Hiking, Vancouver Island

Day 19: Parksville Wetlands & Surrounding Trails

Trails: Parksville Wetlands, Maple Glen Walkway (The Walkway of ♥) and Surrounding Forested Trails
Wetlands Address: 790 Hirst Avenue West, Parksville
Access Points: The foot of Despard Avenue or The Maple Glen Linear Walkway at the southern intersection of Magnolia Drive and Chestnut Street
Distance Walked:  7.86 km
Walking Time:  1 hr, 45 min
Trail Rating: Easy

Source: City of Parksville

Parksville Wetlands (formerly Ermineskin Parkland) is part of Springwood Park. It is a 1.14-kilometre loop that connects to Maple Glen Walkway, the Coombs Rail Trail and Cold Water Trails. The Wetlands path is mostly level, hardpacked and wheelchair accessible. Surrounding trails include smooth walkways and well-groomed forested paths. Benches are strategically placed for rest stops.

The City of Parksville purchased this 35.9 hectares from the Ermineskin Cree Nation in September 2017. The wetlands and adjacent woods form an essential habitat for migratory birds, unique marsh birds and amphibians. It is also a valuable watershed resource and a rare ecosystem.

This area is a hidden gem and an excellent birding site. Interconnecting paths allow for a short, accessible stroll or a longer forested hike. It envelopes you in wildflowers and provides surround-sound music of songbirds. Don’t forget your binoculars!

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28 thoughts on “Day 19: Parksville Wetlands & Surrounding Trails”

  1. Beautiful hike. I never thought I’d say this, but I get so excited when I hear/see beautiful birds… and flowers on trails. and just the feel of the path beneath my feet helps me relax.


    1. Thanks, Laurie – Today’s walk was so tranquil and soul-refreshing. Later this afternoon, I met a friend who has lived less than a 30-minute walk from the Wetlands for the past five years. She asked me where the Wetlands were, as she had never heard about this trail before. It’s a true hidden gem.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Donna – it sounds a wonderful area to ‘pop’ along to for a gentle walk around. I’d got quite interested in the plants and herbs before I left – but left my guides and books behind … I’d love to visit … looks just beautiful. stay safe – Hilary


  3. What beautiful flowers, Donna. I can almost hear the birds singing. Thank you for taking us along on your 30 hikes in 30 days. Happy trails!


  4. Good to know about anything toxic, Donna. I am still not 100% certain what poison ivy looks like, too. It is always amazing how lush and diverse the wetlands are. We don’t always bring binoculars. A good point. Lovely hike.xx


    1. Hi, Erica – The plant philosophy that I go by is, “Leaves of three, let them be!” While there are other plants which have leaf clusters in threes, both poison ivy and poison oak share this trait, making them something that I try to avoid.
      We keep a small pair of binoculars in our ‘always stocked’ hiking pack. That makes one less thing for us to forget in the morning. Thanks for following along!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Donna,
    The spring flowers in Tennessee always leave us too early, but, here in Montana, we’re enjoying some of the same beauty you are sharing in your pictures. You’ve only got eleven more hikes to go and we’re loving every one. Joe


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