Trafalgar Park

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Trafalgar Park is in the community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen communities that form the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. Below King George Terrace Lookout Point, Trafalgar Park extends down toward the ocean.    The park is composed of large steep sloped rocky outcrops amongst broom, grasses and other plants.  Careful examination of the some rocks reveals the glacial striations. The edge of the park is mostly a rough drop to the Strait of Juan de Fuca as the park lies between Gonzales Bay and McNeill Bay. There is a small secluded pebble beach that is accessed from thirty two concrete steps. The park has a wonderful view of Trial Island, the Salish Sea and the Olympic Mountains of Washington State.  The lookout contains a marker for 15 different locations including the Olympic Mountains to the south. There are rough walking trails throughout the park with benches in several locations. A water fountain is found near the parking area off of King George Terrace. The monument is also located near the parking area. This cairn, named Chikawich after an early village, has a plaque that shows a camas meadow with a deer. This one and half hectare parkland is below the summits of Walbran and Gonzales parks to the west and Anderson Hill Park to the northeast.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 30”  W123º 19’ 11”

Trafalgar Park can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to King George Terrace. Look for the small parking area near the summit of the road where there off street parking in this residential neighborhood.  City buses travel close to this park.

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Maquinna Penzance Green Space

 

Maquinna Penzance Green Space is in seaside community of Oak Bay, one thirteen communities in the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. This green space connects the end of Maquinna Street with Penzance Road along a rough pedestrian pathway. The pathway is about twenty meters long and is bordered by some large rocks, broom shrubs and shoreline pine and spruce trees. This green space provides connection between Trafalger Park and the green space of the Chinese Cemetery. The name Maquinna  may refer to the Nootka Chief who was prominent in the fur trade during the eighteen hundreds. Maquinna has many spelling and is said to refer to the ‘processor of pebbles.’

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 24”  W123º 19’ 18”

Maquinna Penzance Green Space can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to King George Terrace. Turn left onto Crescent Road and follow to the end. Or turn right onto Penzance Road and continue to the end.  There is limited off street parking in this residential neighborhood.  City buses travel close to this park.

Harling Point Green Space

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Harling Point Green Space is in the community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen communities that form the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. The green space is formed by a promontory that projects into the Strait of Juan de Fuca which is part of the Salish Sea. the green is along the perimeter of a cemetery that is known as the Chinese Cemetery at Harling Point and is a National Historic Site of Canada since 1996.   There are several interpretive panels that discuss the cultural history, geology and some natural history of the area. The cemetery was opened in 1903 and is maintained by the Chinese Benevolent Association. The cemetery, a feng shui site, contains gravestones of the early Chinese residents and was closed in 1950.  The twin pillars of the stone altar are frequently decorated with incense and flowers.

Wild flowers carpet this attractive green space in the spring time.  The cemetery lies on a flat promontory that is along the shore of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.  The green space includes the rough pathway along the perimeter and the high tide line that makes for a shoreline rough walk. The walkway strolls across the fault line of two ancient terraines, Wrangellia and Leech River, as noted by the change in color from the pale green to the dark color basalt rocks. The shore line has several glacier erratics that further protect the green space. The waters of the Strait of Juan de Fuca forming part of the Salish Sea provide a beautiful setting for the Olympic Mountains of Washington State. Harling Point was named after a brave local dentist who lost his life trying to save a family whom were tossed in from a small boat by waves during a storm. The shoreline hosts some good tide-pools and it is lovely place to watch sunrises and sunsets. There are a few benches within this green space. Gonzales Park, Gonzales Hill Regional Park, Quimper Park and Trafalger Park are nearby.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 24”  W123º 19’ 25”

Harling Green Space can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to King George Terrace. Turn left onto Crescent Road and follow to the end. Or turn right onto Penzance Road and continue to the end.  There is limited off street parking.  City buses travel close to this park.

Walbran Park

 

Walbran Park is in the community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen communities that form the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. Named after Captain John T. Walbran, a mariner and author of the nineteen o’nine book titled ‘British Columbia Coast Names’, Walbran Park has two sections: it hosts a cairn dedicated to explorations of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and a Second World War observation post.  The Board of Canada established a Historical Site Monument in the park in nineteen twenty-five. The plaque on the cairn indicates that in 1592 the Strait of Juan de Fuca was discovered but it took until 1787 before Charles William Barkley explored the area.  Later, in 1792, Captain George Vancouver explored the Strait and surrounding waterways for the British Government. The area was further explored when Captain Walbran, whom initially served on the British training ship HMS Conway, cruised the Strait of Georgia and areas aboard the SS Quadra. This section is about two hectares in size. Also Walbran Park, take in the breathtaking vista from the World War II platform observation post located across the street from the rock cairn.  The concrete platform provides a fantastic panoramic view of Oak Bay’s and Victoria’s hidden coves and bays. The platform has a metal nineteen step staircase and metal deck. This section, about one hectare in size, of the parkland is also composed of gneiss rock of the Coquitz and Weiss terranes. The rocks show some glacial striations and are mostly covered by mosses, lichens, grasses and springtime flowers. Small shrubs, mostly broom and a few Garry oak trees can also be found in this hilltop parkland. Gonzales Hill Regional Park and Sunny Green Space are nearby.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 42”  W123º 19’ 14”

Walbran Park can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to Denison Road. Turn right onto Denison Road and continue up the hill past the parking area for Gonzales Hill Regional Park to the end of the road. There is limited roadside parking along Denison Road.  City busses travel close to this park and the park can be access by walking up the trail and stepping up the 116 stairs near intersection of Sunny Lane and King George Terrace.  It is near a public beach access to McNeill (Shoal) Bay.

Sunny Beach Access

 

Sunny Beach Access is a beach access in the community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen communities that compose the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. This green space provides access to a cobble sand cove that is surrounded by granodiorite rocks. There is a wonderful view is to the east with Trail Islands and the San Juan island resting on the Salish Sea. McNeill Bay is immediately to the left and Sunny Green Space is west across King George Terrace.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 39”  W123º 19’ 3”

Sunny Green Space can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to Beach Avenue. Turn right onto Beach Avenue then make a left onto Sunny Lane which looks like a shared driveway. The trail to the ocean is at the end of the lane. There is limited parking in this residential area.  City buses travel close to this park.

Sunny Green Space

 

Sunny Green Space is a strip of green space in the community of Oak Bay, one of thirteen communities that compose the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. This green space provides access up a steep slope and is about two meters wide. It is about one hundred and fifty meters up the steep slope using one hundred and sixteen steps up from King George Terrance to Denison Road. The concrete staircase permits a climb up about forty meters and  is uneven in sections. Garry oak trees and small shrubs line the pathway. The Sunny Green Space provides a wonderful workout with a vista reward at the end as Walbran Park is just across the Denison Road and Gonzales Hill Regional Park is further west along Denison Road.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 40”  W123º 19’ 5”

Sunny Green Space can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to Beach Avenue. Turn right onto Beach Avenue then make a right onto Sunny Lane. The pedestrian trail is on the left with a sign that says pathway to Walbran Park. There is limited parking in this residential area.  City busses travel close to this park.

Gonzales Hill Regional Park – Oak Bay

 

Gonzales Hilll Regional Park is a park of the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. Acquired in 1992 by both Victoria and Oak Bay Municipalities and the CRD, the distinctive rounded roof of the Gonzales Observatory Weather Station overlooks Victoria, Oak Bay and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.  This park hosts the heritage building, which was built in nineteen fourteen. The site was used by meteorological scientists for gathering data on atmospheric gases until the late nineteen eighties.  The view from the summit of Gonzales Park, at 200 feet above sea level, is to the southwest over the City of Victoria and the western communities of Esquimalt, Colwood and Metchosin. The rocky outcrops are mostly granodiorite with glacial striations. The rocks are covered with unique wildflowers, various mosses and lichens. Small shrubs and trees cling to the slopes of the park.  A walking pathway leads from the parking area past the observatory and toward Barkley Terrace, a road that connects to King George Terrace. This pathway is really for those who are venturesome as the route eventually leads to Gonzales Bay.  Garry oak and arbutus trees are found in this parkland as well as broom and snowberry shrubs. At Gonzales Bay, in the Municipality of Victoria, picnic tables, toilets and benches overlook the sand and pebble beach.

Geographic Location N48º 24’ 48”  W123º 19’ 28”

Gonzales Hill Regional Park can be reached from the Trans-Canada Highway. Continue along the Hwy 1 into Victoria as it becomes Douglas Street. Turn off Douglas onto Hillside Avenue to head east. Stay on Hillside Avenue as it becomes Lansdowne Road. Continue along Lansdowne Road to reach Foul Bay Road. Continue along Foul Bay Road to reach Fairfield Road. Turn left onto Fairfield Road and continue along to Denison Road. Turn right onto Denison Road and continue up the hill to the reach the parking area on the right. Access to the park is available from several areas.  Parking off Barkley is limited.  Alternatively, start at the sandy beach of Gonzales Bay, climb stairs at the eastern end of the beach onto Crescent Road, keep straight ahead on King George Terrace, turn lead onto Barkley Terrace, climb stairs to observatory.  City buses travel close to this park.