June 21 & July 19 - Deer Lake Park - Burnaby. This is another one of the paddle selections from "The Vancouver Paddler" book that I reviewed this May 2004.
Who would think that in the middle of Burnaby you have a mini paddle getaway. Often we tend to forget that Vancouver has so much to offer. Deer Lake Park has tons of boardwalk and trails but it also has a pretty and pleasant lake to paddle. You can rent canoes or kayaks at the lake - the east end has a pavillion and the rental location & dock. I was doing a demo June 21st with Seaward Kayak's Quest X3 and in July it was my own canoe. Both outings were over my lunch hour. The lake is only a few minutes from Metrotown where I work and both sessions were great stress relievers taken on gorgeous sunny days!
There is plenty of wildlife to watch; herons, geese, ducks, fish, turtles, various other birds. The scenery is quite stunning too - views off towards Metrotown and up the hill to the south over large meadows; Weeping willows overhanging the lake and trails; beautiful white lilies fringing the shores... Deer Lake is only a few minutes from Burnaby Lake to the north across the No. 1 Hwy and both lakes share similar wildlife characteristics and are easily accessible for short trips.
Since it is a small lake wind and waves are not a problem. This is an easy paddle and suitable for "relaxation" and novices. It only takes a half hour to paddle around the whole lake at a pretty relaxed pace. If it's sunny, hiding out under the trees that overhang the banks in places is fun or there are a few sandy & grassy spots you can pull out at to have a picnic!
The following link will give you a map of the park, including lake:
- and there is lots more info on the net including fishing data.
Directions: Head East (or from the Valley head West) along No. 1 Hwy to Kensington exit. Go east on Canada Way til you get to Sperling Ave (a "no Exit" road here) & turn south. This will take you to the beach and pavillion/rental parking lot area.
To get to the beach from Metrotown head North on Royal Oak and then turn east on Deer Lake Parkway. You can follow the signs to the West entrance but then you have to wind your way over to the east side where the beach is - way quicker to do this from Canada Way.
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