Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail

Vispine logo

The Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail, which opened in June of 2017, completed trail across what had been called the ‘Malahat Gap’ in the Trans Canada Trail and the Vancouver Island Trail.

The Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail lies within Capital Regional District (https://www.crd.bc.ca/parks-recreation-culture/parks-trails/find-park-trail/sookehills-wilderness).  As it enters the Cowichan Valley Regional District, it officially becomes the Cowichan Valley Trail.  For practical purposes, VITA divides the Vancouver Island Trail into sections at the Sooke Lake Road trailhead near the south end of Shawnigan Lake.

It is a high standard trail with a 3-5 m wide graveled surface throughout its length.  It passes through the at times steep terrain of the Sooke Hills, mostly through managed forest lands with a wide range of forest ages – including young plantations, immature and maturing second-growth forests and even some old-growth forest.  At its higher elevations, it provides expansive views across Georgia Straight to the B.C. Mainland and southwards to Mt. Baker in Washington State.

Although suited to hiking, biking and equestrian use throughout its length, horses are not allowed within the Capital Regional District on lands in proximity to the Victoria Watershed (former Victoria Water Board lands).

Here is a GPS file in gpx format:    Download