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    Matheson Lake Loop

    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.
    4.0 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.
    86 m
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    Directions to Trailhead

    The Matheson Lake Loop is a 4.0 km hiking circuit west of Victoria, BC, that will take you through an amazingly scenic forest setting for some beautiful views across the lake. Made up of well-maintained pathways and varied terrain, this is a family-friendly trail that is perfect for a fun day of exploring the outdoors. Make sure to arrive early, as parking can be limited at the trailhead during peak times.

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    Route Description for Matheson Lake Loop

    While the Matheson Lake Loop is a fun family-friendly adventure through the woods, the trail isn’t fully suited for all types of adventurers. There is a lot of variation along this route, with undulating terrain, rocky and root-covered trails, marshy areas with boardwalks, and a few steep sections. As such, this route might not be the best for very young children, families with strollers, or less-mobile hikers. Additionally, this trail can be extremely busy during peak hours, on weekends, and during the summer time. Make sure to arrive early to secure parking at the trailhead and enjoy some peace and quiet while out on the trail.

    The amazing scenery and nice variations in terrain are really what makes the Matheson Lake Loop such a great hiking route. The trail meanders through the forest landscape that surrounds the lake and passes through some beautiful stretches of marsh in the northeastern part of the loop, and some rockier trails towards the southwest. With plenty of small ups and downs along the trail, there will be plenty of changes to keep the hike interesting without tiring you out. Make sure to bring the whole family along for this hike to enjoy a fun day out in the beautiful landscape of Matheson Lake Regional Park.

    Setting out from the parking area, follow the trail to the north as it enters into the dense cover of the forest and skirts along the eastern edge of the lake. On your left, you will have some intermittent views across the calm waters of the lake and the isolated shores of Gillespie Island that can be found within it. Continue along the trail as it crosses over Wildwood Creek and begins to turn towards the west through a stretch of marshy terrain.

    As you hike along the wooden boardwalk, take some time to relax in the tranquil atmosphere that the forest has to offer and pass straight through any junctions in the trail that you might come across. After roughly 1.3km of hiking, the trail will come to a T-intersection with the Galloping Goose Regional Trail. Follow this to the left for 280m before turning left again to get back on the Matheson Lake Trail’s southern portion.

    Make your way around the western shore of the lake and past a small clearing, where you will find a junction next to Matheson Creek. Take the left trail to crossover the creek and enter back under the thick canopy of the forest along a much rockier stretch of trail. Carefully traverse this technical part of the hike that will come to an end roughly 550m after the creek crossing.

    As you make your way along the heavily-wooded southern shore of Matheson Lake, take in the views across the water that might include some raucous swimmers if you are completing the hike in the middle of the summer. Continue heading east through the forest, where you will eventually cross over another small creek. From here, it is a short 500 m trek back to the Matheson Lake parking area where you began your hike.

    Insider Hints for Matheson Lake Loop

    • Arrive early to secure parking and beat the crowds.
    • Wear proper hiking footwear, as sections of the trail are covered in roots and rocks.
    • Try coming in the summer when the lake is perfect for a refreshing swim.

    Getting to the Matheson Lake Loop Trailhead

    To reach the trailhead for the Matheson Lake Loop from Metchosin, drive southwest on Rocky Point Road for 5.0 km and turn right onto Matheson Lake Park Road. After 1.4 km, you will arrive at the parking area.

    Route Information

    • When to do


    • Backcountry Campsites


    • Pets allowed

      Yes - On Leash

    • Family friendly


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    Matheson Lake Loop Elevation Graph

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