Cape Scott Provincial Park

Strathcona District PO Box 1479
Port Hardy , BC V9P 2H4
(250) 954-4600


Cape Scott—22,131 hectares of heaven. That must have been what the Danish Pioneers thought of this incredible area of Vancouver Island in 1894. A Danish fisherman, Rasmus Hansen aboard the schooner, The Floyborg, was the first of many to have the dream; a wonderful place for a settlement.

A colony was established in 1897. By 1907, after struggling to survive by fishing, trapping and self-sufficient farming, the Danish settlers finally acknowledged failure and one by one they pulled up stakes. The storms were too violent, the settlement too remote, and the rainfall, close to 500 cm per year, too heavy.

Though others with similar dreams have since come and gone on this spectacular wilderness stretch of West Coast, the Province of British Columbia established Cape Scott as a park in 1973. Named after a lighthouse in the area, Cape Scott Provincial Park is characterized by over 100 km of oceanfront, which include hidden coves, sandy beaches, and fresh water streams. Numerous hiking trails are networked throughout the area, leading to various spots such as; Eric Lake (3 km from trail head); Fisherman River (9.3 km); Hansen Lagoon (14.7 km); Nissen Bight (15.0 km); Cape Scott (23.6 km, or eight hours); and others.

Sections of the trails are extremely muddy and can be difficult to navigate. Hikers are encouraged to bring all-weather gear, appropriate footwear, food, maps, and first aid supplies. Visitors are also asked to keep to the organized paths to prevent destruction of plant life and soil structure.

Is it worth it—the mud, the moisture, the hours of hiking? When you stand a the mouth of the trail and see before you a smorgasbord view of waves crashing on jagged shorelines, sea gulls crying, eagles screeching, trees permanently bent from the constant wind; when you feel the solitude, knowing you are among the few people on earth who have seen what you have before you, then you will have the answer.

The park is open year-round. There are two small campgrounds located outside the park to the south, less than a km from the trailhead parking area. They include trailer and tent sites. Overnight backcountry fees are collected from June to September. Access depends on weather and snow load. Contact the BC Provincial Park Office to confirm accessibility.
Written By: Cindy Faryon
On: 8/28/2001


Prior to reaching Port Hardy on Hwy 19,watch for signs for Holberg and Cape Scott Prov. Park. Turn left on Holberg Road, heading west. Just past Holberg Inlet,turn right on San Josef Main road (active logging gravel road) and follow this road to the trailhead parking lot which is approx. 64 kms west of Port Hardy.


Swimming Areas | Walking Trails


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