Rumon Carter

almost 4 years ago

South Vancouver Island Biogeography at its Finest

For an easy day trip in the Victoria region, Jocelyn Hill is hard to beat. Once you're through the forest and onto the ridge, the views of Finlayson Arm on a clear day are incredible. The only reason I knock it down to a 4-star is due to the highly unaesthetic power line you have to cross under en route. To avoid this, do this hike from the other end, i.e. by parking at the access to Mt. Work / Mackenzie Bight off Ross-Durrance Road.

Rumon Carter

almost 4 years ago

An Island Gem in the Centre of a Crown of Jewels

Clearly, given our overlapping reports (https://www.theoutbound.com/canada/hiking/hiking-through-marble-meadows-to-the-wheaton-hut), I'm in complete agreement with Sarah that this trip is a must-do, regardless the additional effort required. When Jennie and I did it for the first time, in a July, we were gobsmacked the entire time by not only the landscape, but also the proliferation of wildflowers on display. Looking forward to returning and staging from the Wheaton Hut for a return to the Golden Hinde by a different route than my previous climb/run (https://www.theoutbound.com/canada/backpacking/summiting-the-golden-hinde).

A perfect introduction to the Island Alpine

Mt. Albert Edward is one of the most-visited mountains of the Vancouver Island Alps, and for good reason: Ease of vehicular access, one of the Island's most forgiving trails in terms of rate of ascent, varied terrain, a great primary camping location at Circlet Lake and - when the weather cooperates - panoramic views of the rest of Strathcona Park, the Strait of Georgia and Coast Mountains and, if you're lucky, the Pacific Ocean. A must-do for new adventurers and a great wilderness introduction for families. Later, when you have the legs and lungs for it, put this at the top of your list for a one-day trail running adventure.

This is such a great hike, for families, friends, and solo adventurers alike - the perfect way to sample coastal hiking, take in a stellar beach, and escape the city.

Hornby Island is a mecca of west coast mountain biking, one of the first established zones on Vancouver Island / the Gulf Islands, host for years of a (in)famous mountain bike festival, and still one of the must-go places for riders in the region and otherwise. Every time I visit I shake my head at how good it is - like an amusement park. And Hornby Island, generally, is such a unique, laid-back gem.

A stunning little spot deserving of a stop when you're traveling Highway 4. Haven't yet introduced it to the girls, Dan, so thank you for the reminder. (Growing up in Port Alberni, it was definitely part of the upbringing.) Unrelated, love your profile description - I get the sense we'd get along just fine with that combination of goals and values. Here's to meeting out on the trail one day.

Mount Cokely is certainly an under-recognized summit, sitting as it does in the figurative and literal shadow of its big brother, Mount Arrowsmith. But as Dan notes, it's more accessible as a four season adventure for the typical weekend adventurer than Arrowsmith - i.e. far easier to get up in the winter - so should definitely be given its due. The logging roads and ATV activity on the way up are unfortunate, but the alpine views at the top leave you forgetting about all that. And the forest access is stunning.