This section of the Quadra Trails website was updated on 17th March, 2018, a day after a thorough re-visit and new photograph session around the lake. photos by Greg Ross
You can access an old-growth grove near Stramberg Lake, and visit beautiful Stramberg Lake itself via Open Bay Main Road, or via Village Bay Lakes Road.
(1) Via Village Bay Lakes Road: Drive north from Heriot Bay for about ten miles until you see the first of the Village Bay Lakes on your right. The trail begins here on the left side of the road, just to the left of a logging road which climbs into the forest here. This trail has recently been trimmed and marked with red flagging tape takes you in about 20 minutes to an old homestead building and to Vic’s Marsh and Moses Meadow, which were the site of an old farm. Continue straight ahead and after 30 minutes you will pass an overgrown turnoff on your left which is the old Stramberg Lake Trail. This branches off the main trail to the left about an hour’s hike from the road. This trail is overgrown and could be very hard to follow, apart from the odd bit of old flagging tape which may still be on the odd tree. If you ignore the turnoff to Stramberg Lake and continue straight ahead you will come to the old-growth groove, at about two hours’ hike from the road. The trail continues straight on right through to an old logging road which takes you in about a mile to the Open Bay Main logging road. The quickest way back to your car would be via the route you walked in on. But, you could also walk a loop along the roads back to your car, which would take about 2 hours from the old growth groove.
This trail from Village Bay Lakes Road to the old growth grove was trimmed and re-marked with red tape in August 2017 by a Quadra Island volunteer. Thanks to Robert Bringhurst for his update on this trail.
(2) Via Open Bay Main Road: The quickest and easiest way to access Stramberg Lake is to drive north from Heriot Bay until you come, at the bottom of a steep hill, to Open Bay Main turnoff on your left, marked by the woodlot sign there, as shown in the photo below.
Turn left onto this dirt road and follow it for about 2 kms, past an orange metal gate on the right, until you come to a well-flagged spot on the right side of the road at point: N 50° 10.778′, W 125° 15.291. This spot is the start of an old logging road which you walk down for 5 minutes until it joins an active logging road and follow this down to a fork and take the left branch for 50 m further to point where you pick up the mossy old road heading off to your right at point: N 50° 10.901′, W 125° 14.917. Follow the old road again now, and soon you will see the parks sign, below, at N 50° 10.900′, W 125° 14.853.
Continue down the trail a few hundred meters until you see a plastic bread bag tied to a branch and take the left branch of the trail here, at: N 50° 11.018′, W 125° 14.663. The right branch of the trail here takes you right through to Village Bay Road and Village Bay Lakes.
Now from this point at the bread bag follow the left branch of the trail and this short trail takes you down to the shore of the lake’s south end. It is a beautiful secluded, silent spot here.
These two photos, above and below, show fresh wolf scat on the two trails into Stramberg Lake. Both photos were taken on 16th March, 2018. If you visit the lake at dusk or early morning you are certainly likely to hear wolves howling
To access the old-growth grove from Open Bay Main Road, continue driving northwest past the trail to Stramberg Lake. After a kilometer or so you will pass a trailer on the right then soon come to a larger bridge and cross over it and after another 200m you will come to two roads going off to your right. One road is a wide gravel road, the other road is a mossy old logging road. Take the mossy old road, which veers hard right at point: N 50° 11.495′, W 125° 15.961, where you will see a small sign and some flagging on a tree, as below.
After a kilometer you will come to a fork in the road. The right branch takes you immediately to a parking space where a signposted (below) short trail takes you down to Stramberg Lake’s north end. This trail begins at point: N 50° 11.394′, W 125° 15.192.
The left branch of the road here takes you a further 100 meters or so before the road becomes 4 x 4 only for its final 100m. At the end of this road is a parking space (at N 50° 11.509′, W 125° 15.098‘) and a foot-trail heads off to the left and takes you down after 300m to a large stream. Ford this stream and follow the flagging tape for 20 minutes to the old-growth grove. From the grove you can follow the trail through to Village Bay Lakes Road, or, return to Open Bay Main Road.