Hike to San Josef Bay

Rate this Adventure Canada San Josef Bay Trailhead

Added by Carrie Cole

This is an amazing all day adventure from Port Hardy to a vast vacant 2 kilometre beach complete with caves, tidal pools and sea stacks to explore!

San Josef Bay in Cape Scott Provincial Park is a hike-in park at the northwestern tip of Vancouver Island. The trailhead for San Josef Bay and Cape Scott is located 64 kilometres west of Port Hardy and can be reached by active logging Roads.

Once you reach the parking lot, the trail to San Josef Bay is a family friendly 2.5 kilometres from the trailhead, taking about 45 minutes one way. The trail can accommodate a jogging stroller for those hiking with small children. In fact, we shared the trail that day with a couple families who came equipped to stay for a few nights with their children. Much of their camping equipment was hauled into camp using kids wagons!

As we arrived at San Josef Bay, we were taken with the sheer vastness of the vacant beach. Awesome sea stacks which are accessible at low tide and are located between first and second beach. After waiting and planning the trip for many months I was filled with awe and emotion at first glimpse of the sea stacks. The wild trees growing atop them left me wondering how they can grow despite little soil, and the wild west coast storms! Sea caves accessible during low tide provide an opportunity for exploration.

Our day at San Josef Bay went by far too quickly. We often talk of our adventure there hoping to return. We had the beach to ourselves for a great portion of the day which is almost unheard of. It is peaceful, awe-inspiring and a place easily enjoyed as a family!

Pack List

  • Vehicle suitable for logging roads
  • Day hikers
  • Food for one day
  • Water for one day
  • Rain gear
  • Toilet paper
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Year Round

Trail Type:



1.6 Miles


Easy Parking
Family Friendly

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Added by Carrie Cole

Carrie lives in Victoria, Canada and loves adventures with her husband and two awesome kids! She is a professional landscape and travel photographer.

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