This wondrous display of Douglas-fir, Western Hemlock, Grand fir and Western Red Cedar has been undergoing the restoration of its trails since a severe windstorm damaged several sections of the park in January 1997.
Although visitors will now find many of these huge trees lying on the ground, their value has not diminished. These fallen trees open the canopy to provide light, space, shelter and nutrients for the next generations of plants. Natural regeneration is beginning to restore the Cathedral Grove’s pristine beauty, and the park’s diversity, making a visit to Cathedral Grove all the more intriguing.
Protests by environmental group have unfortunately failed to stop logging companies clearcutting trees right up to the park boundary, thereby threatening the park ecosystem and destroying the wind barrier so necessary to prevent future blowdowns.
In restoring the trails, sections of some fallen trees were removed, offering a close-up opportunity for the curious to count the annual rings. Determine their age for yourself!
Many species of wildlife use the old-growth forest as their home, including several types of woodpeckers, owls, insects, reptiles, amphibians, deer, elk, black bear and cougar. The Cameron River, which flows through the park, contains rainbow, brown and cutthroat trout.
The well-known forester, H.R. MacMillan, donated the 136 hectares of land in 1944 for the perpetual enjoyment of the public in recognition of the unique stand of trees. The area was established as a provincial park three years later, and expanded in size in the spring of 2005.
Park facilities are limited to pit toilets located on either side of Hwy #4, next to the parking lot. Once you have had your fill of these wonderful trees, you can swim or fish in Cameron Lake, picnic along its shores or hike to neighbouring Little Qualicum Falls Park.
The 157-hectare MacMillan Provincial Park is located on both sides of Pacific Highway 4 on the shores of Cameron Lake, 19 miles (30 km) west of Parksville and 10 miles (16 km) east of Port Alberni on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.
Nearby Regions & Towns
FarOut WildernessFarOut Wilderness
FarOut Wilderness is an outdoor adventure travel company specializing in overland vehicle rentals and tailor-made itineraries in British Columbia. We use our local knowledge and experience to transform your ideas into an authentic and unique adventure.
Our self-drive itineraries allow you to explore off the beaten track at your own pace. We provide you with the resources to re-connect with nature and most importantly each another. All of our vehicles are fully insured for driving on unpaved roads and are equipped with a rooftop tent, camping equipment and GPS Messenger service.
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Beach Acres ResortBeach Acres Resort
It’s all in the name, Beach Acres Resort … miles of warm sandy beach, ocean and mountain views, acres of lush forest, and a range of resort accommodations to delight your family and friends. Our family-friendly, beachfront accommodations offer private self-contained cottages, spacious townhouses – all with two bedrooms, fully equipped kitchens and fireplaces – and majestic ocean views from every window.
Situated on 23 acres of forested property bordered by Rathtrevor Beach’s sandy seashore, we offer the perfect mix of relaxation, adventure, waterfront, forest, and private accommodation … the perfect place for a relaxing vacation retreat or romantic Vancouver Island getaway. The perfect “kid-free” getaway awaits in a cozy little cottage … right on the beach.
Practicar NanaimoPracticar Nanaimo
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