Victoria views among best things in city

Several mountains to climb in Capital Region

Natalie Kingwell sits on the top of Mount Doug enjoying a spectacular vista. Easy access to breathtaking views is one of the many things residents love about living in Greater Victoria.

The tougher the uphill climb, the bigger the reward for Natalie Kingwell.

The Saanich resident is a regular long-distance runner and avid hiker on some of Greater Victoria’s more rugged and scenic landscapes, such as Mount Finlayson in Goldstream Provincial Park.

“If I’m going on a hike I want it to be hard and challenging,” she says of tackling the 419-metre summit.

“When I get to the top I want it to be ‘yes.’”

That says something coming from someone who is afraid of heights and never regularly jogged until two years ago.

She had already been running shorter distances when friends took her up Mount Finlayson.

“It’s amazing,” Kingwell says of the view. “It’s so beautiful. You see all of Victoria and the ocean and the mountains.”

She is now a regular fixture there, and chooses the steeper trails to get to one of the highest peaks in Greater Victoria, which offers unobstructed views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic mountain range.

Other breathtaking views in the Capital Region can be admired from lookouts atop Mount Douglas and Mount Tolmie in Saanich and from sea level at Colwood’s Esquimalt Lagoon.

Gowlland Tod Provincial Park offers magnificent views of Finlayson Arm and the Saanich Inlet.

Breathtaking scenery can also be soaked up from the Malahat Drive observation points, Clover Point in Victoria, Witty’s Lagoon regional park in Metchosin and Little Saanich Mountain, home to the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory.

Esquimalt also boasts Highrock Park, the township’s highest point of land.

A year ago Kingwell joined a running group that regularly tackles steeper inclines in Greater Victoria to improve strength and stamina.

“Victoria is the perfect place for people (who like to) exercise outside,” she says. “The weather here is great, even when it’s raining. It’s never cold enough to bother anybody.”

The Galloping Goose regional trail has served her as an important gateway to scenic beauty, as has the Westsong Walkway, stretching along the waterfront between Victoria and Esquimalt.

Elk and Beaver lakes also provide Kingwell with a lovely view as she runs along the 10-kilometre looped path.

“I like running where it looks pretty,” she says.

“You forget this is where we live. It’s so beautiful.”

emccracken@vicnews.com

BEST OF THE CITY

Find out what News readers have selected as their favourites,

from eateries to entertainment, in the 2011 Black Press

Best Of the City guide, available via home delivery

to selected areas with our June 22 issue.

Just Posted

Electrical appliance failure likely caused apartment fire that killed one Saanich resident

Large parts of the Richmond Road apartment building remain uninhabitable following June 21 fire

Garden suite applications on the rise, but not without a few hitches: staff report

Victoria city council to hear update on revised garden suite application process

UPDATED: Wanted man facing sex-related charges arrested by Sidney North Saanich RCMP

West Shore RCMP asked for the public’s help locating Richard Tom, 32, earlier this month

Vaping a growing problem in Sooke School District

Island’s chief medical officer raises the alarm

Armoury event highlights Canada’s D-Day efforts in Normandy

Event runs Saturday 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Bay Street Armoury

PHOTO: Image of drowned father, daughter at U.S. border underlines migrants’ perils

Journalist Julia Le Duc took searing photo of Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez and daughter Valeria

POLL: Do you think the penalty should be increased for tossing a burning cigarette from a vehicle?

With grasslands and forests around Vancouver Island and across B.C. reaching tinder… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of June 25

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Rock slide in B.C. river may hinder salmon passage

DFO says it is aware that the slide occurred in a narrow portion of the Fraser River

Four-hour tarmac delay violates charter rights of Canadians with a disability: lawsuit

Bob Brown says new rules reduce the distance he can travel by air without putting his health at risk

PHOTOS: North Island home gutted in fire deemed ‘suspicious’

No injuries reported; firefighters prevented blaze from spreading

Child killed after being hit in driveway on Vancouver Island

The driver of the vehicle remained at the crash scene and is fully cooperating

Eating sandwiches, putting on makeup behind the wheel could land you a fine

RCMP say if you cause an accident while eating you could be penalized

Cat badly hurt in animal trap was likely stuck for days, B.C. owner says

Blu, a three-year-old house cat, suffered severe damage to his hind leg after being stuck in trap for days

Most Read