Wildflowers on the Canyon View Trail

This is the time of year on Vancouver Island to get down to local riverside trails and check out the spring wildflower bloom. One of my favourite places to walk is the the Canyon View Trail in Campbell River. We usually start this moderate 6 km loop trail at the John Hart Generation Station and then walk downstream along the north side of the Campbell River before crossing it on the Detwiler Road bridge and following the other side upstream.

Skunk Cabbage (Lysichiton americanum)
Even if your alergies are as bad as mine at this time of year, it is hard to miss the brilliant (and fragrant) Skunk Cabbage (Lysichiton americanum) in the wet spots along the Canyon View Trail.

Unlike further south at Pipers Lagoon, the flowers are just starting to really come into bloom now and should be excellent in the next week or so. In addition, there seems to be a little more variety in the river valley as the trail moves through different habitats. You can expect to see both pink fawn lilies (Erythronium revolutum) and white fawn lilies (Erythronium oregonum) here as well as a number of other riverside flowers.

White Fawn Lily (Erythronium oregonum)
White Fawn Lily (Erythronium oregonum) tends to be a little further from the river banks and higher in elevation than the Pink Fawn Lily (below).

I featured many of these flowers back in April, 2010 with Where the Wildflowers Are and last spring’s Canyon View Trail in Campbell River, but thought it would be worthwhile to share some new images from this year. It might just inspire you to search out some of these gorgeous flowers yourself!

Pink Fawn Lily (Erythronium revolutum)
Pink Fawn Lily (Erythronium revolutum) is more common closer to the edges of the Campbell River than the White Fawn Lily (above).
Slender Toothwort (Cardamine nuttallii)
Slender Toothwort (Cardamine nuttallii) is fairly common in the same habitats as both species of fawn lily. Perhaps a little thicker on the trail on the Highway 28 side of the river.
Pacific Bleeding Heart (Dicentra formosa)
Pacific Bleeding Heart (Dicentra formosa) is just starting to come into bloom. Look for it alongside the trail edges.
Western Trillium (Trillium ovatum)
Western Trillium (Trillium ovatum) is just starting to come into bloom and you might have to search a little to find fresh flowers.
Oval-leaved Blueberry (Vaccinium ovalifolium)
An Oval-leaved Blueberry (Vaccinium ovalifolium) added a zen-like quality to a couple of hours of botanizing.

Take some time over the next couple of weeks to get out and enjoy the wildflower display along the Campbell River. The variety of plants makes it an excellent botanical destination!

More photos can be viewed on my Tumblr post.

How to Get There:

Park at either the John Hart Generating Station (picnic tables and outhouse) or at the Detwiler Road bridge. The trail follows both sides of the river.