Renfrew-Collingwood Community News

News stories from the Renfrew-Collingwood community in East Vancouver

Skytrain Rambler: Stop at Sperling-Burnaby Lake to see baby ducks and geese

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More reasons to ♥ Skytrain

BY JULIE CHENG

Burnaby Lake Geese

A spring-time ride to the Sperling-Burnaby Lake Skytrain station takes you to the delightful baby geese that make their home at Burnaby Lake. Photos by Julie Cheng and Bryden Fergusson

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I love the Skytrain. With two lines (Expo and Millennium) running through it, Renfrew-Collingwood has more Skytrain stops than any other community. The Skytrain can take you downtown and on to the North Shore by Seabus, east to Burnaby or Surrey, and south to Richmond.

The Skytrain saved me years ago when I was feeling isolated at home and searching for places to go with my two preschool kids. I’d pack them in the stroller and take the Skytrain to the family drop-in at Collingwood Neighbourhood House, the storytimes at the Central Branch library and onto the Seabus for a walk along the North Vancouver seawall.

Today the Skytrain gives my teenage kids freedom to move around the Lower Mainland. Sadly for me but happily for them, Skytrain takes them to the shops and restaurants on Robson Street or at Metrotown.

April is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. Hop on and take a Skytrain ride to a lovely spot in Burnaby that is linked by nature to Renfrew-Collingwood. You’ll see baby ducks and geese and more!

Skytrain stop: Sperling-Burnaby Lake

Zone 2 on the Millenium Line; about 10 minutes from Renfrew or Rupert Station OR 30 minutes from Nanaimo, 29th Avenue or Collingwood-Joyce Station. The longer route takes you past the beautiful waterfront of Sapperton in New Westminster.

Sperling-Burnaby Lake Skytrain Station Stained glass

The beautiful light from the stained glass greet you in the Sperling-Burnaby Lake Skytrain Station.

From the Sperling-Burnaby Lake station, it’s an easy 10-minute walk to Burnaby Lake and its lovely calm waters that are fed by Still Creek. This is the same creek that flows through our neighbourhood’s Renfrew Ravine.

Before coming out of the station, enjoy the beautiful light coming from the station’s stained glass. Then head south (away from the mountains) and take the overpass, where you’ll be rewarded with a glimpse of Still Creek and other great views.

Overpass to Burnaby Lake

You get great views from the overpass.

Bridge View

Follow the Central Valley signs to Burnaby Lake. Pass by the target range for the Burnaby Archery Club and head to the back side of the Burnaby Lake Sports Complex (includes the Bill Copeland ice rink).

Central Valley signs to Burnaby Lake

Follow the Central Valley signs to Burnaby Lake.

You’ll soon find one of the entrances to Burnaby Lake. Ahead of you is a path leading across a bridge and to your right another path leads to a large open field where people can be found flying model airplanes whenever the geese are not around. It’s your choice which route you take. Either one will take you around the lake’s entire 11 kilometres of trail.

You can download a map of Burnaby Lake Regional Park to help you get around.

Boats at Burnaby Lake boat house

You’ll see colourful boats and a gorgeous view of Burnaby Lake from the boat house.

If you don’t have much time to walk around the whole lake, continue to the right past the large field. You will cross a parking lot and across the boat house. The boat house (actually called a rowing pavilion) and spectator stands were built for the rowing events during the 1973 Canada Summer Games. More recently rowers trained here for the 2012 Summer Olympics, and the last time I visited, there was a wedding in full swing in the beautiful boat house. From here people also launch their rowboats or kayaks.

Skytrain is a fast, efficient and environmentally friendly option for transportation. It saves you parking and gas, and best of all, lets you enjoy beautiful natural spaces like Burnaby Lake.

Bird boat house

In addition to baby ducks and geese, Burnaby Lake is a great place to spot blue herons, bald eagles, kingfishers and osprey.

Julie Cheng is the editor of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News. This story was first published in the April 2015 issue.

Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News

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