Walk around Everett Crowley Park
Everett Crowley Park is home to an intricate network of trails, winding
through a transitional forest and urban wilderness. As soon as you enter the
park along the "Snake" trail, the noise of the traffic dissipates and is
replaced with a chorus of bird calls.
Everett Crowley Park is a green sanctuary, offering a lush woodland feel. It is
located in the neighbourhood of Killarney between South East Marine Drive and
63rd Avenue on Kerr Street. The 38.03 hectare park can be accessed by a parking
lot on the East side of Kerr Street. There are several trails which vary in
surface quality from narrow bark mulch paths, to wider compacted gravel
walkways. The circular route outlined above is 2.02 km, 1.26 miles or
approximately 4,000 steps, and will take about 35 minutes to walk.
Upon reaching the junction, turn right to follow "Vista Way" down a short hill.
You will pass Mt. Everett and come to a blackberry bush covered escarpment.
Perched above the North Arm of the Fraser River, you will discover a delightful
view of the patterned Richmond farmlands. On a clear day, visibility will extend
to the Gulf Islands and Mt. Baker.
Continuing along "Vista Way" and you will encounter several other pocket
viewpoints before taking your third left and ascending a small hill on the
"Creek Side" trail. This trail follows Kincross Creek to a bridge at Avalon
Turn left to follow the brief incline to Manfred's Meadow. Here you will find a
beautiful flower box, and a bee condo. This structure has been installed by the
Environmental Youth Alliance to assist the Blue Orchard Mason Bee; a native
species that has a vital roll in keeping plant communities diverse and
productive. This mason bee home is one of 150 established in Vancouver through
the volunteer run project. Manfred's Meadow is a great place for a picnic, or to
rest on the wooden bench before completing the loop.
Continue right to rejoin the "Snake" trail, and you will return to the parking
Originally a coniferous forest of cedar and hemlock trees, this area was defined
by its natural ravine, salmon-bearing creek and waterfall. As recently as 1850
it was undisturbed forest, but has since gone through multiple phases of use
including hunting, logging, and orchard land. In 1944, the area became the Kerr
Road Dump, and functioned as a landfill until 1967. Twenty years later it was
officially opened as a park, and named after Everett Crowley, a Park Board
Commissioner serving from 1962-1964. Crowley was a long time resident of the
area, and owner of Vancouver's last working dairy called "Avalon".
The Park, Vancouver's fifth largest, has an array of unique features providing
evidence of its previous usage. So much waste had been deposited that when the
dump finally closed, the fill was up to 49 metres deep in places. The old dump
boundaries are now wooded pathways, and steam vents show that the garbage buried
beneath the surface is still decomposing.
Everett Crowley Park is in transition. Since the early 1970's, native and
invasive plants and animals have been slowly recolonizing the park, transforming
it into a young forest of hardy deciduous trees, wildflowers, and opportunistic
blackberry. The area is recovering and the result is a botanically diverse
landscape frequented by birds and other wildlife, who find refuge in this urban
wilderness and aid in the making of a fantastic walking area.