Hiking Century Sam Lake, Strathcona Park ~ Turquoise Blue Waters and an Ice Cave ~ Strathcona Park Elopement Photographer

Century Sam Lake Hike | Vancouver Island Hiking | Strathcona Park Elopement Photographer

Hiking Century Sam Lake, Strathcona Park

The turquoise blue waters of Century Sam Lake in Strathcona Park lure the hikers and the wanderlusters to its mesmerizing sights. Hiking to this beautiful place has become quite popular due a “social media wildfire,” and its relatively easy access. By easy I mean that it doesn’t require multiple days to get to, however you definitely don’t just park your car beside the lake. Hiking around five km’s to get there with 500 meters of elevation gain will get your booty flexing and your legs feeling the feels. Depending on your fitness level, expect anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hours to hike this. Travel on logging road and access through privately owned gates makes getting to the trail head difficult, especially since the gate is only open sometimes. It is absolutely worth it to get here though- photos can’t do this experience justice! This would make for a pretty amazing elopement location, just saying ;)

Century Sam Lake Hike | Vancouver Island Hiking | Strathcona Park Elopement Photographer

Turquoise Blue Lake and an Ice Cave!

As well as the turquoise blue lake, there is a really cool ice cave you can check out too if the snow has melted enough. The snow pack is sheltered in the shadow of steep cliffs from the Comox Valley Glacier, and sometimes stay all year round as a solid ice pack. If you’re lucky, you can hit this place just right. If the snow pack has melted sufficiently, you can actually walk inside of the snow cave! (Please do this at your own discretion, it could obviously be dangerous.) When we visited in late September 2017, the cave was accessible and we could see the layers of ice from within. I’d recommend bringing strong flashlights, headlamps and spare batteries to see the ice designs well. Oh, and also wear a rain jacket as you will for sure get dripped on by the melt!

Chicken of the Woods

Chicken of the Woods? What the heck is that? I had no idea. While hiking, we came across a soaking wet man with a basket full of mushrooms and a smile so happy you couldn’t help but also feel excited. He was feeling so stoked on life, laying there in the dirt surrounded by big orange mushrooms, and he explained why. Chicken of the Woods is an edible mushroom that was abundant in this area at this time. His baskets were full. He went on to tell us that he was definitely going to be late for work and he had a flat tire to deal with when he got back down. Despite these stresses, he was the happiest person I met that week! Way to go man, keep on keeping on.

Directions and Further Info

For driving directions and a detailed trip analysis, check out; https://www.theoutbound.com/canada/hiking/hike-to-century-sam-lake# 

To check gate and logging road accessibility, see; https://www.mosaicforests.com/access