Hiking in East Sooke Park (Victoria, BC) – Coppermine Trail

East Sooke Park is a large nature reserve just outside of Victoria, BC. It’s located on the East Sooke Peninsula and surrounded on three sides by water. The western portion borders the Juan de Fuca Strait while the eastern portion skirts the Sooke Basin. A narrow channel near Wiffen Spit connects the two. This regional […]

Written By Clayton Kessler

On July 23, 2009
"

Read more

East Sooke Park is a large nature reserve just outside of Victoria, BC. It’s located on the East Sooke Peninsula and surrounded on three sides by water. The western portion borders the Juan de Fuca Strait while the eastern portion skirts the Sooke Basin. A narrow channel near Wiffen Spit connects the two.

This regional park is located only 40 minutes from downtown Victoria but feels like a world away. It’s a natural paradise with dense forests, undisturbed shorelines and is considered a hiker’s paradise. (The calm water of Sooke Basin is a kayaker’s paradise).

The Coppermine Trail takes about 2 hours to complete (round trip) but people tend to linger and enjoy the coastal views of the Olympic Mountains across the Strait.

Coppermine Trail, East Sooke Park

Coppermine Trail, East Sooke Park

The trail is wide and well-groomed as it follows an old mining road. As you start out, there is a slight elevation gain as it skirts around Mt. Maguire. Lantern plants fill the water-logged ditches to the side. Shortly after starting, the path hits an important junction. Excellent signs point you in the right direction.

  • To the left, a trail leads to Anderson Cove through a thick, second-growth forest.
  • To the right, a steep trail leads up Mt. Maguire for some nice coastal views from up top.
  • Straight ahead, is the continuation of the Coppermine Trail that leads to the shore.

Continuing straight ahead, the path flattens as your approach a marshy area that’s frequented by mule deer. A bit further ahead, the forest thickens and darkens as you approach the abandoned mine shafts that were once used for ore mining for over 100 years.

Lantern plants grow huge beside the pathway.

Lantern plants grow huge beside the pathway.

An abandoned mine shaft along Coppermine Trail, East Sooke Park, BC

A bit further along, the trail narrows to a typical hiking path as it travels through thick forests, open meadows and beside deep ravines. At one point, a fallen tree blocked the way. As the path continued westward, it drops in elevation eventually reaching sea level. Great coastal views can be enjoyed here and, at low tide, you can beachcomb along the shores of Vancouver Island.

Following the well-groomed path back, the steep incline makes for a very challenging return. This strenuous cardio workout is even more challenging since the thick forest prevents any ocean breezes from cooling hikers down. Bring plenty of water and start your return hike well in advance of the sunset.

Getting There: For driving directions, click here. Continue driving up Coppermine Road, along the bumpy dirt road and park at the top of the hill. The trailhead starts on the right-hand side – not the left-hand side on Gordon Road as I mistook.

For more coastal hiking around Victoria and Sooke, BC visit Comfort Cove Cottage. Plenty of romantic getaways are available at Heavenly Hideaways.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Made In Canada

TracksAndTrails.ca Fire Strikers and Fatwood tinder are Made In Canada

How To Light A Fire Without Matches

Step 1.

Fluff the fatwood by scraping the stick with the edge of your striker. If a hunting knife is available, use the BACK of the blade to fluff.

Step 2.

Practice getting a spark to land on the pile of fluffed fatwood by using your ferro rod and the edge of your striker.

Step 3.

Direct the sparks to the top of the pile of fluffed fatwood by using your QUICK-FIRE and the edge of the Striker. (Or use the back of a blade)