Hiking through the Avatar Grove

Rate this Adventure Canada Avatar Grove

Added by Becky Simrose

Lush old-growth rainforestGiant Red Cedars and Douglas Fir trees with contorted burls"Canada's Gnarliest Tree"

To get to the Avatar Grove, drive to Port Renfrew along West Coast highway 14. Turn right onto Deering Rd and cross the long bridge over the San Juan River. Stay right at the next Y intersection, and then left at the T intersection. At the next Y keep left and cross a tall bridge over the crystal clear Gordon River . Stay right at next Y, and then cross a small bridge at Baird creek. Park on the right shoulder immediately after the bridge and look for the Avatar Grove trailhead signs.

When you step into this forest grove just a fifteen minute drive from Port Renfrew it feels like you are in another world. Massive trees are covered in moss, ferns crowd the ground, and little creeks meander through mossy rocks.

The grove is divided into upper and lower grove, separated by the Gordon River Main logging road. The lower grove slopes down from the road to the Gordon River. The upper grove extends uphill from the road. "Canada’s Gnarliest Tree", a huge Red Cedar with a massive burl 12 feet in diameter, is in the Upper Avatar Grove. The trail is still under construction in areas, a vital project by the Ancient Forest Alliance to protect tree roots and improve safety and access for visitors.

Look out for carvings of owls and faces peering down from various trees. We counted six, but there are likely more. This is not a long hike, but among the ancient massive firs and cedars, huge fallen nurse logs and lush undergrowth you will feel like lingering, and you will feel very small and so very recent.

The Costal Kitchen Cafe in Port Renfrew is a great place for lunch or drinks after the hike. If you are driving back to Victoria stop at Shirley Delicious in Shirley for the best cappuccinos and baked treats.

Pack List

  • Hiking boots
  • Rain coat
  • Warm clothes
  • Camera
  • Snacks
  • Water
Read More

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

Share

Activities:

Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:

Intermediate

Season:

Year Round

Features:

Forest
River
Scenic
Wildlife

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

Have you done this adventure? Have something to add? You could be the first to leave a review!

Added by Becky Simrose

Seriously in love with the mountains and ocean... and travel. I live in Calgary, just a short drive from Banff and so spend a lot of time in the mountains. When I'm not working I'm often on Vancouver Island...my other home and my ocean fix!

More Adventures Nearby

Photograph Sunrise at Pinnacles Provincial Park

Canada / Pinnacles Provincial Park

Located just west of Quesnel, Pinnacles Provincial Park is a great place to go for a short walk to a beautiful viewpoint. Park at the entrance of the park and follow the path towards the view points.

Kaila Walton
3 Saves

Hike Fang Mountain

Canada / Fang Mountain Trailhead

The trailhead to Fang Mountain is just after the 41km mark on Pass Lake Road off on an old logging road to the south (Note: There is no sign for the trailhead).

Jordon Conway
5 Saves

Paddle the Bowron Lake Circuit

Canada / Bowron Lakes Provincial Park

The world renowned Bowron Lake Provincial Park forms a natural 116km circuit in the heart of British Columbia’s interior Cariboo Mountain Range.

Jordon Conway
6 Saves