Current Status of the Vancouver Island Trail

About 90% of the Trail has been located and is defined on the ground well enough to be followed/hiked.  However, much of the route north of Port Alberni is not officially open since a number of administrative arrangements (land use agreements, Section 57 approvals etc.) have not yet been completed.  Gaining the permission and support of several Indigenous Communities is also on-going.  Where the Trail is located across private forest lands, detailed planning and location of the trail has been progressing following completion of a Memorandum of Understanding that reflects the co-operative working relationship between VITA and Mosaic Forest Management, the timberland manager for both TimberWest and Island Timberlands.   

A VITA volunteer – Alan Philip of Duncan – has compiled a series of 7 topographic maps that cover the entire Trail from Victoria to Cape Scott.  These are all up-dated as of July, 2020. As you will see in the map legends, the maps indicate completed trail sections in green, sections of the route using roads in yellow, proposed/projected sections of trail in olive green, and sections over water in blue.  The maps also show roads that access the Trail (including gated roads) and campsites. Zoom in and out as you wish – there is lots of detail on these high resolution images.

The 7 mapsheets can be downloaded as pdf’s, as follows:

Victoria to Lake Cowichan – updated April 2021

Download Map 1

Lake Cowichan to Port Alberni – updated May 2021

Download Map 2

Port Alberni to Cumberland – updated April 2021

Download Map 3

Cumberland to Strathcona Dam – updated June 2021

Download Map 4

Strathcona Dam to Woss

Download Map 5

Woss to Port McNeill – updated April 2021

Download Map 6

Port McNeill to Cape Scott (temporarily taken down during the pandemic, as requested by the Kwakiutl First Nation)

Sections of the Vancouver Island Trail

Click the links below for section descriptions and current status of various sections of the Trail, to download GPS tracks, and to view the GPS tracks.  Of the available map options, the OCM-Landscape map is probably the most useful (it includes contours – quite detailed if you zoom in). For more detail, take a look at the Guidebook and check out the Blog for recent updates.

Galloping Goose Trail

Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail

Cowichan Trail

Lake Cowichan Section

Tuck Lake Trail

Runners Trail

Alberni Inlet Trail

Log Train Trail

Beaufort Crest Route (incomplete)

Cumberland to Strathcona Park

Strathcona Park Trails

Strathcona Gap (incomplete)

Salmon/White River Section

Schoen Section

Englewood Rail Trail

Bonanza Gap (incomplete)

Hankin Ridge & Tsulton River Section

‘Namgis TrailSuquash Section

Port Hardy to Shushartie Water route

Georgie Lake Gap (incomplete)

North Coast Trail

To view the Trail on a satellite image:

Left click on Story Map Format  – (or right click & select “Open link in a new tab”)

The satellite imagery is high resolution.  You can pan around the image and zoom in and out (use +/- buttons or a scroll wheel) as desired. The trail sections (various colors) correspond to the 7 sections available as downloadable topographic maps earlier on this page (the red download buttons).