7 Hidden Hikes on Vancouver Island with @tomparkr

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Discover BC through the eyes of its locals! Each week we #exploreBC through a different Instagrammer who shares their favourite local spots and experiences.

This week, we’re featuring @tomparkr who shares some of his favourite hidden hikes on Vancouver Island.

A man stops to snap a photo on a wooden trail through a dense forest.

Carmanah Walbran Provincial Park. Carmanah is one of the most beautiful parks I’ve seen on Vancouver Island. From giant spruce trees to the endless flora and fauna, it is easy to see why a section of the park is referred to as “Heavens Grove”. With some of the largest spruce trees on earth and low lying clouds, it appears as if the trees are connecting heaven and earth.”

A man hikes past a rocky mountain as waterfalls cascade over the sides.

Della Falls. To make it to the falls requires a bit of hard work, but it is well worth the pay off. To get to the trail head, you must make it down Great Central Lake (45 km/28 mi) either by power boat or canoe/kayak. Once at the other end, their is a dock and boat racks for your equipment, then you must start the 15 km (9 mi) hike in. We did this trip over three days providing a day to hike up the Love Lake – Mount Septimus Trail that provides great views of the falls from across the valley.”

A man walks through a rugged landscape in a dense forest.

East Sooke Park. This is a nice short hike located near Victoria that takes you out to the coast. Try and time your hike so that you reach the water just before sunset for the best light.”

A hiker pauses to take in the glassy waters of Arnica Lake.

“Golden Hinde. Arnica Lake is located on the trail to the Golden Hinde, the tallest mountain on Vancouver Island. The hike to the Hinde provides breathtaking views of endless mountain ranges and great wilderness once lower on the mountain.”

A small trail winds through a dense forest.

North Coast/Cape Scott Trail. Located at the northern tip of Vancouver Island, Cape Scott is home to some of the most beautiful and rugged landscapes on the island. With the weather changing every 5 minutes, it is important to be well prepared while hiking in this amazing place.”

A man walks along a small trail that winds through a dense forest.

Port Alberni. Just across the highway from the candy shop in Port Alberni is one of the town’s best hikes. After crossing the highway, follow the trails down to a river and some beautiful waterfalls. Also don’t forget to grab a treat from the candy shop!”

A man stands in the middle of a road as the rain is caught by rays of sunlight.

“Rays of Rain. While heading out to a hike in Qualicum, we came across some of the most incredible weather we had ever seen. It went from a sunny summer day to a rainstorm in a matter of seconds and the strange thing was that it was only raining above us. It was like being in a cartoon but with better lighting.”

About @tomparkr:

Tom is a photographer born and raised on Vancouver Island, and spends his time hiking & discovering new spots to explore.

Looking for more BC experiences and destinations? Follow us on Instagram at@hellobc.

Know Before You Go

No matter what outdoor activity you are planning, you must be prepared. Remember to follow the three Ts—trip planning, training, and taking the essentials. AdventureSmart is a great resource to get informed before heading outdoors.

Road work and wildfires can affect travel plans during the summer. Check DriveBC and BC Wildfire Service before you go to plan your journey.