Just outside of Squamish and adjacent to Stawamus Chief Provincial Park is the beautiful Shannon Falls Provincial Park. Water originating from Mount Habrich and Mount Sky Pilot tumble over the edge of a 335-meter cliff and cascade over several rock faces before crashing to the ground, making Shannon fall the third largest waterfall in BC. Previously owned by Carling O'keefe Brewers, which used the area for it's glacier fresh water, the land was donated to the province in 1982 and the park was created.
The waterfall is mostly surrounded by lush old-growth rain forest, which makes it hard to get a good vantage point. The province has created a viewing platform at the bottom for tourists to see the torrent crashing to the ground. The park has two large grassy areas that are complete with picnic tables, an information center, restrooms, and a bus stop. The park also draws in rock climbers for its high quality crack climbs and multi-pitch routes.
From the picnic area there is a trail that leads to the top of Upper Shannon Falls, which cannot be seen from the ground. The trail rises 470 meters in 3.5 kilometers through tall old-growth forest and leads up to the top of the falls and out onto the stunning Howe Sound lookout. This trail has now become the first half of the Sea To Summit Trail that leads to the new Chalet at the top of the Sea to Sky gondola. The trail is steep in sections and flat in others. The 3.5-kilometer route back is the same as the way up, but it offers a different perspective and can be tricky coming down. Permanent ropes and chains are put in place for assistance in tougher areas. Depending on the season, you can find a few swimming or dunking pools along the falls route to cool down in. The trail there and back takes about four hours with picture taking and snack breaks, and it makes for a great outing.