Galloping Goose Regional Trail – Victoria

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The Galloping Goose Regional Trail – Victoria is in the seaside city of Victoria, one of thirteen communities that form the Capital Regional District of British Columbia. A branch off the Galloping Goose is the Lochside Regional Trail leads into Victoria, BC, from the Swartz Bay Ferry Terminal.  The Lochside Regional Trail, maintained by the Capital Region District, is a walking, biking, skating and riding trail that parallels the roads of North Saanich, Sidney, Central Saanich, Saanich and Victoria. Starting from the Swartz Bay BC Ferry Terminal, it is about thirty-three kilometers to Victoria. This journey takes an average cyclist about 2 hours to reach Swartz Bay from Victoria. At the junction with Douglas Street, the Lochside Trail changes its name to the Galloping Goose Trail which continues through Saanich, Esquimalt, View Royal, Colwood, Langford, Metchosin and onto Sooke. The entire route is over fifty-five kilometers one way and provides an excellent way to see these communities.

Trail guides can be found here:

https://www.gallopinggoosetrail.com/pdf/lochside_trail_guide.pdf

https://www.gallopinggoosetrail.com/pdf/galloping_goose_lochside_brochure.pdf

This three kilometer section of the Galloping Goose Regional Trail leads into downtown Victoria. The initial couple of hundred meters is refreshing as the trail parallels Cecelia Creek, a small creek with a watershed drainage of about three hundred and sixty hectares from mostly impermeable grounds. Fortunately this creek is seeing the light of day literally and aquatic life is returning to its waters. The trail passes under the Burnside Road East bridge with a mural designed by Frank Lewis, and enters into Cecelia Ravine Park. On the western ridge of the ravine is a playground and on the eastern side is a community center and strolling garden, a Garry oak meadow and a bike park as well as a paved and marked basketball and hockey court. There are several areas to stop for breaks and to enjoy the outdoor art works along the pathway. Another excellent art mural is under the Gorge Road East Bridge. Come out to see “Bridging” designed by Frank Lewis. Near here a discrete bridge crosses over the Cecelia Creek as it flows into the Gorge Waterway. The Galloping Goose Trail continues through Viaduct Park which borders on the estuary for Cecelia Creek. There are several shops and stores at the Selkirk Waterfront area which is to the east. Continuing along, the GGT connects to the trestle bridge across the Gorge Waterway. This weather fir and cedar bridge has a long gentle slope. See if you can stop the hinge section of the bridge. Its length is over three hundred meters and although this section of the trail can be busy, as many people use this trail as a commuter route, the bridge is wide enough.

The GGT continues along the western shoreline of the Selkirk Waterway past Halkett Island with several great spots to stop. The signs in a small green space at the southern end of the trestle is the Trans Canada Parkette and a junction point for the trail. Its name at some point becomes synonymous with the Harbour Road Bicycle Trail which continues south. Continue under Point Ellice Bridge and along to the inner harbour of Victoria to the Johnson Street Bridge, which is the zero kilometer of the trail.

Geographic coordinate N48° 26’ 28” W123° 22’ 24” at Alpha and Beta streets

Galloping Goose Regional Trail can be reached from Blanchard Street. Turn west onto Finlayson Street and continue to Burnside Road East. Turn right onto Burnside Road East and then left three streets along onto Alpha Street. A trail access is slightly north of the intersection of Alpha and Beta streets. Alternatively park near Cecelia Ravine Park’s bike park which just across Burnside Road East and take one of these pathways down to the trail. There is limited roadside parking along these roads. A city bus travels along Burnside Road East from downtown.

 

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