I love hiking in Goldstream Park, along the narrow paths that wind up and down through the thick rainforest. The Niagara Creek hike, leading up to the (lesser known) Niagara Falls of Goldstream Park, is a short but steep trail that winds its way up a deep gorge.
The trail starts in the northern section of the park, along the TransCanada Highway. The Malahat starts its ascent here, but the car noise quickly disappears as the forest gets thicker. Soon, all that is heard is Niagara Creek trickling over rocks and tree stumps.
The hiking trail is usually muddy and requires a sturdy pair of hiking boots. The foot bridge is damp and slippery. To get a good photo of the waterfall, you need to traverse uneven ground and jagged rocks. The path eventually diverges; one fork leads to the Gold Mine Trail while the other unofficial trail heads up to the waterfall as well as the trestle railway bridge.
The less-famous Niagara Falls of Victoria is a small, picturesque waterfall. Water cascades into a crystal-clear pool at the bottom. Water volume is highest in the winter; in the summer, during the dry season, only a trickle streams down the rocky face. The lush rainforest dampens the sound. On quiet mornings, the area around the waterfall is frequented by blue herons, woodpeckers and many other types of birds. The Goldstream Campground is located nearby and wading in the shallow pool is a popular activity with campers on hot summer days.
|Niagara Falls, Ontario||Niagara Falls, Victoria BC|
|Width||671 m||5 m|
|Water Volume||6000 m3/second||less than 5 m3/second|
The waterfall is pretty, but there's still more to come along this trail. Keep following the path and you'll end up at the trestle railway bridge that crosses the Niagara Canyon. Don't cross the trestle bridge as it can get really slippery and it's a long, long way down. A single mis-step can be disastrous (plus it reminds us of that scene from the movie Stand By Me).
Hiking along the Niagara Creek in Goldstream Park is a fun and scenic way to spend a couple of hours while discovering Vancouver Island. Find other fun things to do in BC, or visit visit scenic stops and viewpoints, or check out interesting (and wacky) roadside attractions in beautiful British Columbia.