Christopher Rock is located just north of Youbou and provides magnificent views of the northern arms of Cowichan Lake stretching before you east and westwards. Looking south you see Bald Mountain and the arm towards Gordon Bay and Honeymoon Bay.
The terrain is steep and rugged and suitable for hikers only. The trails lead up to the viewpoint on Christopher Rock, and energetic hikers can continue up to Eric’s Bluff. The trail is an in and out, up and down hike. We are hoping to expand it to a loop in the future.
You can find the trail head and parking lot right behind the Youbou school and bowling alley at the end of Hemlock Street.
Beyond the usual best practices around safe and fun hiking, consider the following specific tips:
- Christopher Rock is a relatively new hiking area, maintained by a small group of volunteers. Trails are rugged and steep. Sometimes overgrown or blocked by fallen logs and branches. Be prepared.
- While close to Youbou, the area is also backed by a large area of wilderness. Especially elk, but also bears, deer, and even cougars can be encountered. Depending on season and time of day, sightings can be common. Bring a bear spray.
Maps and more
Maps can be found from the image and PDF file on this page, on Trailforks and on the trail head sign. Posts with further guidance are planned for a future installation.
The network is growing and needs constant care and expansion. Join us on our trail maintenance days and become a member.
The region has a special place in the hearts of Youbou residents. It commemorates the all-too-short lives of two young Youbou men: Christopher Fraser and Eric Sawatsky. They loved hiking up the wooded path to the stunning views of Cowichan Lake and mountains beyond, as you will too. Note as you hike that the trail lies on the traditional territory of the Ts’uubaa-asatx (People of the Lake), who lived, fished, and hunted along the lake’s shoreline for centuries.
Land use agreement
Mosaic Forest Management now owns the land and graciously grants you and other hikers the opportunity to appreciate the beauty of a working forest—a forest that has supported neighbouring communities for over 100 years. Through a land-use agreement with Mosaic, volunteers from the nonprofit Cowichan Lake Trail Blazers Society maintain the trail to create an awesome and safe hiking experience.