There are 3 lakes to view on the Joffre Lakes circuit. This is a beautiful hike that is not too challenging. At the trailhead there is a large scale map of the area and the hike. Follow the Joffre Alpine Trail as you veer right past the first lake (lower Joffre Lake), and then follow the trail as you cross Joffre Creek and then start to climb. You will pass Middle lake on the right, Upper Joffre Lake on the left. If you were to continue you would find yourself at the bottom of the Matier Glacier, which is spectacular. You are rewarded with awesome views on most of your hike. Great on a sunny afternoon - Sun, Ice, Rock, and lunch!
Note: Be aware of the potential for icefall here. Some campers overnight in this area. Falling ice may have the potential to overrun the campsite. To get to the trail-head, when approaching Pemberton from Whistler (from the South), turn right at the T-junction, towards Mount Currie. In town, turn right again towards Duffey Lake and Lillooet, you will travel along a gravel road along the Lillooet River, crossing to the north side river just before Lillooet Lake. The road climbs steeply (paved), follow this and continue a short distance to the BC Parks Joffre Lake parking area, where the first picture below was taken (and waypoint #1 was marked). Details:Waypoint #1 is Parking & Trailhead, #2 is 1St Lake stream Junction and viewpoint of trail to Upper Joffre, #4 is base of rock fall scramble, #5 is 2nd Lake and Glacier view, #6 & #7 are viewpoints on s/w side of Lake looking at Glacier, #8 is s/w end of Lake, #9 is lunch spot on Rocks, the end! Use download GPS to download these waypoints in G7TOWIN format for download into your GPS unit.Waypoints are WGS84, and are repeated here (although track and points available from download file soon):
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Posted By: Princesspants
- Thu Jun 14 17:39:42 EDT 2012
Has anyone been up the trial recently? Looking to find out about the conditiona and snow levels?
PrincessANSWERS are in this forum: Trail Conditions
Posted By: jtrek
- Sun Jun 10 19:50:44 EDT 2012
Anyone been in lately? Curious about amount of snow still on ground at the lakes level.
cheers johnANSWERS are in this forum: Joffre Lakes
Posted By: TheDagda
- Fri Aug 26 23:53:17 EDT 2011
UpsideIt's one of the only dog friendly parks left and it's an amazing time for you and your little buddy, and it's free camping.
DownsideWayyyyyy to many mosquitos
CommentIt's easily one of the best hikes I've been on. There's something to be said about having everything you need to survive for 3 days tied to your back and scrambling over boulders and up steap inclines for 5.5 km. All said and done, it's a great frickin time. and if you can afford the extra little bit of weight in your pack, throw in a couple of beers to drink up at the glacier. I'll be the best beer you ever tasted.
Can't wait to go back.
Posted By: TheDagda
- Fri Aug 19 18:06:11 EDT 2011
QuestionHeading up on tuesday morning and just wondering if anybody wants to go. Coming back on thursday, gonna go up the glacier on wednesday.ANSWERS are in this forum: Anybody wanna Go next week?
Posted By: arkitekt
- Sun Jul 11 18:29:45 EDT 2010
UpsideA beautiful trail with a wide variety of terrain and trail type. It's definitely a high use trail, but the excellent local parks ranger keeps up on trail maintenance with help from hikers (grab a rock!) and summer crews. Last summer I helped him build a nice viewing platform at the middle lake to keep bank erosion to a minimum.
CommentRemember to keep your dogs on a leash! This is a busy trail. There are lots of other hikes around if you want to let Fido run around.
Posted By: Dinara
- Thu Oct 08 20:39:30 EDT 2009
Upsidegreat hike with beautiful views, moderate to easy
Downsidecouple of stone fields who are very tricky and slippery in this season
CommentI love this trail. We did it last monday (oct.5th) and stayed over night. There was snow at the upper lake and it was -3C but it was still great!!! I can only recommend this trail.
Posted By: cpbc
- Thu Jun 04 17:26:53 EDT 2009
QuestionLooking for an update on the current conditions, trail condition, bugs, etc. Welcome your comments.ANSWERS are in this forum: Hiking Joffre this weekend
Posted By: toonse
- Sun Feb 08 23:32:09 EST 2009
UpsideGorgerous scenery, one of the most impressive places I have ever camped. Going up to the glacier is quite humbling.
DownsideThe mosquitoes ate us alive until it got cold enough that they fled.
No campfires allowed.
CommentSome amazing photo opportunities
Posted By: awallwork
- Mon Jan 26 14:37:01 EST 2009
UpsideCamping was great - took a group of Scouts winter camping - even in the parking lot it was nice and quiet (although cold)
DownsideTrail was difficult to follow with ski marks all over the place providing confusion
CommentA nice winter trip but be prepared for the elements - it got very cold at night (-26)
Posted By: trailrunner
- Sun Sep 16 22:45:47 EDT 2007
UpsidePretty lakes. Several neat bridges. Diversed path from extremely well tamed track and field path, root-meshmash, rock hopping jamboree.
DownsideThe fact there is apparently no path to get to the peaks you admire from the lake shore. Not clear where is the end point of the hike to the upper lake - makes you think you went past it - until you actually get there.
CommentIt starts with extremely well maintained flat path like you see in Eastern Canada's Jackpine Boreal forest paths, then it turns to fully rooty path, then followed by a fairly long hopping big white rocks area. Two relatively steep sections and I did walk; first one for two minutes, second one for half a minute or so. Large majority of running up is a crawling to jog speed as they are either steep or too rocky to go fast or both. 2nd lake is rather suddenly comes into view. Then you go past the second lake for 1km or less and get to the upper lake. But there is no sign and the trail drags on for at least 500m or more on West side of the lake with some view through the trees. Eventually you reach Heli-pad sign and Outhouse on the lake side. It was a weekday, but there were lots of people there. Also it was a beautiful sunny day - not a single cloud. Joffre lakes are pretty, but I recall Lake Louise was more impressive. A return trip took 1:20 or 1:40 including 20min break, with about the 45(uphill)-35(downhill)min split like taken. I went fairly fast, so was rather surprised it took that long. As this trail is simply hard to go fast except at the very beginning, so breaking 1:00 would be hard even for a fast runner. Definitely nice to be able to climb those peaks near by, but not trails seem to be there. May be because of the fact there is snow or glacier covering up the peak most of the time?
Posted By: dwatts
- Tue Aug 07 00:58:02 EDT 2007
DownsideCrowds of people outnumber crowds of bugs!
CommentThis is a strenuous hike with a pack for the weekend. The boulder field between lower and middle lake is tricky if you aren't sure footed. It was also a trick to find the trail at the end of the middle lake, too many bits of flagging tape and trail markers! On the August long weekend there were dozens and dozens of dayhikers, not many who understood hiking etiquette, not a good place to go to get away from it all! Lots of people hiking with off leash dogs that scamper around your legs creating their own hazard! Definately avoid this trip on a holiday weekend!
Posted By: Adam+Laura
- Fri Jan 05 02:11:13 EST 2007
UpsideIncredible veiws and feeling up here. There were lots of campers.
DownsideLook out for ticks, and we helped one lady get helicoptered out she broke her leg. It is a tough hike not for beginers.
Posted By: opus
- Mon Oct 03 01:30:35 EDT 2005
UpsideBeautiful views (lakes and glacier) and a great workout.
DownsideBugs...in August, we got eaten close to the 2nd lake.
CommentOne of my favorites. It is a high reward vs. effort hike that can easily be accomplished in a day split between a relaxing lunch break at the top.
Posted By: Clucoid
- Fri Aug 19 02:29:24 EDT 2005
UpsideFairly easy trail with some spectacular views of the lakes and the glaciers. Nice campsite at the end of the upper lake.
DownsideMaybe the crowds, but it seemed to of thinned out by the time I reached the upper lake.
CommentAwesome views at Upper Lake. From the campsite you can hike up a route for about 30 mins to the Matier glacier. Very impressive close-up. From there you can see all three lakes you passed.
Posted By: Capri
- Mon Jun 13 15:08:14 EDT 2005
CommentDoes anyone know if the lower lakes trail is snow free now, 6/12/05? Is there camping nearby? I saw camping in two provincial parks in Squamish, but one park says it's closed because of nesting birds.
Posted By: Kmarshall
- Sat Sep 25 20:58:40 EDT 2004
UpsideSpectacular Scenery, Unbelievable views no matter where you look Dogs can take this trail as well as long as they are well behaved and you pick up after them. Leashes or non leash is okay use caution but we took our dogs and they loved it Blue heeler and australian shepard
DownsideIs there really a downside. If I can do it anyone can. Maybe a bit crowded on weekends but hey it is worth it
CommentUnreal I can not believe that you only have to walk 10 min to the first Glacier. Take a camera be prepared upper lake is windy. Start early let people know where you are going. Dogs loved it. Great hike amazing views awesome time. It is a must do and a must see.
Posted By: norco
- Sun Oct 06 17:40:34 EDT 2002
UpsideAwesome scenery, good trail.
DownsideTrail is crowded during August, not very interesting scenery (mostly forest) until Upper Lake.
CommentThe campground is a perfect spot for an overnight trip. For sure bring a camera. The hike is also good for a day trip (2 h 30 mins there; 1 h 30 mins back).
Posted By: Kodiak
- Tue Jul 09 10:27:27 EDT 2002
UpsideA must hike, with three beautiful lake one after another.
DownsideCan be crowed during peak time.
CommentGrear camping spots at the top lake under the glacier.
Posted By: Urban trekker
- Sat May 25 20:21:59 EDT 2002
UpsideGreat mountain scenery, a good cardio workout, close up look at a glacier.
DownsideThe steepness between lower and middle lakes.
CommentBring a camera - lot's too take photos off - If short of time the ten minute walk into the lower lake is well worth it.