Highlands Valley Loop

The Highlands Valley Loop is a designated cycling trail in the District of the Highlands, B.C. The mountain bicycle trail is accessed from the Bear Mountain Village in Langford, B.C. It is one of several trails intended for training for the Cycling Canada Mountain Bike Team that is also family oriented. This five kilometer loop is incorporated into and around the eighteen hole Valley Golf Course of Bear Mountain. Most of the cycling loop is through second growth Douglas fir, arbutus and small shrubs. There is a good wonderful view toward the Coast Mountains, the Strait of Juan de Fuca in the Salish Sea from along the trail. The route crosses over a small season creek. The Bear Mountain Bike Park is along this route which passes along Hannington Road and under the hydro towers. The Hub, located in the North Langford Athletic Center, has further information about the trails in this area.

Geographic location N48° 28’42” W123°31’55”

Highland Valley Loop can be reached from the Trans Canada Highway also called Hwy1. Turn at Millstream Road and turn left onto Bear Mountain Parkway. Continue along BMP to reach Country Club Way where the North Langford Athletic Facility and the Hub are found at 1907 CCW. The trail starts behind the building near the Finlayson Skills Area and the Bear Finlayson Trail. There is parking in the village area.

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Bear Spirit Green Space

Located on the corners of Players Drive, Spirit Ridge Road and BMP in Langford, BC, this green space is the Bear Spirit Green Space. As a large partially landscaped area, the space provides lovely shades of green to greet those who pass by Players Drive and Spirit Ridge Road. A concrete sidewalk follows the lower perimeter of the green space and leads past the shelter for the postal boxes which are near Quail’s Run. The sidewalk continues to up along the northwest side of Spirit Ridge Road. The rest of this green space natural landscape has Douglas fir and cedar trees with salal, ocean spray, nootka rose and Oregon grape shrubs providing limited ground cover over the terrain. Spirit Ridge Park’s west side borders on this green space. Quail’s Run Park, Spirit Ridge Park, Player’s Park, BMP Park, Bishops Gate Park, Skyline Park and Blue Grouse Park are nearby.

Geographic location N48° 28’27” W123°31’05”

Bear Spirit Green Space can be reached from the Trans Canada Highway also called Hwy1. Turn at Millstream Road and turn left onto Bear Mountain Parkway. Continue along BMP to reach Player’s Drive. The green space is on the right so turn onto Spirit Ridge Drive to find parking. There is limited parking along BMP, Player’s Drive or Spirit Ridge Road near this green space.

Goldstream River Provincial Park

This post is updated here.

Goldstream River Provincial Park

Garry Oak Meadows Park

Garry Oak Meadow Park 6 Garry Oak Meadow Park 8

In View Royal, B.C., there is a three-quarter of a hectare Garry oak meadow with a one hundred and thirty meter long gravel footpath along a ridgeline. Aptly named Garry Oak Meadows Park, the place has the unique plant life that grows under these tall trees. Snowberries, Oregon grape are a few of the shrubs that thrive in this habitat. In the spring camas lilies might be seen although this site was not cultivated extensively. There are also a few tree stumps indicating that the area had been selectively logged many years earlier. Parson’s Bridge Park, Burchill Park, Mellor Park, Nursery Hill Park, Jalan Park, Atkin Road Green Space, the Galloping Goose Trail and Trans Canada Trail as well as Thetis Lake Park are nearby. The park is part of Nursery Hill Trail Loop described by the Town of View Royal.

Geographical location N48° 27’ 35” W123° 27’ 51”

Garry Oak Meadow Park can be accessed from the Trans Canada Highway, Hwy1. Exit onto the Old Island Highway and stay to the left to merge with traffic going under the freeway and railway overpasses. Turn onto Six Mile Road and look for the Atkins Road Green Space to parking as there is limited parking along Nursery Hill Road or Six Mile Road; parking can be found at Atkins Road Green Space. The park is along Nursery Hill Road. City buses travel along the Six Mile Road and Atkins Road.

Kelvin Grove Park, View Royal, B.C.

Kelvin Grove 3 Kelvin Grove 5

Kelvin Grove Park is a one hectare forested area along Mill Stream in View Royal, B.C. A sixty meter long trail from Atkins Road leads to a wooden platform that provides view of the ravine for Mill Stream. Mill Stream, or Millstream Creek as it is often called, is the main waterway in a watershed that starts in the Gowlland Tod range of the Highlands and includes seven lakes and numerous ponds. A visit to Kelvin Grove Park provides views of cedar trees and sword ferns along the slopes of the ravine. The wetlands near the stream have skunk cabbage and other riparian plants. There are no formal trails in this nature park and the viewing platform is along the steepest part of the parkland. Wilfert Park is on the south side of Mill Stream. Duffus Trail Park, the Galloping Goose Trail, Parson’s Access Park, Mill Cove Park, Burchill Park, Mill Hill Regional Park, Thetis Lake Regional Park are nearby.

Geographical location N48° 27’ 10” W123° 28’ 5”

Kelvin Grove Park can be accessed from the Trans Canada Highway, Hwy1. Exit onto the Island Highway and stay to the left to merge with traffic going under the freeway and railway overpasses. Turn right onto Six Mile Road and then left onto Atkins Road. The park is on left near Creekside Glen townhomes at 199 Atkins Road. There is limited roadside parking along Atkin Road although city buses travel along this roadway.

Mill Hill Regional Park

Mill Hill Thetis Lake Calypso Trail 5 Mill Hill Thetis Lake Calypso Trail 20

Mill Hill stands two hundred and two meters above sea level and lies within the parkland called Mill Hill Regional Park in View Royal, B.C. As a regional park since nineteen eighty, this park is kept by the Capital Regional District which has a large fenced yard with several maintenance buildings within the parkland. The main parking area and trails are in Langford, B.C., where the partially paved trail (an old fire road), called Auburn Trail, leads to the top of the hill. There are toilets and picnic tables near this parking area. The Auburn Trail skirts the south and western slopes. The east side of the park is within View Royal and is bordered by Edwards Park and several private properties. This northeastern slope of Mill Hill is accessed using Calypso Trail. The Calypso Trail, about two kilometer trail long, is a rough pathway along Hwy1 and becomes a woodland trail as it climbs to the summit to connect with Auburn Trail. Douglas fir, arbutus, western red cedar and garry oak trees are seen along the trail. Near the summit are several shallow wetlands, moss covered rocks and small meadow areas where big-leaf maple, red alder are seen. Salal, Oregon grape and other small shrubs are seen in the park. Near the junction of the two trails are the concrete foundation blocks of the nineteen fifty eight fire lookout tower. A rock cairn with brass direction location lines on its surface lies near the concrete blocks. Calypso Trail then continues to the parking lot down a steep section on the eastern side of the hill. The park has several ecosystems along its slopes although most have been modified over the past hundred years to meet the needs of the area. Along the lower northeastern section of the Calypso Trail, beside Hwy1, pick some Himalayan blackberries in the late summer. A stroll along the forested section of this trail, in the springtime, reveals the small wildflowers like camas, white fawn lilies and fairyslippers (Calypso bulbosa), the namesake of this trail. A visit to this seventy-one hectare parkland is worthwhile and easily explored as a walk in your backyard.

Geographical location N48° 27’ 10” W123° 28’ 55” parking lot

Mill Hill Regional Park can be accessed from the Trans Canada Highway, Hwy1, and is located at 490 Atkins Road. Exit from Hwy1 to reach the Island Highway and turn right onto Six Mile Road. Continue along Six Mile Road just after the Galloping Goose Trail overpass, turn left onto Atkins Road. The park entrance on the right is on the right and is along a curve of the road in this quiet urban neighborhood. A second road to the right provides access to the maintenance buildings that are within the chain-link fenced area of the park. A large paved parking area is near the park buildings while a much larger gravel area is within the fenced area. City buses travel along Atkins Road.

There are several documents on the ecosystems within Mill Hill Regional Park.

Robin Hill Park

Robin Hill Park access betweeen homes 5 Robin Hill Park 2

Robin Hill Park is a rocky Garry oak area in View Royal, B.C. At one and a half hectares this park is mostly steep rocky outcrops of granite covered with thick beds of mosses, lichen and ferns. There are some large Garry oak and Douglas fir trees and several moss cover stumps in this park. It was selectively logged in the early twentieth century. Robin Hill Park borders along the paved walkway on Chilco Road, along the turn-a-bout of Kaleigh Avenue and between homes 42 and 27 Carly Lane. Robin Hill Park is immediately east of Edward Park. Tread with care along the trail, that includes several staircases and steps, in this parkland as there is much to be enjoyed. Mill Hill Regional Park, Edwards Park, Chilco Park, the Galloping Goose Trail, Thetis Lake Park, Nursery Hill Park, Garry Oak Meadows Park and Kelvin Grove Park are nearby.

Geographical location N48° 27’ 30” W123° 28’ 10”

Robin Hill Park can be accessed from the Trans Canada Highway, Hwy1. Exit onto the Island Highway and turn right onto Six Mile Road. Turn left onto Chilco Road, which is just past the overpass for the Galloping Goose Trail. Stay on Chilco Road and follow to the end. The park is at the end of the road on the right side of the trail. There is limited roadside parking along Chilco Road. City buses travel along Six Mile Road and Atkins Road.