Above: Katie Howald, Vanessa Kay, and Alina Colina crossing river rocks. Photo by Zach Altos.
By Sports and Lifestyle Editor Cole Schisler
The Englishman River Falls Provincial Park, located just outside of Parksville, is a must-see destination for all Islanders.
The park boasts two stunning waterfalls that run the length of a canyon, bordered by a dense old-growth forest. It gives the feeling of being lost in scenic rainforest filled with firs, hemlock, maple, and arbutus, the forest floor dotted with ferns and fallen logs.
When the river runs low, you can hop across rocks and explore the head of the upper waterfall. Use caution, as the rocks are slippery and the falls are treacherous. The lower falls lead to a calm pool, ideal for a swim in the icy river water. If you intend to swim, make sure to bring a towel, a change of clothes, and pick a warm day.
The park is open year round for day adventures. It is great for picnics, bike rides, and hikes along the various trails. The park asks that all visitors remain on designated trails to preserve plant life and the park also has a beautiful campground with 55 reservable campsites. The campground has closed for the winter season, and reopens April 29.
Cole is a second-year Bachelor of Arts student majoring in creative writing, minoring in political science. He has an interest in all things exciting, mundane, or otherwise. He hopes to one day become an author, actor, comedian, editor, and rapper, while moonlighting as an astronaut.