East Sooke Regional Park, located 40km west of Victoria, boasts spectacular ocean views and rugged west coast wilderness. The park encompasses 1,434 hectares of remote rainforest and offers something for everyone. Enjoy the 50km network of interior and beach trails rated easy (Aylard Farm) to challenging (Coast Trail), pocket beaches, and picnic areas.
Drive Time: 1 hour (from Victoria)
Seasons: All Season
Access: Aylard Farm, Anderson Cove & Pike Road Trail
Local Tip: Silver Spray Drive Access via Silver Spray Trail is on private property and is currently closed until further notice.
Map of east sooke park by CRD found here.
Aylard Farm is tucked into the southeast corner of East Sooke Park and is the closest of the three park entrances to Victoria. The farm provides easy access to beautiful sandy beaches and sweeping views of the Olympic Mountains with day hang and picnic areas.
Aylard Beach with glimpses of the Olympic Mountains and Coast Trail to the west
The Aylard Farm parking lot fills up quickly on weekends. We recommend an early start if you want to snag a spot!
Aylard Farm parking lot Friday June 24, 2022 (8:15am)
From the parking lot Aylard Beach access is a 5 minute (340m) walk through the old orchard. Washrooms are located at the parking lot trail head as well as the picnic area at the end of the trail. This corner of East Sooke Park is kid and pet friendly with tidal pools to explore and shaded tree areas, while still providing expansive views of the Salish Sea.
Aylard Farm trail marker
Aylard Farm Picnic Area
If you are up from a quick scramble and more of an adventure try out the Creyke Point Trail. The trail loops east from the beach access along the coast and offers a rewarding lookout at Creyke Point.
History: The point was named by Capt Henry Kellett in 1846 after a survey officer by then name of Richard Boynton Creyke. Richard never stepped foot on the BC coast, but his legacy lives on.
Creyke Point lookout towards Juan de Fuca Strait
The gem of East Sooke Park is the Coast Trail. This full day thru-hike is a favorite among locals as it immerses you in the rugged wilderness of the west coast with minimal drive time from Victoria. Enjoy rich wildlife, ragged rock shoreline, and fresh ocean breeze along the trail. This challenging hike is for moderate ability hikers with sections of scrambling and single lane paths – be prepared for a full 8 hours of hiking.
Time: 8.5 hours (with breaks)
Difficulty: Moderate/Moderately Strenuous
The Coast Trail is a thru-hike with trailhead access points at Aylard Farm and Pike Road – this requires some extra planning for transportation between the trailheads.
We recommend taking two vehicles and parking one at the Pike Road Trailhead (for the end of the hike) then driving to Aylard Farm and starting from Creyke Point. Be sure to load your maps before hand as cell service is spotty in the park.
If you are a solo-hiker it is possible to hire a local Sooke cab company to shuttle you from the Pike Road Trailhead to Aylard Farm.
- To get to the Pike Road Trailhead take Highway #14 from Victoria 30km to the 17 Mile House Pub. Just after the Pub take a hard left onto Gillespie Road and continue for 6km till you reach a three way stop. At the three way stop, turn right onto East Sooke Road and continue for 8km till you reach Pike Road on the left.
- To get to the Aylard Farm parking lot from the Pike Road parking lot head back down Pike Road, turn right onto East Sooke Road and continue until you reach the three way stop. Continue straight through along East Sooke road for 2km then take a right onto Beecher Bay Road. At the end of Beecher Bay Road is the Aylard Farm parking lot.
We recommend this west bound hiking route as East Sooke Park is a popular spot for picnickers, beach goers, and families. The first section of the trail from Aylard Farm to the Petroglyphs can get very congested. There is nothing worse than waiting to pass hordes of people on the trail!
Local Tip: The second entrance on the west end of the Coast Trail via Silver Spray Drive has been blocked by new development and closed until further notice (June 2022).
What is left of the Silver Spray Trail Entrance (June 24, 2022)
Hiking Conditions / Trip Report
The Coast Trail is accessible year round but is most enjoyable from spring to fall. We set out on a warm sunny Friday in late June at 7:00am from Victoria, dropped one car off at the Pike Road Trail Head and started at 8:15am from the Aylard Farm Parking lot.
The temperature was 12 degrees C when we started and climbed up to a balmy 22 degrees C by 1:00pm. The trail was dry and the light breeze off the water was refreshing. Although the trail is marked, it is surprisingly easy to veer off the path while watching your footing – be sure the pay attention!
Yellow Trail Marker along the Coast Trail
We opted for leggings to start out but changed into shorts 2 hours in at Beechey Head. We lucked out with low tides and walked along the beach just south of Creyke Point for the first 400m of the trail. You can check the tides for Sooke before your hike here!
Beach along the Coast Trail just south of Creyke Point
We took a series of small breaks for snacks and water while taking in the striking views, and stopped for a 30 minute lunch at the Trap Shack midway. Up until the Trap Shack we only passed 1 other hiker on the trail. Almost all the vehicles in the parking lot were from the multiple fishermen jigging for rock fish on the craggy rocks below the trail.
View overlooking the small bay at the Trap Shack
The second half of the hike was more strenuous with lots of ups and downs and intermitted scrambling. There is a good lookout point west of Parkheights Trail where we stopped for a quick break to enjoy the views.
We exited the trailhead at the Pike Road parking lot at 5:35pm for a total hike time of 8 hours and 20 minutes.
Trailhead at Pike Road
Creyke Point to Alldridge Point
We started with a loop around Creyke Point before heading west on the Coast Trail. The loop took about 15 minutes (with beautiful views and lots of stopping for photos).
One of the lookouts along the Creyke Point Trail
From the start of the Coast Trail it took about 35 minutes to reach Alldridge Point (petroglyphs). This is the easiest part of the trail with the least amount of scrambling.
CRD Sign at Alldridge Point outlining what to look for
The image carved into the sandstone is rumored to be an elephant seal and estimated to be 200-4,000 years old. Unfortunately the design is slowly being washed away by wind and waves splashing against the rocks.
Petroglyph of elephant seal carved into sandstone
Alldridge Point to Beechey Head
From the Petroglyphs to Beechey Head it took us 40 minutes – with a lot of ups and downs and some scrambling. Way points are marked with trail signs.
One of the many trail markers along the Coast Trail
Scrambling up the Coast Trail towards Beechey Head
The Beechey Head Sign is hard to see from the trail and slightly hidden by brush
We stopped for a 20 minute break to relish the view and for a quick snack at the Beechey Head lookout. The treaty marker (dated 1908) marks the 10th turning point in the Canada US border, where the border jogs slightly below the 49th parallel.
Border Marker at Beechey Head
Beechey Head to Cabin Point
The terrain was varying on route to Cabin Point. It took us 1 hour to get from Beechey Head to the Trap Shack.
Grassy ledge along the Coast Trail between Beechey Head and the Cabin Point
This small cove is another good spot to stop for lunch just 10 minutes east of Cabin Point
Cabin Point to Iron Mine Bay
Cabin Point was the perfect spot to stop for a 30 minute lunch before continuing west. We had the place to ourselves with a nice bench overlooking the water.
The remaining Trap Shack on the point was built some time in the early 1900s and housed fishermen employed to empty the fish traps. Fishing was good back in 1918 with an average of 70,000 pounds of salmon pulled from the water every year (roughly 3,500 salmon).
The remains of the Trap Shack (slightly refurbished) and open for anyone who wants to take a look inside
Looking back east down the Coast Trail at one of the many lookout points
Don’t forget to stop and check out the wildlife and wild flowers of the Pacific Northwest along the trail!
Tree Oyster Mushrooms
Unknown Red Flowers along the edge of trail
Flowering Salal bush
Broad-Leaved Stonecrop succulent
What to Bring Day Hiking
We’ve included a list of essential items and pack list from our day hike in East Sooke Park. Be sure to check the weather before you take off!
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Some of the items we brought on our day hike on the Coast Trail
Most important item for hiking is shoes. If your feet are uncomfortable when hiking the experience will be terrible! The Coast Trail can be done in runners but we opted for hiking boots for a little more ankle support (especially after the 5hr mark!!). If you are buying brand new hiking boots, please break them in before you set out for 8 hrs straight. Here is a list of our favorite hiking boots.
Mountain Warehouse Adventurer Womens (Budget Option)
NORTIV 8 Mens Hiking Boot (Budget Option)
Quality wool socks also make a huge difference.
A good day pack is also essential, we recommend a 15-40L sized backpack for day hikes. The Marmot day pack we use has been discontinued but here is a similar one. Some other good options are below.
Water is obviously important. We have the HydraPak 2L Bladder and it has lasted for 5 years with no issues averaging 6 hikes per year (including with some multi-day hikes). We recommend getting a larger water bladder (3L) as the bladder itself is lightweight – for shorter hikes you can just fill it up with less water. Link for the HydraPak 3L is below – with some other good water bladder options!
We usually bring a few Aquatabs with us just in case we run low on water.
HydraPak Shape-Shift Low Profile 3L
TANNOZHE Hydration Bladder (Budget Option)
When hiking it is best to layer up so you are prepared for all types of weather. The forecast can vary and change quickly especially in the Pacific Northwest!
The North Face Womens TKA Fleece
The North Face Mens TKA Fleece
Burton Womens Gore-Tex Packrite Jacket
Marmot Mens Minimalist Gore-Tex Rain Jacket
Some non-essential extras we like to bring on our hikes include the octopus tripod for cellphone pictures and a DSLR camera to capture the moment.