Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
799.00 m (2,621.39 ft)
Trail type
13.10 km (8.14 mi)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Hollyburn + Strachan loop is a medium-length hike or run. The ground is a mix of solid trail and poorly maintained steep trails that requires a bit of scrambling. The Christmas Tree Gulley is not exposed, but has some tricky talus and scree that will be made more difficult with improper footwear. The route to the summit of Strachan is not always obvious.

The route can be done in either direction:
Counter clockwise means you go up the Christmas Gully, which is a scrambly gulley with lot's of loose stones. You gain elevation quickly, and descend by hiking up the Strachan Face.
Clockwise is a slower build, but involves a rapid descent down the Christmas gully which avoids the ups and downs that's required when returning along the trail from Hollyburn.

The descent from Hollyburn is quite steep, with poorly maintained trail. If you're coming from Strachan, this will be a steep climb. Expect to use your hands. The trail to Strachan is fairly mellow in comparison. You pass by the remains of a plane crash along the way. Towards the top you pass the chairlift, and subsummit. It's a steep descent here, sometimes over section of rock gets to the col. To the north is the true summit and a quick scramble. Splashes of orange paint are sometime visible to mark the trail, but they are not obvious. Keep a close eye out, and make route decision conservatively.

In the middle of a saddle is a slight trail/stream. This is the "trail" that heads down the Christmas gulley. It is fairly straightforward except for one awkward section towards the bottom where you need to go looker's right and take a trail through the bushes to bypass a steep rock section in the creek. From here it is a moderate descent down to the main trail on Saint Marks. This section is well marked, and quite wide. The trail follows the flank back to the Cypress parking lot. 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Vehicle Parking

Open Year-round


Open from

May 13 to November 21


Great views. Low exposure scrambling. Close to town.


Rough ground. Tricky route finding.

Trailhead Elevation

3,120.08 ft (951.00 m)

Highest point

4,717.85 ft (1,438.00 m)


Historically significant
Big vistas
Bird watching

Typically multi-day


Permit required




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