Guided hikes on Vancouver Island
December 2, 2019 9:03 AM   Subscribe

The wife and I would like to spend some time on Vancouver Island come summertime. We're experienced day-hikers and have done our share of camping-lite in Ontario (i.e. cabins/yurts with a grill and composting toilets) but would also like to get a little more experience with seeing more remote areas.

We don't really want to take the plunge in terms of buying equipment and learning how to properly camp without actually trying it first to see if it's really something we'd enjoy doing (or if we'd just moan about lack of creature comforts the whole time). Any suggestions for guides or tour companies that can provide guided hikes (e.g. 3-4d) on the island?

Suggestions for places to visit also welcome!
posted by greatgefilte to Travel & Transportation around British Columbia (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Juan de Fuca trail is typically done in 3-4 days — it’s not super long but there is a lot of vertical change and the trail can be challenging in spots. Lots of great camping spots right along the beach.

Summer hikes are often at the mercy of mosquitos so keep that in mind when you plan! Bug spray helps but 3-4 days of those can really kill your enthusiasm.
posted by curious nu at 9:17 AM on December 2, 2019 [1 favorite]

Juan de Fuca trail is typically done in 3-4 days
That depends on the individual. I've done it. It took five days. Four days would have been pushing it. I'm a fit middle-aged woman hiking with another fit middle-aged woman and a bit more experienced than OP. I think less than five days for someone's first backpacking trip is optimistic.

Having said that, doing part of the Juan de Fuca trail, either as an out and back or heading in at Sombrio would be nice.

In terms of guided trips, I've signed up for a summer trip with MB Guiding for a trip to Nootka this summer. We decided on a guide because it's a bit more remote than what my friend and I are used to doing.
posted by TORunner at 9:36 AM on December 2, 2019

My partner and I live in Victoria and we hike a little, and I've never personally done an overnight trip or a guided one. That said, Sooke and upwards to Port Renfrew (and beyond up the Juan de Fuca trail) is certainly where I'd recommend you go, we do enjoy the China Beach to Mystic Beach hike, across the suspension bridge. It was breathtakingly impressive, and not hard or very long.

If you're at JDF, try to catch some of the tide pools at Botannical Beach, they're legendary.

I wish I could recommend a tour guide, but if I did want to find a good one in Victoria I'd call these guys and ask them. They're a local institution and we get all our outdoor gear from them.
posted by ipsative at 10:43 AM on December 2, 2019

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