Hiking the West Coast of Vancouver Island
Contains Photos, Maps, Bibliography, Index
Ann Turner is the financial and budget manager of the University of
British Columbia Library.
The wilderness trails on the rugged west coast of Vancouver Island offer
hikers spectacular beach and ocean views, awe-inspiring rainforests, and
challenging climbs along rocky cliffs. This guide covers six areas,
moving from south to north up the coast: the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail;
the West Coast Trail; Carmanah Walbran Provincial Park; trails in the
Long Beach, Tofino and Ucluelet areas; the Nootka Trail; and Cape Scott
The trails range from easy day hikes for novices to multi-day hikes
over difficult terrain. A standard grading system is used to rate the
difficulty of each one, based on such factors as incline and the forest
and beach terrain that will be encountered. Instructions are given for
using tide tables, which are needed for most of the trails as incoming
tides can trap hikers or make portions of a shoreline trail impassable.
There is also helpful advice about what to take, what to wear, and how
to protect both yourself and the environment.
The detailed guide to each trail is introduced by a summary table
giving the total distance in miles and kilometres; the approximate
duration in hours or days; the standard difficulty ratings; access
routes to the trailhead; maps and tide tables needed; and any special
features to watch for. The route is then broken down into sections, with
similar table information for each section. Besides easy-to-follow
travel directions, the detail includes historical information and points
of interest. There are maps outlining each trail and numerous
black-and-white photographs of natural features and wildlife. The guide
concludes with some general chapters on the natural history, First
Nations, and conservation efforts in the area.