3 - 4
FATMAP difficulty grade
After a gentle introduction on the first day of the Juan De Fuca Trail, day 2 is much more challenging.
This section of the trail is rated as the most difficult by BC parks.
That is based on the fact there is more technical terrain in this part of the trail and also a large amount of elevation gain. The trail is a constant up and down for most of the way to Chin Beach, but one positive of all that elevation is this is actually a relatively dry section of trail compared to some of the other days.
For that reason lots of hikers actually find this trail easier than some of the trails that are technically easier, but much muddier.
That doesn't mean there is no mud on this trail though, it wouldn't the Juan De Fuca trail if there wasn't at least some mud to have to hike through.
There is a reward for completing this difficult trail, there are a number of places along the trail where the trees open up to give great views of the ocean, with the forest perfectly framing it.
Even when you are hiking on the inland trail, the lush green rainforest makes for some spectacular scenery and helps distract you from the uneven and difficult trail.
Be sure to take some time to stop and admire the scenery as you make your way towards Chin Beach. There is a tidal cut off point at Chin Beach, so you need to try to plan your day to arrive at the beach before the high tide.
The emergency shelter just before the beach cut off can be used to rest and wait for the tide to retreat if you arrive at high tide, but ideally you want to avoid having to do this. Chin beach is another beautiful beach campground, as you are now further along the trail the campground is less crowded and feels much more remote.
As with all the coastal campgrounds on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, the sunsets are spectacular and not to be missed.