Rice Lake Hike

Quick Facts:

  • AllTrails link: Rice Lake via Rice Creek Loop Trail, 3.1km with 26m elevation gain
  • Difficulty: very easy, stroller friendly
  • Traffic: heavy
  • Facilities: flush toilet at parking lot, picnic tables, pit toilet at Rice Lake
  • View: beautiful lake surrounded by lush forest
  • Overall score: 8/10

This is a great little 3.1 km stroller friendly “hike” sandwiched between Lynn Canyon Park and Lynn Headwaters Regional Park, popular for trout fishing and hiking.

Report: March 2021

When the forecast called for rain today, we decided to pay a visit here since it’s so short and well-covered. We have been here a few times, usually hiking up from Lynn Canyon. Today, we drove up Lillooet Road instead because we wanted to keep the hike short enough for Junior to enjoy.

We were spooked by the amount of traffic on our drive up, so when we saw some open spots in a small parking lot about 300m out, we took it. Turned out the main parking lot at Rice Lake was huge! I estimated at least 50 if not 100 parking spots here. So even though it was busy, there were plenty free spots on this March Saturday.

Comparatively, the washrooms were quite small. Only 3 gender neutral stalls here.

The whole trail was well maintained and surfaced with firm gravel, very easy for a stroller. Rice Lake is part of the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve, so only the outside trails (eg. Lynn Headwaters Connector) allow dogs on-leash. Dogs are not permitted on the Seymour Valley Trailway, the Fisherman’s Trail (north of the Homestead Trail junction) and the Rice Lake Loop Trail.

It was quite busy on the way to the Rice Lake Loop on Lynn Headwaters Connector, but as soon as we crossed the no-dogs barrier, the traffic calmed down noticeably.

We walked the loop counter clockwise, with a stop at the obligatory selfie station.

After another few minutes, we arrived at the fishing pier. It was somewhat busy but people generally kept their social distance. A sign read that the daily quota for Rice Lake Rainbow Trout is two fish per day. A freshwater fishing license is required.

Then it’s an easy stroll with minimal up and downs through the typical lush North Shore forest with great views of the calm lake. At 500m across, Rice Lake is much smaller smaller than even Sasamat Lake, Alice Lake, and Rolley Lake. Unlike the fore-mentioned lakes, there is no swimming, no paddling, and no beach front here, so it’s very quiet and undisturbed.

This was such an easy stroll that I hesitated to categorize it as a “hike”, but it surely isn’t an urban park. Even though it’s shorter and easier to finish this than some urban parks we’ve visited, it’s entirely surrounded by nature.

The quality of this trail is on par with some of the best parks in the region, so it’s definitely a great destination if you have a budding nature enthusiast who is just building up his hiking endurance. You don’t even need to carry a backpack carrier as a back-up option in case of toddler fatigue. Bring a sturdy, full sized stroller and you will be all set!

Report: April 2022

We came to hike around Rice Lake several more times since our last update. In April 2022, Big Bro achieved a new milestone: he hiked the entire loop with no whining! Not only that, he added some challenges and explored the side trails and climbed some rocks just for fun. This is the documented personal best for our energetic 4.5 year old.

Exploring some side trails with Grandma

Grandpa also unlocked a new experience: fly-fishing at this lake. The small lake was stocked with 4,000 rainbow trout in March, so Grandpa was eager to try his luck. Unfortunately, he has yet to find his first catch.

Grandpa fishing

We also saw a lot of fully decked-out cyclists getting ready. I looked into it a little bit, and found out that they were likely preparing to tackle the 9.8km, 150m climb, Seymour Valley Trailway. I thought about how much Big Bro and Little Bro love biking. At some point we would need to add a new Category to our blog for biking.

Cyclists at Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve

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