Goldstream is a gorgeous provincial park that is home to numerous trails, waterfalls, huge 600-year-old Douglas Fir trees and of course the Goldstream trestle!
We walked through miles of beautiful forest before hiking up to the disused railway line and following it towards the trestle. Check out these amazing autumn colours!
Unlike the Kinsol trestle, the bridge at Goldstream hasn’t had any construction or renovation since it was used as part of the active railway line. This definitely gives you a more authentic experience, although looking through the gaps is not for the weak-hearted since it towers 85 metres above the river that flows underneath. My Dad isn’t that keen on heights and sent me a stern email to stay away from the edge, but it really was an amazing viewpoint!
I’ve also heard that the trestle is a popular spot for throwing pumpkins off at this time of year. Here’s my first pumpkin carving attempt!
We also managed to find the Hidden Springs and visited the Goldstream Falls and Niagara Falls – with a 47 metre drop, it’s almost as tall as its famous namesake. Pretty impressive.
The park is also home to an annual chum salmon spawning run, which was definitely a highlight for me (and another thing ticked off the Canadian bucket list!). The salmon migrate from the ocean and laboriously make their way upstream to spawn, usually returning with uncanny precision to the river they were born in. Late October-November is the best time to see this pretty incredible natural phenomenon, and it draws a lot of interest from both humans and predators – we spotted three otters!
The site draws thousands of salmon each year, although a friend of mine is writing a research paper on the declining salmon population. The fishing industry here is worth $400 million each year, but due to reasons like over-fishing, the salmon population has been drastically reduced in the last sixty years. This impacts the entire food chain, from predators like bears and bald eagles, to anchovies and sea lice. Salmon breeding programmes may make people feel better about the impact, but have been shown to be largely ineffective. Get some more info here: https://www.watershed-watch.org/
The Goldstream Park is only 20km outside of Victoria, and you can get there in around an hour and a half by taking three buses (or two buses and then hitchhike if your bus driver is having a bad day), so it’s a wonderful day trip.