Hike and swim between ancient rock formations as you trace the path of the Sooke River, taking in awe-inspiring views along the way.
Visit Sooke Potholes Provincial Park to experience a glimpse of a prehistoric landscape. Go for a hike in this well-known beauty spot and discover its impressive geological formations, which are unique to the Sooke River area. The park is an ideal daytrip destination, but travelers who want to stay longer can take advantage of the on-site camping facilities.
The deep potholes that give the park its name date back to the last ice age. These distinctive features of the land create the perfect environment for hiking and fresh water swimming. Capitalize on this stunning natural backdrop to take some memorable photographs.
Aside from the potholes, the rest of the park’s terrain is also beautiful and varied. Expect a typical hike here to take you through Douglas fir forests, marshland and along the banks of a lake.
Many visitors come to the park just to do some casual walking and enjoy a picnic, but if you’re a bit more serious about hiking, consider the Galloping Goose Regional Trail. This 34-mile (55-kilometer) scenic trail can be joined from the park. The route follows a former railway line and is popular with both hikers and bikers looking for longer outdoor adventures.
Stay alert to wildlife as you explore the park. You never know when you could catch a glimpse of an elk or a bald eagle. Black bears also wander the area, though you’re unlikely to run into one of those.
One of the most powerful natural spectacles to be seen at the park is the salmon spawning run. Visit in fall and you may see hordes of salmon leap along the Sooke River to reach their breeding ground.
Sooke Potholes Provincial Park is not far from central Sooke. Reach it by car in around 15 minutes by following the prominent signposts. If you plan to swim, the best time to go is in summer, when the water is likely to be warm enough. Afterward, let the sun dry you. Relax on the banks of the River Sooke with a picnic and admire the weird and wonderful shapes made by the potholes.