Garibaldi Park Whistler A to ZCorrie Lake is the surreal looking lake that can be seen across the valley from Whistler Mountain.  While hiking the High Note trail along Whistler Mountain it slowly comes into view, seemingly hanging in the forest on an otherwise steep sided, broad mountain.  The broad mountain that Corrie Lake sits within is called Corrie Ridge, which extend from Corrie Peak to Gentian Ridge.  The ridge is named Corrie Ridge because Corrie Peak is the highest peak along the ridge.

Whistler & Garibaldi Hiking

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Corrie Lake, Corrie Peak, Corrie Ridge, Corrie Glacier and Corrie Creek all derive their name from the observation in 1916 by provincial botanist John Davidson who compared the lake to the corries of Lochnagar and Braeriach in the Cairngorms of Scotland.  Corries are glacier carved lakes usually found on the north facing slopes of mountains in the northern hemisphere.  Corries in the western world are more commonly called cirques, though corrie is generally used in the United Kingdom.  A corrie or cirque results from a north-facing glacier repeatedly gouging out a hollow where a lake forms. Every year as more rock is gouged out, the deeper, thicker and heavier the glacier gets and therefore the gouging force progressively increases.  Interestingly, this process tends to confine itself to a somewhat standard size.  Generally corries/cirques settle into a circumference of just under one kilometre.  The back wall of the corrie/cirque gets steeper due to freeze-thaw weathering and plucking and the base becomes deeper due to erosion.  The glacier is heavier as it moves downhill causing it to move in a circular motion known as rotational slip as it moves out of the hollow it created.  The lake produced by this geologic process is circular in shape.  Cirque is derived by the French from the Latin word for circus, which translates to English as circle.  Corrie Lake has a somewhat circular shape and Cirque Lake in Callaghan Valley has an even more symmetrical shape to it. 

Corrie Lake from Whistler Mountain

Corrie Lake in Garibaldi Park

Corrie Lake in Garibaldi Park

Corrie Lake in Garibaldi Park

High Note Trail on Whistler Mountain

Cirque Lake is a wild and beautiful lake that hides high above and beyond Callaghan Lake in Callaghan Lake Provincial Park.  What makes Cirque Lake special among the other sensationally beautiful lakes in the Whistler area is both its location and geologically formed shape.  It sits high above Callaghan Lake, which itself is a gorgeous, mountain lake.  The remoteness of Callaghan Lake is a bit of a mirage due to the fact that you can drive right to it!

Cirque Lake Hike in Whistler

Cirque Lake in the Callaghan Valley

Cirque Lake Map v7

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