Local Big Tree Sights

Big Douglas-fir, Francis King Park

With gas prices at record highs, we have been taking fewer back country and longer distance field trips to see trees. Luckily, from pretty much anywhere in the south island area it is possible to ride a bike, walk, or drive a short distance to see beautiful specimens. In the rich, mild coastal environment big trees grow everywhere.

In this post I will share some of my favourite local big tree tours that I return to often to experience the sensation of being in a lush, and rare, old growth forest, or just to stand next to a single big tree left over from the old days.

Note: this information, and more, is available in the See Them page.

So save gas (and the atmosphere), and be with some of the biggest trees around, right here on southern Vancouver Island.

Victoria Area
Native Tree Species

    1.    Francis King Regional Park (some of the biggest trees closest to Victoria, including one on the B.C. Big Tree Registry - largest Douglas-fir in the CRD)
    2.    Beacon Hill Park (designated Heritage Tree Status)
    3.    Thetis Lake
    4.    Royal Roads/DND Lands (Urban big trees in Colwood, including the 2nd and 3rd largest Douglas-firs in the CRD)
    5.    Goldstream Park (very accessible old growth 16 km from downtown Victoria)
    6.    East Sooke Road/East Sooke Park (along East Sooke Rd. is one of the biggest Western red-cedar in the CRD)
   7.     Ardmore Golf Course (Saanich - massive Douglas-firs)
   8.    Witty's Lagoon Beach parking lot (Metchosin)
   9.    Royal Colwood Golf Club (has the most extensive collection of varied-age Douglas-fir and Garry oak forest in an urban setting)
  10.   Victoria Area Arbutus (Arbutus are coast-hugging, broad-leafed, evergreen trees. They are abundant in parks and urban areas. The largest is found on Thetis Island, one of the Gulf Islands)

Non-native Tree Species

   1. Beacon Hill Park (Heritage Tree Site: many exotic trees such as Giant sequoia)
   2. Victoria Area (Urban Giant sequoia of huge proportions)

Sooke Area
Fat Douglas-fir, Phillips Road, Sooke
    1.    Sooke River Road/Galloping Goose Trail
    2.    Sooke Potholes Park 
    3.    Sunriver Park - Phillips Road
    3.    Matheson Lake Regional Park
    4.    Humpback Road (near Goldstream Park in Langford, a nice addition to a drive or hike in the park)
    5.    Muir Creek (threatened by logging) - west of Sooke
    6.    Roche Cove Regional Park (the map in this post has directions to big Douglas-fir and Arbutus in a shore line area of this beautiful park)
    7.    Juan de Fuca Provincial Park - China Beach 
    8.   French Beach - nice, older second growth forest with lots of Sitka spruce
    9.   Chin Beach Trail Lone Cedar - grows on the Juan de Fuca Rural Resource Lands west of Sooke, 13 km past China Beach parking lot.

Enjoy our local trees. See them, save them.


  1. Anonymous28/5/12

    For the Victoria region, What about the trees of Gowlland Tod Provincial Park?
    One tree near the waterfall off the cascades trail is 70.1 metres tall and at least a good 3 metres wide (too steep to measure).
    The trees of John Dean Provincial Park are up to 70.4 metres tall, and about as wide.
    Goldstream still holds the crown for Victoria-area bigtrees, at 80+ metres.


    1. Hey Sam,

      I have been meaning to get out to Gowlland Tod and John Dean. Looking to post about those plus 70 metre trees soon.

      Goldstream is one of my favourite bits of old growth close to home (in Sooke). Humpback Road through Langford provides a pretty direct route.


Leave a comment - no trees are harmed in doing so! Comments are moderated for spam.

Related Posts

Related Posts with Thumbnails