The Trans Canada Trail is a visionary idea of the government of British Columbia to create a network of trails crossing all of Canada. It will be the longest trail of it’s kind in the world, spanning approximately 17,250 kilometers. The shared-use recreation of the trails will include walking, cycling, horseback riding, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling (where possible/desired).
The Trail’s two routes on former railway lines out of Lake Cowichan both follow the Cowichan River into the Duncan Area. One goes north of the Cowichan River to the Duncan Area and then north to Nanaimo. The other goes south of the Cowichan River to the Duncan Area, then goes west of the Malahat Range to Sooke and then onto Victoria, BC. The later intersects with some of the provincial parks on the Cowichan River and the historical Cowichan River Footpath.
Both routes use abandoned railway lines (CNR and E & N) whose tracks have been taken up and trestles have been made into bridges. Trail conditions vary from hiking gravel to loose shale and everywhere inbetween. The trail in Lake Cowichan is well maintained and safe. Yellow hiker icons have been painted on the sidewalks to guide people through town between the two former railway lines.
Go to the Trans Canada Trail Homepage for more information about this project. More information about trip planning on this section of the trail is also available on the BC Trans Canada Trail Homepage.