Port Alberni is known for its picturesque natural beauty!  What better way of seeing the true beauty of this incredible Valley than hiking! When I think about living in the Heart of Vancouver Island. I imagine that the trails are like veins pumping fresh oxygen and life from the heart of our beautiful Valley; keeping our lush forests standing strong and our rivers and lakes filled with the cleanest and freshest waters in the world. Each trail in Port Alberni has its own uniqueness. Port Alberni has over 100 trails, and all are beautiful in their own way.  

Port Alberni, Hiking the Heart of Vancouver Island

Starting off with the largest waterfall in Canada, Della Falls at 440 meters high. Della Falls lies within Strathcona Provincial Park. The river valley will take your breath away as you canoe down and hike Great Central Lake. You will hike a wide and flat trail to Drinkwater Creek, and feel the magical presence of your ancestries through the beautiful and sacrist Spruce and Hemlock forests. Once you cross over Margaret Creek, the trails become narrower and harsher.  As you make your way to the top, to take in Della Falls in the distances. You will realize that there is no other place like this! Let the tranquility fill your heart and a sense of peace overcomes you. This place is a true Heaven! 

The Stamp Long River Trail is an ancient growth rainforest, untouched by mankind. You can feel the energy from the prehistoric Cedar and Fir trees that stand shoulder to shoulder, along the entire trail for hundreds upon hundreds of years.  If you close your eyes, you can almost feel the people that lived before you, that used this trail for hunting or traveling from one place to another. There are several short switchbacks that provide the most incredible views of the river trail. This river is one of the most breathtaking gems on Vancouver Island. Hikers have spotted eagles, hawks and bears as they hike, the true rainforest of Vancouver Island.    

The Log Train Trail, in Log Trail Regional Park, offers 25 km of amazing diverse trails through the Alberni Valley.  Historically, the trail was once used as a rail bed developed in the early 1900s as part of the Bainbridge Mill rail logging operation. Starting along the foot of Beaufort Range, the trail leads to the McLean Mill Historic Site.  This trail will walk you through the history of logging and mining on Vancouver Island.  The tracks and ties have long been removed from the old rail grade. There are maintained culvert and bridge crossings of streams along the trail. 

Fossli Provincial Park lies on the south side of the Stirling Arm of Sproat Lake. You can walk the 2.5 km trail that leads to a second-growth forest and that leads to an old homestead site on Sproat Lake. Once you reach the lake, you can take in the most stunning views you will ever see, as you relax on the pebble beach. There are numerous waterfalls at St Andrew Creek, as it zigs zags through the park before flowing into Sproat Lake. The beach is perfect for swimming and in Fall you can watch the Coho salmon migrate. There is a short trail that heads west from the beach to a beaver pond, here is a perfect place to bird watch.  

There is nothing like hiking and the fresh oxygen being pumped from the forest around you, healing your lungs with the freshest air. My favorite part is watching the trees and shrubbery change during each season. As in Fall watching the leaves fall to the ground and feeling the crunch beneath your feet or watching the land come alive again after the harsh winter.  Hiking cleanses the soul and connects you to nature! In my opinion, Port Alberni has the most incredible trails on Vancouver Island, and all are on our back doorstep.