Wilderness on the Doorstep: Vancouver's Mountain Playground
North Vancouver Museum and Archives, 2005
Vancouver's scenic backdrop of mountains is the British Columbia city's most prominent natural feature. The row of snow-capped peaks and their evergreen slopes and river valleys have attracted day-trippers, hikers, climbers, skiers and anglers since the late 19th century. The proximity of the wilderness on the North Shore of Burrard Inlet has always been highly valued by local residents and remains a big draw for visitors--an opportunity to explore the quiet, challenge and mystery of nature without having to travel far. The early development of hotels, tearooms and suspension bridges added interest for the general public. As the city grew during the 20th century, bridges, streetcars and roads, as well as amenities such as cabins, lodges and ski lifts, made it more convenient for adventurers to reach and enjoy their destinations. Given the ever-growing numbers of visitors, it is an ongoing balancing act to protect this wilderness while allowing people to experience its beauty.