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    Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail

    This reflects the 10Adventures difficulty rating for each route. We aim to keep ratings consistent across regions.
    This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
    This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
    4.2 km
    This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
    153 m
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    Directions to Trailhead
    Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail

    The Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail is a slightly overgrown but fun hiking route that will take you from Bear Cove to a memorial site for a 1944 RCAF plane crash. Along the trail, hikers will experience a variety of terrain types that include gravel pathways and muddy trails with fixed rope sections to help you traverse the unmaintained upper portion of the route. This trail is a bit rugged but not overly difficult, making it suitable for casual hikers or those with an interest in visiting historical sites.

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    Route Description for Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail

    Hiking the Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail is a fantastic outdoor experience that will introduce you to the natural beauty of north Vancouver Island and provide you with a bit of history in the process. The trail climbs uphill through the forest to the site of a fatal 1944 plane crash that occurred when a RCAF Dakota 576 was running a navigation exercise and ran out of fuel. Two of the plane’s crew died in the accident and one survived, with the monument along the trail standing as a memorial to their passing. Although it reminds visitors of a tragic event, this hike is a great adventure that can be enjoyed by both experienced and casual hikers alike.

    Due to the rough and rugged nature of the trail and the volumes of mud that can usually be found along it, it is recommended that hikers wear proper hiking footwear to both stay comfortable on the trail and get the best traction. Setting out from the parking area, walk north along the road for roughly 100 m and turn right onto the paved road. Follow the road uphill to the point where the road turns right and the trail to the left. Follow the gravel path to the left and continue climbing uphill for nice views overlooking Hardy Bay. When you reach the top of the trail, take some time to view the wreckage of the Dakota 576 crash site and explore the area, before heading back along the same route to return to the trailhead.

    Getting to the Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail Trailhead

    To reach the parking area for the Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail from Port Hardy, head south on BC-19 for 4.2 km and turn left to stay on the highway, following the signs for the fairies. After 4.4 km, turn left to enter the parking area.

    Route Information

    • When to do


    • Backcountry Campsites


    • Pets allowed


    • Family friendly

      Older Children only

    • Route Signage


    • Crowd Levels


    • Route Type

      Out and back

    Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail Elevation Graph

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    Dakota 576 Crash Site Trail Reviews

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