A different take on the Top 5 this week.
Ryan LeBlanc of The Natural Connection offers up the best Sooke Region’s waterfalls to visit on a fall day.
“It’s never a bad time of year for a hike around Sooke, but with fewer hours of daylight it’s important to get some regular time outside to avoid those winter blues, and chasing waterfalls is a great excuse to get out,” says LeBlanc.
Sitting Lady Falls – Witty’s Lagoon Park – From the parking lot on Metchosin Road, walk the trail past the nature house and turn left at the fork just before the creek. You’re right over the waterfall at this point, but walk the trail to the other side of the creek for a better view. This trail continues along the edge of the estuary which attracts many migratory birds.
Sandcut Creek – Sandcut Beach – The short downhill hike to the beach is only 10 minutes, and well worth the stop just to break up the drive on West Coast Road. Turn left when the trail gets to the beach and walk another 10 to 15 minutes down the beach to reach the waterfall. This spot is unique because it looks different after every storm, the waves toss the rocks about and the creek flow moves them. You can walk behind the waterfall if you don’t mind getting a little wet.
Mary Vine Falls – Sooke Potholes – The 20-minute hike from Parking Lot No. 2 is challenging in some places, but well worth the effort. A heavy mist hangs in the air around this tall and wide waterfall, with space to view from the base of the falls. Continue on this trail to Peden Lake and the Sooke Hills.
Mystic Beach – Juan de Fuca Park – This waterfall is fed mostly by the groundwater leaking from the edge of a sheer cliff on the edge of the ocean. Best viewed after a few days of heavy rain, at low tide. High tide and winter storms make viewing the falls from up close unsafe.
Sombrio Beach – Juan de Fuca Park – Hike the trail from the parking lot to the beach, turn left and walk almost all the way to the end of the beach. You’ll see a pretty unassuming stream crossing the beach, follow it into the forest through a thin sandstone canyon to a thin, but powerful 15-metre-tall waterfall. Resist the urge to carve your name in the walls.
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