A Cross Country Lovers Dream
In general, Victoria mountain biking trails are more geared to cross-country bikers than downhill riders. Harbourview, a trail system located just east of Sooke, is a great example of this.
A burgeoning destination, Harbourview already appeals to bikers with a varied network of trails. To access the goods, however, you’ll have to climb up a long fire road, and if you wish to get to the top of Manuel Quimper, you might have to do your share of hike a bike, so be prepared for strenuous effort. As you catch up your breath, you can admire scenic views of the Juan de Fuca Strait from the top of Zigzag and FM Radio.
The trails were built with intermediate and advanced bikers in mind. Some natural features and opportunities for jumps and stunts add spice to the descents, and the incline allows for fast riding. However don’t expect this to be a fast downhill ride. The trails here are very technical and there is very little sustained downhill flow sections.
In winter, as the rain gets more abundant, be aware that some sections of the road that accesses Terra Nova might be flooded. It is wise to look for updated information if you choose to explore this area in the winter time, especially after heavy rainfall.
On the bright side, parking is rarely an issue at Harbourview, and the main lot provides amenities such as washrooms and a bike washing station with repair tools. If you are visiting the area from Victoria and are looking for something to do while the weekend traffic in Langford settles, you will find several interesting dining options in the nearby town of Sooke.