What was once a historic logging area on Vancouver Island now has multiple personalities, and it’s a perfect spot if you’re planning a family vacation with mountain bike-riding teenagers. The Snowden Demonstration Forest, just outside the town of Campbell River, continues to be a working forest, managed by BC Timber Sales. It is home to numerous research installations that integrate silviculture systems with environmental concerns. It offers outdoor enthusiasts recreation, interpretive trails and campgrounds. And it’s become a mountain biker’s idea of heaven.
Nirvana for Mountain Bikers
The Snowden Demonstration Forest is well-known among serious dirt bike riders for its extensive dirt bike trails, some with steep inclines. On its website, the Comox Valley Mountain Trail Bike explains, “This is an (cross country) area with over 100km (63 miles) of trails, but not well suited to the absolute beginner rider, as most trails are quite difficult and continuously technical. Trails vary from dense forest to open rock bluff, unique to this area is the almost total absence of roads giving riders a feeling of ‘being out there.’”
Hiking Trails, Too
The Forest has plenty of hiking trails, ranging from easy to challenging. As you enter the Forest, visit the Visitor Info Centre for a brochure produced by the Ministry of Forests, which is in charge of maintaining the trails. If you’re planning to spend your holidays in Vancouver Island, the Snowden Demonstration Forest has a lot to offer.
Links for More Information
You’ll find a Snowden Demonstration Forest Map and brochure from the conservation organization Greenways Land Trust here. Read more about the Comox Valley Mountain Trail Bike group here.
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