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GOLDSTREAM PROVINCIAL PARK

Goldstream

Massive trees, majestic waterfalls, a meandering river that meets the sea, flowers, birds and fascinating fish are but a few of the attractions that draw people to Goldstream Provincial Park, a mere 16 km from downtown Victoria on southern Vancouver Island.

Goldstream’s numerous trails criss-cross through the dramatically different terrain of two distinct vegetation zones. The park is home to 600-year-old Douglas fir trees and western red cedar, mixed with western yew and hemlock, red alder, big leaf maple and black cottonwood. On the drier ridges visitors can find flowering dogwood, lodgepole pine and arbutus. The arbutus, with its thick leathery evergreen leaves, red-dish trunk and peeling bark, is Canada’s only broad-leafed evergreen and is found exclusively on Vancouver Island and on the southwest coast of British Columbia. In the spring and early summer, Goldstream overflows with colourful wildflowers, including the shade-loving western trillium and the calypso, a delicate orchid of the mossy forest glades.

Trails range from easy, wheelchair accessible walks to strenuous hikes and track along creeks, through forested uplands and past abandoned gold diggings from the days of the Gold Rush. More adventurous hikers can climb to the top of one of the highest points in Greater Victoria – Mt Finlayson, a recent addition to the park in 1994. Another trail leads you to stunning Niagara Falls, which cascades 47.5 metres down a rock cliff into a crystal clear canyon pool below.

Mt. Finlayson

Mt. Finlayson

Mt. Finlayson Trail Caution: This trail is steep and rugged; dress for the terrain and weather; stay on the marked trail; allow adequate time for return in daylight. The summit can be accessed from Finlayson Arm Road or the day-use area. Use caution when walking on Finlayson Arm Road.

Cycling

Bicycles are allowed on roadways and the paved trail from the day-use area to the Freeman King Visitor Centre. Bicycles are not permitted on park trails. Bicycle helmets are mandatory in British Columbia

Hiking

An extensive network of trails winds through Goldstream Provincial Park, totaling a distance of approximately 16 km. Trails start from both the day-use area and campground and range from easy walks, including short 5-15 minute walks along the river bank and through tall timber, to harder hikes. Some of the longer trails may take several hours to hike. For your own safety and preservation of the park, hike only on marked trails and obey posted signs. The ecosystems of this park are rare and fragile. Shortcutting trails destroys plant life and soil structure.

Click HERE for a map of the park and it’s trails.

 

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About the Author:

I've lived in Victoria over 30 years. I've travelled the world but I still believe that no other city beats Victoria for it's sheer beauty and variety of activities available year round. I sincerely want to help others explore and enjoy this great city - and hopefully make you want to come back again and again!

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