Falkor's Walks with Friends is written by Laara B. In this series we visit dog friendly parks and trails to bring our recommendations to you! Come along with us to discover new places for you and your pup!
It's February 1st, and we've been lured outside by the promise of sunshine. We humans have made our way with Falkor and Prince to Surrey Bend Regional Park. The park's slogan is "Big, Beautiful, and Watery". This is true, we've been here five minutes and Falkor has already managed to walk through a marsh. He is supremely pleased with himself for doing so (granted, for an on-leash park, this is pretty impressive).
I will say this; your dog will manage to get wet. Heck, you will probably get wet. This whole area is technically flood plain, so there is a chance the paths will be pretty darn wet. I highly recommend wearing hiking boots or rain boots unless you feel like playing wet shoe roulette. Bring a towel for your dog's feet. If you have a dog who constantly lunges towards any and all bodies of water this is probably not the park for you. The marshes are delicate ecological areas and your dog should not be going in them (I'm looking at you, Falkor!)
If you can accept your inevitable dampness, I highly recommend giving this park a visit. It embraces being "big, beautiful, and watery", and lives up to that promise. It challenges the way you view it with wonderful interpretive exhibits. My favorite is a view of the Parson's Channel that makes you wind around (or walk over) logs to get to it, as if you were traversing a log boom.
You can hike the winding Spirea Trail, which is surrounded by fields of the titular flowers (in bloom in spring and fall), and past marshes and waterways. If you pay attention, you are treated to all sorts of wildlife. We saw several water fowl and a woodpecker. There are over six kilometers of trails here to keep your dog interested. The whole park is fairly flat which is helpful for dogs or people with mobility issues.
The park has a large undercover picnic area which will be lovely in the warmer months. There are several washrooms (outhouses). Despite my aversion to outhouses, they are kept very clean. My partner described them as 'summer camp washrooms'. There is also a water fountain here for humans and dogs, but it doesn't run this time of year.
Overall, we all enjoyed our visit, and are already planning a return trip in the spring to see the Spirea in bloom. Who’s up for a picnic? (puppy treats included, of course!)
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