along the road.
2.3km the road narrows from 2 lanes to 1.
3.2km the road opens up a bit with deactivated roads on either side of the main road, continue along BMFSR.
4.8km there is a fork in the road, stay right.
Just before a fork at 6.4km there is a sign on the left hand side indicating you are leaving the Whistler Community Area. Stay left at the fork. (The right hand option is marked as BR 2100.)
6.5km there is another fork, stay right.
7.2km you will pass a chain link gate on the right with a "6.0km" marker on it. Continue past this gate and drive up a steep hill.
8.5km you arrive at the Brandywine Mountain Trail Head.
Drive up the road past Blackcomb Snowmobile Tours to approximately km 6.5. Do not make any turns. This is the first parking area. If you and/or your vehicle are more adventurous, continue up the narrowing road for another 1 km and park just before crossing the creek. There is a BC Forest Service signpost that marks the start of the trail on the right as you drive up.
There is possible alternative parking area that would eliminate the slog up through the forest. Refer to the topo map and any other resources you may have to decide how to get there.
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Posted By: beyondthebottomleft
- Tue May 31 03:00:23 UTC 2016
UpsideTechnical, challenging hike up to the meadows. Lots of creeks and tree roots to navigate, making it an exciting trail. The constant sound of the river makes for a nice backdrop. DownsideWe were unable to complete the hike due to too much snow, and the trail being under construction. The steep trail is not particularly well marked. Would highly recommend a 4x4 even to get to the lower parking lot, or at least make sure your car has a lot of clearance. We decided to ditch our car about a kilometer short of the trailhead and walked the rest of the way in. CommentWe aimed to just head up to the meadows and back this past weekend, but as we approached the top we ran into several feet of snow with meltwater rushing underneath. If you had hiking poles, and lots of time to slowly navigate your way safely, this might be doable, but we opted not to take the risk and turned back early.
The trail itself is very steep, and there are lots of tree roots, rocks, and creeks to navigate (prepare to walk through a lot of muddy/wet terrain if you go early in the season!). Keep your head up â?? we lost the trail a number of times. That being said, it makes for a super fun hike.
The old boardwalks that you reach as the trail gets marshy near the top were in the middle of being replaced when we went (this is where we turned back. Be wary of posts and exposed screws that are buried in the snow if you head up within the next couple of weeks). Definitely looking forward to going up again later in the season when the snow is gone, and the new boardwalks are in place.
Despite not making it to the meadows, the views of Mt Fee and Black Tusk were incredible. Budget an extra ten minutes at the beginning of the hike to cut right and climb down to the river. Sitting on the rocks and logs and watching the water rage by is an incredible experience.
Date Hiked: May 29, 2016
Posted By: Mickael71
- Mon Aug 03 15:48:05 UTC 2015
UpsideBeautiful spot for an overnight camping, not crowded. beautiful views and glaciers DownsideLike Kzfo said, the trail after the meadows are not well marked, just follow the cairns... Can get chilly during the night even in a 30 degrees day. The road to reach the lower parking can be challenging for a 2wd, as I have a corolla 2001, I had to stop about 1.5km before the lower parking CommentCouple snow patches up there.
Posted By: kzfo
- Wed Nov 13 02:56:14 UTC 2013
UpsideThe best hike I had this summer. The view is incredible (Mount Fee and all other surrounding fantastic views). DownsidePretty challenging hike (seemed more than 12km round-trip), partly because there isn't a good established trail on the scree area. In this area, I've lost a lot more energy than expected. There isn't a good trail mark around this region either. You may need good map reading/pathfinding ability or GPS. From the trailhead to the meadow, it can be badly muddy and slippery especially after the rain. Hike this area after a long streak of sunny days. CommentIf you pick a good day, the meadow would be filled with beautiful flowers, and yet the pick area would be still covered with snow. So wonderful scenery!!
Posted By: alexthealex
- Thu Sep 06 00:16:20 UTC 2012
Upsidegreat views, interesting hike, beautiful flowers. there is hardly any snow now but tons of blackflies Downsidefinding the trailhead was difficult. follow the directions in the description until you see a "chocolate bowl sign" where you should make a right. go straight through the next fork and you will reach the last fork. turn left and go through a narrow opening in the road and it will lead you to the trailhead near the meadows. you will need a 4x4 for sure
Posted By: outdoorsnut
- Wed Jul 18 01:24:32 UTC 2012
QuestionHi, looking at hiking up to brandywine mountain September 1st. Never done this before. Any recent trail info? ie. snow, mosquitos? ANSWERS are in this forum: brandywine mountain
Posted By: mbest
- Fri Aug 28 01:45:48 UTC 2009
UpsideGorgeous views. Some minor scrambling once you reach mid-mountain, although this is mostly because it was still covered in snow. DownsideTons of mosquitoes!! Some people chose to camp in the valley. Not entirely a bad idea, but can be done in a day easily. We went mid-August 2007....pretty much the entire mountain was covered in snow. All we had was boots. We made it half way before stopping for lunch. Those without crampons and proper footwear didn't make it to the summit. Some people tried, and we saw them fall down the mountain at least 20 meters, just missing a massive rock face. About 3 people looked stuck, so another hiker with gear came back to help. I'm assuming it isn't like this most years as I haven't seen other pics with as much snow as we went through!!
I'll definitely be back again! CommentStep back road if you go up to the final parking lot (gas up!), but trail is fairly logical to follow. Enjoy!
Posted By: Adam+Laura
- Fri Aug 07 17:59:51 UTC 2009
CommentWe did this about 4 years ago, it was an incredible hike.
No one was in the area, the trail was beautiful we plan on going again soon.
Posted By: DeepCoveMike
- Fri Jul 24 04:55:45 UTC 2009
CommentAs you end the misery of the vertical trail to the bottom of the meadows the world opens up and the view up the meadows to Brandywine Mountain is stunning.
Strangely I've found the view equally stunning when we've driven to the top of the clear cut right for a short and easy walk to the meadows. (good clearance required, 4x4 preferred, fairly rough decomissioned fsr)
This leaves more time to hike the route to the ridge that leads to Brandwine mountain.
The trail in the meadows is almost always spongy and moist. Obviously perfect for breeding bugs early in the season. Take your bug hat, or be prepared to eat you rlunch walking away from the swarms you will atract.
Posted By: Adam+Laura
- Fri Jan 05 07:08:03 UTC 2007
UpsideIncredible hike, and beautiful meadows. We just went up to the meadow and back again. The valley is beautiful to explore, this would be a great place to camp. DownsideThis is a non looping trail. And it is moderate difficulty, not for the out of shape. CommentIt was a little difficult to find, but worth it.
Posted By: wanderlust
- Wed Jul 27 22:43:02 UTC 2005
UpsideGorgeous river valley - fun trail up with crazy obstacles (mud, deadlfall, balancing acts) and great summit scramble. DownsideOh my god - bugs! I've never seen so many mosquitoes (dawn and dusk - camped) and I've been to the Yukon. Got 12 - 12!!! bugs in my eye. Sick. CommentNot a hard hike - a hoof with an overnight bag, but no more than 1.5 hours of vertical. My cruddy 86 civic made it to km 5 (a fence gate with 5km sign on it) so you can too.
Posted By: mountaingirl
- Thu Jul 07 22:35:45 UTC 2005
UpsideI don't remember this trail being particularly difficult and it's a relatively short hike in. Beautiful area... lots of fun scrambling. Downsidesnowmobile debris.. can get REALLY wet in the meadow if it's raining and/or early in the season.
Posted By: anwon
- Mon Nov 01 08:04:42 UTC 2004
CommentThis area is managed by the Ministry of Forests, not BC Parks (who manage Brandywine Falls Provincial Park, a few kilometres further south on Hwy 99). Road to km 6 is maintained to excellent 2WD standard by Rockwell International who operate an IPP there. A steep hill just beyond km 6 requires 4x4 with moderate clearance. Logging tapes appeared on the trail a few years ago.
Posted By: Kmarshall
- Sun Sep 26 01:20:43 UTC 2004
UpsideGrouse Grind can kiss my butt. You want a view you want the hike well this is it. Unreal there are no words to describe God's Beauty. This hike is the best hike I have ever done. DownsideThere is no downside. Except it is straight up and straight down.This is not for the weak of heart and you must pack a day pack and be prepared. It is a workout with a wonderful amazing reward at the top CommentThe dogs loved it we loved it 2hrs up 2hrs down. No sweat hahah. YOu are going to need to bring lots of water. The hike is a work out.It is incredible amazing the hardest hike I have ever down. Litterally straight up and straight down. But the Glacier the Lake the meadows the flowers the horsefly's wow wowo wow. Take a lunch travel early.Aug is when we went and I am not disappointed. Look ma I am on top of the world. this is a must do and see. You will never go back to the Grind.
Posted By: trailpeak
- Mon Aug 02 06:53:14 UTC 2004
Upsidemeadow on a sunny day - see the warmer looknig pics of the meadow Downsideit's a steep grunt from the parking area, which itself is a challenge to find - you have to push on through a small maze of logging road - in questinoable repair, is B.C. parks slipping? CommentThe GPS attached may help with parking, and, generally stay on the main road, gerat meadows, we didn't hike up the mountain, starting at 3:30 p.m. we reached the meadow in late July around 6 p.m. - didn't stay up too long.
Posted By: garbagegirl
- Tue Aug 12 19:37:55 UTC 2003
CommentNote that the forest service road is closed to traffic due to construction. It is scheduled to reopen on Aug. 31, 03 but expect later.