NTS Map:92F1. The top of Mt. Benson (1019 Mtrs) in Nanaimo gives great views of the Straight of Georgia, the Coast Mountains and the surrounding mountains behind Mt. Benson. There are many routes up Mt. Benson, this one starts at Witchcraft Lake, takes about 4 hours and is 8 kms long (round trip). The lower portion of the route is well worn, steep in sections and flagged in places but care must be taken to not wonder off the path do to the many paths all over the place. Hiking poles are a real asset here because the path is hard packed dirt that you can easily loose your footing on if you build up too much speed. The upper portion of the route is well worn and very straight forward. Close to the top there is one steep section that has a rope to assist you up.
Pick up the trail at the end of the road, which proceeds around Witchcraft Lake (looks more like a pond). In about 5 minutes you will be making a left over a bridge or across some logs. Go straight and look for a trail that heads up on your right, a sign marked Mt. Benson is nailed to a tree. In about 20 minutes the trail heads left up some steep terrain. Keep moving and in 25 minutes you will come to a sign pointing to Mt. Benson to the right. The trail then takes you to a rock pile in 10 minutes, head right. In 5 minutes you will come to an old logging road with a large rock cairn on it, make a right here and head up the logging road. In another 5 minutes you will come to another rock cairn, hang a left here and look for an orange blaze. In 5 minutes or so, you will see a flagged path on your left, ignore this. After 10 minutes of heading upwards, you will come to the rock face with the rope. After scaling the rock face, it will take you about 10 minutes to come to a logging road, hang a left here. Follow the trail upwards and in about 20 minutes you will be on top of Mt. Benson. Sit back and watch the action down in Nanaimo.
To get to Mt. Benson take Jinglepot road to Kilpatrick. Hang a right onto Bensonview Road. Follow this road right to the end and park along the side of the road.
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Posted By: Kristin Marie
- Tue May 23 04:42:32 UTC 2017
UpsideThe View is spectacular! Absolutely breath taking! The Trail is clean with plenty of visible markers. Great cardio session, in the peace and quiet DownsideThe trail follows a stream so parts are slippery especially on the way down. CommentI am in love with Mt Benson, the view from the peak is fantastic, miles of mountain ranges and Ocean!
Posted By: djfaders
- Fri Oct 21 15:35:06 UTC 2016
QuestionThanks Kurt for helping me with the Mt.Benson file.ANSWERS are in this forum: Mt.Benson
Posted By: djfaders
- Thu Oct 13 23:54:58 UTC 2016
QuestionHi, I downloaded the gpx for Mount Benson and only got 4 way points. Is this normal for the gps gpx files ?ANSWERS are in this forum: Mount Benson
Posted By: andersonglk
- Thu May 12 02:41:28 UTC 2016
UpsideWonderful view from the summit. New flags on the trail are very prominent. DownsideTrail is ugly and uninspiring. More brown than green. No respite on the way up, no good viewpoints, just brown rocks and small trees. No water, no deep undergrowth. CommentNot worth the slog. Great view, but not worth the ugly and difficult trail.
Posted By: georocks8
- Thu Dec 11 20:47:40 UTC 2014
UpsideGreat view of Nanaimo and surrounding Strait of Georgia and sunshine mountains. Path is worn enough such that losing you way would be difficult, follow the few markings there are or else you will end up on one of the other paths. Wooden posts with maps along the way however they often don't have "You are here" markings. On Sat mornings and nice weather days there are often several groups out hiking the trail so you can always ask for route advice along the way. Several good spots near the 2/3rd mark to sit and view the area. DownsideIt can be steep in places, especially at the beginning with loose dirt (when its really dry, or muddy spots when its wet) and at the top is a 100 m scramble of rock (however lots of trees as hand holds). Be careful on the way back down to take the correct trail, it branches at Y-intersections several (2-3) times and you need to make the right choice, be sure to stop and look behind you on the way up (taking a quick photo would also help). CommentYou start at 300m el. at the parking lot for Witchcraft and end up just above 1000 m, so 700 m vertical but only a few kms of distance. Tough at times so be in reasonable shape. Will hurt you knees on the way down if not in great shape, I highly suggest hiking poles for the way down. No really any spots for water so bring a couple of litres. On a good day I can be up in 1hr 20min and back down with some photos on top in 3 hrs. Group of co-workers went up and back in 5hrs and they are in normal shape, bit sore the next day but nothing some advil can't take care of.
Posted By: RyanRoga
- Mon Mar 24 18:51:58 UTC 2014
UpsideSome really beautiful views of Nanaimo</br></br> DownsideIt's very steep and rocky. When I first found this page it was rated as "easy" but that's a bitter lie. Moderate to advanced is more accurate. Constant steep grade means you need to be in shape if you want to make it to the top, and uneven, loose rocks means you really need to watch your footing. With no made path, if you hurt yourself, there's no easy way out.</br></br> CommentChallenging and rewarding hike. It had beautiful views and the occasional small waterfall on your way up. It was lovely.</br></br>