8/27/2012

Gulf View Picnic Ground



If you happen to be in North Saanich visiting the big trees of John Dean Park, you might consider adding a stop at the nearby Gulf View Picnic Ground. This accessible 2.5 acre park has been hosting the public since 1936 after a successful public campaign to preserve land and viewscapes for public use and recreation.

This space is also known as National Gravity Net Station #9041-1979, which is marked by a small benchmark disk on site (N 48° 37.042 W 123° 24.980). Gravity Net Stations "contain information pertaining to gravity standardization networks in Canada and abroad, gravity mapping in Canada, instrumental parameters, digital terrain and crustal motion." Wow - watch for gravity anomalies!

Little bench, big tree
The view is the best thing here as there are not any monster trees left in this location. However, by most people's standards, the Douglas-fir trees that are here are nothing to shake a stick at.


Spectacular Gulf view
As the name implies, this small picnic ground has great views to Bazan Bay, the southern Gulf Islands, the San Juan Islands and Mount Baker. Here you are looking at a unique ecozone that produced some of the biggest trees on the planet.

Along the east coast of Vancouver Island is prime coastal Douglas-fir territory. John Dean Park, a short drive up Mt. Newton from the picnic ground, is a good example of a mature Douglas-fir forest.

The climate in this small, narrow ecozone is the driest on the island, and creates perfect conditions for Douglas-fir, Grand fir, Arbutus, and Garry oak to thrive.

Nice trees and a nice view
Gulf View Picnic Ground is a great place for a stop before or after a John Dean Park hike through the giant trees. Take a load off, have bite to eat, or just sit or lay around and enjoy this beautiful public space.

Getting There

The picnic ground is east off of East Saanich Road in North Saanich. It is near the intersection of E. Saanich Road and Dean Park Road (the access to John Dean Prov. Park). Park is open during daylight hours.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous13/1/13

    Sadly, the only reason there is a good view is because many trees were hacked down. On the 11th of January, two days ago, the property owner on the right cut down a grand fir right on the park's line. The tree was 42.5 metres tall and several hundred years old- very old for the species. I do not know if any of the remaining trees are even 35 metres tall.

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