QUADRA ISLAND TRAILS

QUADRA ISLAND TRAILS

  1. Welcome to the Quadra Island Trails website which has today, April 6th., 2016,  begun the process of being built and developed by Greg Ross and my contact is: alpinewriting@lycos.com. I will remove my advertising from a previous website here, among 10,000 other jobs here. We thank WordPress.com for this free site and assure them that it is solely used to promote outdoor activities and to help our community to manage our trails as best as possible and to share our lovely trails and scenery with all of our visitors. Each trail will eventually receive its own page here and be rated for hiking, biking, and other activities. Rock climbing is another sport popular on Quadra and some of our trails lead to rock climbing and scrambling sites.  We do our best to clear, mark, and bridge our trails, all with volunteer workers, and we have people from around the world hiking these trails every summer and telling us year after year how impressed they are with their Quadra Island hiking experiences. However, we still occasionally have people who get lost or cannot find the start of a trail. This website and our group of trails workers hold no responsibility for any injuries or loss experienced by users of our trails on Quadra.

In time we will get this website more accurate but in the meantime remember to prepare well for your hike and if possible ask locals who know these trails before hiking them. There are cougars, wolves, and black bears on this island so please keep you dog on a leash for its own safety and do not let it run free as it will be there one minute and could vanish into a predator’s tummy the next minute. Cats and small dogs are particularly vulnerable and the many eagles on the island will snatch them in a flash if you do not monitor your pet very closely.

Camping is permitted on Quadra provided you keep your campsite clean and leave no litter behind. Be warned that every summer there is a total ban on all open fires and this must be strictly observed, thank you. The fine for having an open fire during the ban can be very severe.

Quadra Island lies across Discovery Passage beside Campbell River, Vancouver Island, and is about 26 miles long and averages about three miles wide. Quadra is heavily forested, and in places is very rugged, with mountains up to 2,000′ high. On the island are numerous well-kept forest trails and forest walks, some near the residential areas and others back in the wilderness where you might see wolf, cougar, or black bear; as well as beaver, mink, otter, and black-tail deer. The views east from Quadra are spectacular as the large photo shows, and many trails have viewpoints east and west. There are some jewels of small and medium lakes on Quadra too; some high up, and other down near roads. The purpose of this website is to give descriptions of Quadra’s trails so that people can access the information online before deciding to hike any particular trail.

Although Quadra is a relatively small island make no mistake, people do get lost on the trails here; and the terrain is deadly rugged in places with many hidden cliffs, bluffs, and impossible undergrowth. Stay on the trails and if you think you are lost, stop immediately and backtrack a little way until you know you are back on the correct trail. If you have a cell phone or locator beacon such as a Spot, and you are wary of trying to backtrack, then call for help. Plan your hike carefully, take food and water, extra clothes especially a raincoat, and it is advisable to tell someone exactly where you will be hiking and when you expect to return. Below photo shows volunteers preparing logs for a new hiking/biking trails bridge near Morte Lake, Quadra Island.

TRAILS:

(1) The Surge Narrows Trail to the Surge Rapids Lookout:

To reach this trail drive far north on Quadra, past Village Bay Lakes and past the adventure lodge and to the end of the road. You will see the ocean very near here at the car-park and the start of the Surge Narrows Trail. This trail is about 30 minutes long and takes you to a rocky shelf beside the ocean where the tidal river flowing past the rocks is quite a spectacle. It is the ocean, but most of the time looks like a huge powerful river as it surges across the rocks. Vessels regularly get into trouble trying to navigate down these rapids. From this rocky lookout the trail becomes more rugged and continues on north for 15 minutes or so and ends on a bouldery shoreline in the Octopus Islands Provincial Park.

100_0717

The trails are signposted.

(2) Stramberg Lake and Oldgrowth Grove Trail:

This trail begins on the left, just to the left of a logging road which climbs into the forest here, just as the first of the Village Bay Lakes comes into view on your right, as you drive north towards Village Bay Lakes. This trail has not been maintained except for some work on the route into the old growth grove. The old Stramberg Lake Trail branches off this trail to the left about an hour’s hike from the road, but the trail is overgrown and very hard to follow, apart from the odd bit of flagging tape which may still be on the odd tree. Time taken to hike from Village Bay Lakes Road to old growth grove is about 2 hours. There is another way to the old growth grove and to Stramberg Lake, via the Open Bay Main Road, which will be dealt with in its own section below.

northern sawwhet owl, Quadra Island

A northern saw-whet owl photographed perched alongside the Stramberg Lake/Old Growth Grove Trail.

(3) The Open Bay Main Road trails to Stramberg Lake and The Old Growth Grove

To get to Open Bay Main Road drive north on Quadra until you pass the Granite Bay Road turnoff on your left. Continue down the steep hill almost to its bottom, but turnoff to your left on the dirt road near the bottom of that hill. This road takes you through to the Granite Bay Road and there puts you near Granite Bay. After you have turned left onto Open Bay Main Road drive for about 12-15 minutes until you pass over a larger bridge and then take the next road on your right. This leads past Stramberg Lake, visible through the trees, and after a mile or so to the trail beginning into the old growth grove. It is best to have someone who knows this turnoff with you as the old logging roads can be confusing and wrong road forks easily taken.

 

(4) The Newton Lake Trail and the Wyatt Bay-Small Inlet Trail

The Newton Lake Trail is a very popular trail on Quadra and the lake is a pristine gem perched in an almost alpine setting among forested knolls. Because it is about a 30-minute drive from Heriot Bay to get to the start of this trail, the trail and the lake do not receive many visitors compared to the trails and lakes nearer to the island’s residential areas.  Newton Lake’s water is cold and clear and it is a popular swimming spot during hotter weather, and popular for campers.

To access the Newton lake Trail drive north from Heriot Bay about 15 minutes until you see the Granite Bay Road on your left. Turn left here and head towards Granite Bay. You will, after driving for about 20 minutes, pass some buildings and house on your right as you near the main settlement. Then, about a half-mile after passing those buildings you will see the signpost for the Newton Lake Trail on your right beside the road. Here there is a dirt side-road which you drive up a short distance to the start of the Newton Lake Trail on your left. Park there, and enjoy the hike, which takes about an hour to the lake and is a gradual climb.

From Newton Lake the trail continues off to the left and then down a steep, forested slope to sea level and along through the forest where you can see the ocean of Small Inlet on your left. Follow the trail and it soon heads inland away from the water and goes through a low forested saddle then ends  in Wyatt Bay on the east side of the island. In fact this short 10-minute level trail from Small Inlet across to Wyatt Bay is used as a portage route as well as a hiking trail, as that narrow isthmus allows you to carry a canoe or kayak from one side of the island to the other easy in 10 minutes or so. The Wyatt Bay side is in the Octopus Islands Provincial Marine Park, a popular kayaking and camping wilderness area not accessible by road. The land forming this isthmus was recently purchased by Quadra’s Land Conservancy Group with government help and many public cash donations, and saved from logging, to keep this special area natural and beautiful for all to enjoy.

 

 

more Quadra trails and trails information to come as this website progresses….

also check: Quadra Island General Information & Recreation