Gorgeous Waterfalls Worth Chasing in North/Central Vancouver Island
Nature lovers have long been drawn to the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. The allure of the rich, unique landscape offers a wealth of beauty where hikers, boaters, and bikers converge to discover the wonders that await.
A true Pacific Northwest adventure would not be worth bragging about without chasing the gorgeous waterfalls in North/Central Vancouver Island. Here are our top picks for fantastic falls
Only 10 minutes from Campbell River, Elk Falls is known for its thundering waterfall. This is one of the most popular provincial parks on Vancouver Island due to its forest trails, the nearby Quinsam salmon hatchery, and with the Campbell River (accessible from the Canyon View Trail) as the go-to spot to witness spawning salmon in the fall. Viewing of the Elk Falls Canyon is much better and more accessible now with the newly built Elk Falls Suspension Bridge. The bridge floats 60 metres above the waters of Campbell River Canyon and there are wheelchair accessible platforms built just up the banks to catch glimpse of the canyon. The Elk Falls Suspension Bridge is an excellent way to see the falls and get a birds-eye view of the canyon.
Give yourself some extra time so that you can check out Moose Falls and Deer Falls to check off a few more spots on your bucket list.
Strathcona Provincial Park
The majestic Strathcona Provincial Park on Vancouver Island is one of the go-to destinations for avid hikers, kayakers, and canoers. You have a good assortment of trails to choose from, so people of all activity or fitness levels can enjoy the beauty of the park. Here are some of the must-see spots.
This perfect little hike is just 800 metres and 20 minutes, and it’s accessed from the Buttle Lake/Westmin Mines Road. It’s a loop trail through lush, old growth forest with some very uncommon sights, including a wide variety of saprophytes, such as Candystick, Indian Pipe, and Pine Drops. Of course, your reward is the awesome views of Lupin Falls.
Another approachable trail at just 900 metres and about 20 minutes, this hike starts at Highway 28. You can explore the old-growth cedar, Douglas fir, and hemlock as you make your way to the platform where you will be blown away by the view of the lovely Lady Falls.
Just 1.5 hours’ drive from Campbell River, Karst Creek offers a hike with the sounds of rushing water. This interesting hike takes you to cascading falls that lead underground. The well-maintained trail features massive cedars and stunning wildflowers, depending on the time of year you visit. Bright green moss and rocks speak to the name of the creek, which refers to the unique characteristics of the limestone. There’s also a nice spot to picnic pre- or post-hike where you can take in the views of the mountains and Buttle Lake.
This trail is located at the end of Buttle Lake Road. The park offers a number of stunning vistas and hiking trails, including the popular walk from Teresa Lupin Falls to Upper Myra Falls. These are easy hikes that show off the beauty of Buttle Lake, so you can spend a few hours exploring the park.
The trail to the Upper Falls takes you through 4 km of old-growth forest. The beauty of the upper falls is only rivaled by the delights found at the lower falls, where you can bask in the sun on massive boulders with your feet in the cool waters.
The Della Falls trail is the highest waterfall in Canada and one of the most popular hikes in the Central Island region. At 444 metres (1,456 feet), this is a true homage to the power of mother nature. A bit of a lengthy hike, this is definitely not for the faint of heart or the inexperienced. Peak visiting time is mid-July and August is a great month to enjoy comfortable swims in Love Lake.
Just keep in mind that there are serious challenges, including treacherous slippery rock crossings, ducking and climbing due to massive fallen trees, and extreme climbs and descents. It is also a lot more overgrown than what you will find in most trails, however, the trails are well marked with flags to keep you on track. True outdoor enthusiasts will enjoy the challenge and come to appreciate this magnificent sight.
Where to Stay
Centrally located in the heart of downtown Campbell River, Coast Discovery Inn offers all the comforts and amenities of home to complete your trip to British Columbia. The hotel is also conveniently located across the street from the ferry terminal, which is ideal for your anticipated day trips.
You’ll be nearby to great shopping, dining, and entertainment. Take a casual stroll to enjoy sea breezes on Discovery Pier. You might get lucky and spot a salmon, eagle, or whale while you take in views of Discovery Passage, Quadra Island, and the breathtaking views of the Coast Mountain range across the waters to the Mainland.
Enjoy well-appointed guest rooms with the following amenities:
● Free Wi-Fi
● Complimentary hot buffet breakfast
● Complimentary parking
● Fitness facility and whirlpool
● Pet-friendly and accessible rooms
● Convenient access to the Tyee Plaza, which houses retail shops, the Campbell River Visitors Information Centre, and Chamber of Commerce
What are you waiting for? Campbell River awaits. Book today and don’t forget to share your photos with us using #NoPlaceLikeCoast and mentioning @coasthotels.
Header Photo Courtesy of DSLr Book, Upper Campbell and Elk Falls