• Dan Belgue

Bicycle Touring: Sooke Hills to Mill Bay

Updated: Mar 7

A late October overnight loop to Bamberton Provincial Park, first heading north through the Sooke Hills to Shawnigan Lake, then southeast to Mill Bay. Crisp morning air exhaled into a warm and bright fall day. The ride through the Sooke Hills Wilderness Trail proved to be a particularly challenging section of this route, featuring some gnarly climbs and wild descents, flying through the tall trees, windswept, weaving through the woods, breathing in the glory of the fall forest. The grades were often too steep to pedal with my loaded bike, my back tire spinning helplessly in the gravel, resulting in pretty gruelling bike-pushing scenarios. I had some moments of doubt on the isolated trail, but pushed through and made it to camp just before dark. I was thankful for a hot meal by candle lantern and a warm sleeping bag. After a cold night and frosty morning ride down to the Mill Bay ferry, I hopped on board to Brentwood Bay and had a mellow ride back to town, basking in the morning sunshine. This route was just over 100 kilometres, and although more challenging than I expected in some sections, I’m pretty stoked on how it came together. So many adventures right outside the front door.