• LOCATION 18 | Cycling the Stanley Park Seawall

    Third Beach and Hollow Tree

    You are now cycling past Third Beach.

    It's a naturally sandy beach and is a favourite for bathing and watching the sunset because the trees around the beach create a damper from the city noises.
    My mom tells me, the teenage boys in her high school would invite the girls out to third beach to watch "the submarine races". I'm unclear as to whether or not this trick worked.
    If you are here on a “sunny Tuesday” between March and September, you'll find it will be anything but quiet. The beach plays host to an informal drum circle which attracts musicians of all levels and ages and crowds of listeners and dancers. The event is free and is a particularly special way celebrating the sunset.

    Across the bay you can see Point Grey, and the University of British Columbia campus.

    Let’s take a moment to acknowledge this unique rainforest in downtown Vancouver.

    There are about half a million trees in the park. Most are long lived coniferous tree species.
    The trees remain virtually undisturbed and able to grow to great heights, due to the rarity of forest fires.
    You may notice trees that are still standing but the wind has broken in half. The tree dies and decays but becomes a habitat for woodpeckers and other creatures.
    Wind has had a major influence on the forest development in Stanley Park, but in 2006 the most severe windstorm in the park's history hit the forest with winds up to 115 kph.
    The storm caused the demise of over 10,000 trees.

    One of the trees affected was the dead but very famous Hollow Tree.
    The Hollow Tree is a 1000 year old Western Red Cedar. It is a huge hollow stump. The stump has a circumference of about 18m with a hollow center. It was once the most famous tourist attraction in Vancouver.
    Photos have been taken of cars, horse drawn carriages and even elephants inside the stump.
    When the last windstorm hit, the Hollow tree was left leaning at a dangerous angle. After a lot of public debate, the stump was stabilized with a metal frame. Its circumference has shrunk significantly but the Hollow Tree has been preserved and is a favorite photo spot of many park visitors. It is not on the Seawall but is accessible via Stanley park Drive.

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Cycling the Stanley Park Seawall