One of Squamish’s most popular features is its location on the tip of beautiful Howe Sound. August Jack Motor Inn is flanked on three sides by municipal parks, and it is also just a few hundred metres from the trailhead of the Waterfront Loop Trail, a multi-terrain trail that leads to Newport Beach. The loop trail is an enjoyable and scenic walk every season of the year.
August Jack is located on Cleveland Avenue, the main street that runs through the heart of Squamish, and it’s only a 5-minute walk to the end of Cleveland Ave. and the sign marking the trailhead. Most of the trail is gravel, so mud is rarely a problem even when it’s raining. The trail is dog-friendly, and the beach is generally considered off-leash by local residents.
There is some construction going on in the centre of the loop, so the best scenery can be viewed on the outer perimeter.
It’s common to see grey heron, the occasional owl, other birds and squirrels along the trail. Orcas, seals and dolphins have even been spotted in the sound. Howe Sound is known for its emerald water, particularly during the coccolithophorids bloom during the summer.
A blaze of fireweed, and flat meadows dotted with daisies and other wildflowers are a seasonal treat. While other parts of the trail pass through a canopy of deciduous trees.
The flat sandy beaches are a popular area for dogs to run and romp off-leash. And beachcombers love picking over the driftwood that’s washed up on the shore.
Sailboats can often be seen heading out into the sound, or returning back to the yacht club mooring. The Inukshuk is a popular photo spot, located near the play and ‘picnic’ area. There are no picnic tables, but people often sit on the logs and eat lunch, as they watch their kids or dogs play. During the summer months, there are usually slacklines up.
While there’s a designated area on The Spit for kiteboarding and windsurfing, kiteboarders often use Newport Beach as well. Before you leave the beach to walk back to town, there’s a great vantage point for viewing Shannon Falls. The 335-metre waterfall is the third highest in the province.
As you near the motel coming back, the Squamish Yacht Club offers a fabulous view of the Stawamus Chief and sailboats. The three peaks of the granitic dome tower 700 metres above the water.