The largest park in the region, the Sooke Hills provides a buffer to Greater Victoria Water Supply Catchment and includes Mount Braden which at (471m) is one of the highest peaks in the CRD Regional Parks system. The Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail within the park is part of The Great Trail route.
Trail Rating: Challenging - not suitable for all ages and abilities
Size: 4090 ha
Location: Langford and Juan de Fuca Electoral Area
Hours: Sunrise to Sunset
- Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail (forms part of The Great Trail) video
- Goldstream River suspension bridge time-lapse video
- Viewing platform at Waugh Creek Falls
- Peaceful forest scenes and hilltop vistas
Things to Do
Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail offers outstanding hiking and cycling, and in some sections, horseback riding, that spans rivers, forests and hilltops.
Note: The Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail is challenging and is not an all ages and abilities route.
The 13km unpaved trail offers a unique wilderness experience as it travels through remote areas and wildlife habitat. The trail lies between the Humpback Reservoir in Sooke Hills Wilderness Regional Park and the Capital Regional District-Cowichan Valley Regional District boundary. Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail provides part of both The Great Trail and the Vancouver Island Spine Trail routes.
The Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail provides an opportunity to connect with nature; to experience and benefit from this natural landscape. The trail travels through both open areas and sheltered woodlands.
Rest at the viewing platform, 2.5 km from the Humpback trailhead, to take in the sights and sounds of Waugh Creek Falls, which flows forcefully in the winter and spring. From there, it is 0.5km to the suspension bridge across the Goldstream River.
The hilltop vistas of the surrounding mountains and Finlayson Arm are spectacular in the northern section. There are views of Greater Victoria in the distance. The views are the reward for the effort made to reach the top!
Equestrians are permitted on the north end of the trail, from the Cowichan Valley Regional District-Capital Regional District boundary southwards for 4km.
There are steep grades up to 16%, narrow sections and rocky, gravel surfaces along the route. Hike and ride within your limits and on sections of the trail suitable to your skill level. This is a shared-use trail, please watch for other users and travel at safe speeds.
There are 3 information kiosks, 2 toilets, a viewing platform and suspension bridge.
How to Get There
By vehicle from Victoria to south trail head
Follow the Trans-Canada Highway from Victoria, and turn left on West Shore Parkway. At the roundabout, continue straight to stay on Westshore Pkwy. Turn right onto Meridian Ave. Turn left onto Irwin Rd, stay left at Humpback Rd. Destination is on the right.
By vehicle from Shawnigan Lake to north trail head
There is no CRD parking lot at the north trail head. A Cowichan Valley Regional District parking lot for the Cowichan Valley Trail is located on Sooke Lake Road in Shawnigan Lake. Follow the trail south for 9 kms where it joins to the Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail north trail head.
By bike or foot from Victoria to south trail head
Follow the Galloping Goose Regional Trail that begins at Harbour Road in Victoria for approximately 15 km. Follow “The Great Trail” signage in the City of Langford to Sooke Hills Wilderness Regional Park on Humpback Road. Two parking lots provide access to Sooke Hills Wilderness and Mount Wells Regional Parks.
By bike or foot from Shawnigan Lake to north trail head
Follow the Cowichan Valley Trail – Malahat Connector south from the Sooke Lake Road entrance for approximately 9 km, where it joins Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail north trail head.