by Sheila Molloy –
The Centennial Trails were created to celebrate Saanich’s 2006 centennial by improving existing trails and creating new ones to fill gaps in the greater trail system.
You can piece together many different routes to build a great outing, but the choice for this one-hour (there and back) bike ride was based on the diversity of farmland, parks, bike-friendly residential streets and ocean views.
From Cedar Hill Cross Road, north onto Lochside Drive, continue 250m to parking area with ample parking. A meander down the path past the “Rings” sculpture, will start you at the Blenkinsop Greenway intersection. A handy Bicycle Repair Station and educational Centennial Trail history and map sign. From this junction you will head east onto the Blenkinsop Greenway toward Mount Douglas, past beautiful agricultural land that highlights the seasonal changes.
Crossing Blenkinsop Road, the path heads steeply uphill flanking Mount Douglas Cross Road (you can look forward to returning on this later).
Arriving at the crosswalk, go left onto Glenndenning Road. Mount Douglas looms in front of you now and this residential street follows alongside forested properties for scenic views on the way.
Turn right (east) right before the Mount Douglas parking lot (just after the red fire hydrant) onto a bike path that leads to Winchester Road, and then left almost immediately onto Parkside Crescent.
Another quiet ride on this residential street until you get to Cedar Hill Road. Turn left and it is just a short distance to take a right on Elnido Road that becomes San Juan Avenue after Shelbourne Street. Welcome to the San Juan Greenway.
The Greenway follows through a residential area with room for bikers and less car traffic. Once you arrive at Tyndall Park you run out of road. Go left and follow the park trail to where San Juan Avenue picks up again.
At the end of San Juan Avenue, cross Gordon Head Road, and at Arbutus Road you will see a wood post marker indicating a bike/walking path that takes you to the tranquil Arbutus Cove Park. Arbutus Cove is sheltered with rocky sections and sandy beach and is a great place for a rest before turning around.
Things to Note
• Paved and Gravel trails and paved roads
• Parking for 40+ vehicles at the beginning of the trail
• Pit toilet at start / junction.
Photos by Sheila Molloy