Friday, August 23, 2013

Virtual Tour of The Stawamus Chief

The Stawamus Chief, most commonly known simply as The Chief, is a massive granite monolith about an hour outside Vancouver and just south of Squamish. Towering over 700m above the Howe Sound, it is a very popular hiking destination in the summer months, offering unparalleled views over the surrounding area. It is also very popular with climbers worldwide, offering plenty of opportunities for all levels.

The Chief has three peaks, each of which is accessible by foot. Most people climb to the lowest, First, peak for the views. The 360 panoramic image below is taken from the Second peak, showing the view over Squamish and the Howe Sound. From here it is a short traverse past a dramatic chasm to the top of the Third Peak, 702m above sea level.

Panorama of The Stawamus Chief supplied by Panoramic Earth

A number of routes ascend The Chief, all starting from the same trailhead near the carpark and campsite. A part of the way the trail splits with one branch ascending a very steep gully to the Third Peak directly. The other continues up for some distance more before splitting again with separate trails leading to the First and Second Peaks.

All the trails are rugged and steep, but the views at the top are well worth the effort. Panoramic Earth now holds a number of virtual tour images taken on various parts of The Chief, providing the most comprehensive virtual tour available of the second largest granite monolith in the world.

New Panoramas on Panoramic Earth