Vancouver Island Trails Information Society
Vancouver Island Trails Information Society

Book 3 (Northern Vancouver Island), 9th Edition (2002)

Book 3 (Northern Vancouver Island), 9th Edition (2002)

Page 19, Creatures Great and Small

A few grizzly bears have been spotted recently near Strathcona Park and other parts of Northern Vancouver Island, including around Woss Lake, Tahsis and Port McNeill, according to a report in the Times Colonist newspaper on August 12, 2010.  They appear to be young males who had swum across from the mainland.  There have been sporadic grizzly bear sightings on the Island for at least the past 10 years or so. 

Page 39, Comox Glacier Trail

Ken Rodonets advises that TimberWest has improved their road: one can now drive right up to the trail head.  Use caution going in there due to logging trucks ... access only from 6 pm to 6 am Monday to Friday.  (April, 2005)

Pages 40-41, Kookjai Mountain and page 106, map D4

Cliff Umpleby of Island Alpine Guides reports on the current access (August 2008) from Cumberland via Timberwest roads around Comox Lake to the Cougar Lake trailhead for the Kookjai Mountain region, including Tatsno Lakes, Black Cat Mountain and access to the Comox Glacier.  He states that, "If you are not in past the security by 6am they will not let you in again until 4pm currently. If you have a VHF radio they will let you up." But security restrictions are changing, almost daily, so check ahead if possible."

Page 48, Della Falls - Drinkwater Creek trail

We have received a report that due to heavy snowpack last winter, the is a lot of blowdown and snow pack still in some parts of the valleys.  In fact, the Drinkwater trail to Della Falls is apparently not recommended by BC Parks - blowdown and a bridge out. A ford is required, but the word is that the bridge might be replaced soon. (July, 2008)

Page 61, footnote about Col. William Foster

When Foster and Albert McCarthy completed the first ascent of Mount Robson, "Conrad Kain did the route-finding, chopped hundreds of steps in difficult conditions and then made sure both men were safe on the arduous descent. The full story is available in Bruce Fairley's recent Canadian alpine anthology."  We thank Paul Walton for this addendum.

Page 72, Rousseau footnote

Ralph Rosseau died from a fall into a crevasse on Mount Septimus, not Mount Arrowsmith.  We thank Peter Rothermel for this correction.

Pages 103,179 & 183, Nisnak Lake, Gem Lake, Upper Adam Road, Paradise Meadows, Mt. Schoen

Don Leard, an active hiker in the Campbell River area, passes on the following information.

He tried to reach Nisnak Lake, accessing by Upper Adam Road (Page 183). He was only able to go about 1 km to the "gravel bar and fine view of Mt Schoen and falls" where the trail became completely impassable and he gave up trying to go there. There were side trails that led nowhere.

He has hiked to Gem Lake (page 102) in the past and now found the access along Oyster River Main closed off by a logging company. They will not let anyone use the road even on weekends. Gem Lake is in Strathcona Park but now no one is able to get in to this area. He says it is beautiful there. (August, 2005)

Page 156, Bill's Trail (Mount H'Kusam)

Amend text as follows:  Accessed from the corner of Sabre Road in Sayward, Bill's Trail climbs up Mount H'Kusam to an elevation of 1670 m. There are plenty of breath-taking vistas, so don't forget your camera. The highlight is an expansive view over Salmon Bay and the Salmon River estuary and views of Johnstone Strait. This is a steep climb in a wilderness environment, so carry adequate mountain hiking gear. A round trip takes about six hours.... A trail map is available at the White River Court and the tourist information centre near the Sayward Junction.  Stowe Creek Trail (Mount H'Kusam) ascends the other side of the mountain from a rough access road (four-by-four vehicles only.) Bill adds that there are "even better loops and views to be enjoyed, plus water, and real climbing challenges, if desired. Connects to Bill's Trail via a steep but safe pass." The route is shown on the back of the Bill's Trail map.  (March, 2003)

Page 213, Cape Scott Provincial Park and the proposed North Coast Trail

The trail should be completed in the fall, 2007. It will be constructed with a new "hut to hut" system and include  boardwalks, campsites, outhouses and bear caches. However, the trail in not yet complete. Hikers are requested to avoid using any part of the route until after construction is finished. Also see

 for additional information. 

According to a recent article in British Columbia Magazine (summer 2007 issue), the North Coast Trail may be completed as early as September 2007. "It will give backpackers the option of walking a 61 kilometre circuit: 15 kilometres from the main parking lot to Nissen Bight, then eastward along the new 46 kilometre trail to Shushartie Bay, with a water taxi pick-up at the end."

In an article in the Victoria Times Colonist of July 3, 2007, it was noted that a recent grant of almost $250,000 from the Island Coastal Economic Trust should help ensure that the North Coast Trail can be finished by this fall.  The trail will extend the existing route from Nissen Bight to Shushartie Bay, providing another 46 km of trails, it said.  The addition will see about 2,000 metres of boardwalk, 240 metres of stairs and 250 meters of retaining walls, as well as six new campsites and two cable cars, according to the Times Colonist.

Update May 11, 2008: The Victoria Times Colonist newspaper reports that the 43km North Coast Trail was formally opened yesterday. "The new trail links with the existing Cape Scott trail, forming a 58-kilometre stretch west from Port Hardy... Unlike the West Coast Trail, the new trail won't require advance bookings, at least for the first year."  There may be a reservation system in the future.

Vancouver Island Trails Information Society