Explore our favourite road and trail routes around Victoria, and beyond, that offer both great views and awesome climbs!
Cowichan Valley Routes
Colossal Cobble Hill Climb
12 km Cobble Hill
Challenging single-track, great views and some awesome climbs… this 12-km Cobble Hill Mountain running route is epic! Prepare for a great adventure! To extend your run, you can include the trails around the Quarry (Kingslet Lake) and towards Kinsol Trestle.
Prevost Perfection or Pergatory?
17 km Duncan
One of the most challenging climbs in the Cowichan Valley, the views from the summit of Mt. Prevost are stunning and worth the pain. This area is blessed with a myriad of delightful trails, a great mix of terrain and some serious elevation gain. Most main trails are well marked. While the main trails are fairly well maintained, many of the smaller branch trails tend to be more technical “single-track”. Expect mountain bikers!
Epic Mt. Tzouhalem Challenge
20 km Duncan
This Mt. Tzouhalem Challenge route is truly epic. 20 km of technical single-track, challenging climbs to some of the most spectacular views on the southern Island, this is a must-do run for serious trail runners. For an easier route up the mountain, begin at the Kaspa Rd. trailhead at the top of The Properties subdivision off Maple Bay Road.
Great Galloping Goose 15K
15 km Metchosin
The longest trail route in and around Victoria, “The Goose” is a 57 km rail-trail, connecting downtown Victoria to the Sooke Potholes and Leechtown. Being an old railway line, the trail is flat and very easy to run. This section of The Goose is a rural delight as it travels through maple and arbutus-laden forest and rolling farmland. The trail is well-marked with directional signs and kilometer markers. Surface is excellent for running. To extend your run, continue either direction to connect to several good running or swimming parks: Thetis Lake, Matheson Lake, Sooke Potholes, Sea-to-Sea Regional Park and Sooke Hills Regional Park Reserve. Washrooms and water are not available on this section of the trail. Dogs can be off-leash, but under control. (Note: this section of the trail has several road crossings.)
Routes Outside Victoria and
28 km Hornby Island
Mt. Geoffrey on Hornby Island is one of the very best running destinations on the coast! Immerse yourself in the myriad of delightful and easily runnable trails that meander through cool, fern-laden forests of maple, fir and arbutus on the lower sections of the mountain, then enjoy the great views over Denman and Vancouver Islands to the west on higher sections. Did we say runnable? You will love running these trails! Beginning and ending at the ferry (think pub!), this route will show you why we keep coming back year after year…
High Divide – Seven Lakes Basin Loop
30 km Olympic Penninsula
At 30 km and with an elevation gain of 1620m, the High Divide – Seven Lakes Basin Loop near Port Angles, Washington makes for a worthy day trip from Victoria. Spectacular mountain scenery, delicious single-track running and enough climbing to satisfy any mountain goat, this route will reward the serious trail runner with an unforgettable experience. Note that bear spray is required.
33 km Strathcona Park
At an elevation of 2093m, Mt. Albert Edward is one of the highest peaks in Strathcona Park, which is one of the largest parks on Vancouver Island. The route up Albert Edward begins and ends at Paradise Meadows (Mt. Washington) with a few hundred metres of easy boardwalk. From here the trail becomes increasingly more technical and steep the closer to Albert Edward one gets. This is high alpine running at its best: remote and scenic, with alpine lakes, wildflowers, whiskey jacks and incredibly crisp, clean mountain air! The final climb up the exposed, scree slope of Albert Edward is long and arduous, but spectacular vistas of snow-capped mountains are your reward. The return route takes you past several beautiful alpine lakes, where swimming is sublime and the perfect way to end your epic 33-km mountain run.