Hike Rating 8Lone Cone is the wonderful cone shaped mountain that dominates the skyline in Tofino.  It is just 6k from Tofino on the north-western end of Meares Island.  Lone Cone is an incredible hike to do while in Tofino.  There are several attributes that make it fantastic.  First, its location.  Very close to Tofino.  Just a short and very scenic boat taxi takes you to the trailhead. 

  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProIncredible summit views
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProMostly untouched wilderness
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProSteep, but short trail to summit
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProQuiet compared to other hikes
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProUnique vantage point over Tofino
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProIconic mountain to climb
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProChallenging trail never gets boring
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ProOvernighting is easy to get away with
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ConAccess fees introduced recently
  • Clayoquot Hiking Trails ConNo fires & no camping allowed

Clayoquot Hiking Trails

  Easy Hiking TrailThe Big Tree Trail  Easy Hiking TrailHot Springs Cove  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailLone Cone  Easy Hiking TrailNuu Chah Nulth  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailRadar Beach  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailRadar Hill  Easy Hiking TrailVargas Island  Virgin Falls  Easy Hiking TrailWild Pacific Trail

Victoria Hiking Trails

  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailAvatar Grove  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailBear Hill  Easy Hiking TrailEast Sooke Park  Victoria Hiking TrailElk/Beaver Lake  Victoria Hiking TrailEsquimalt Lagoon  Easy Pay Hiking Trail VictoriaFort Rodd Hill  Easy Hiking TrailFrancis/King  Victoria Hiking TrailGalloping Goose  Easy Hiking TrailGoldstream Park  Easy Hiking TrailGowlland Tod  Easy Hiking TrailGrass Lake  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailJohn Dean Park  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailJuan de Fuca Trail  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailLone Tree Hill  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailMill Hill  Steep, Dog Friendly TrailMount Douglas  Easy Hiking TrailMount Tolmie  Easy Hiking TrailSooke Potholes  Victoria Hiking TrailSpectacle Lake  Easy Hiking TrailThetis Lake  Victoria Hiking TrailWitty's Lagoon

Second, is it is such an abruptly steep hike that you go from the ocean to absurdly sweeping views in just over an hour.  Due to the location of Lone Cone requiring a water taxi to access, ensures that it remains serene and quiet most days.  In the 15 minute, fast taxi, you will see a quick look at the spectacular scenery that has made Tofino famous.  Small and large islands crammed almost solid with beautifully huge trees. Sandy beaches that make you think more that you are in Hawaii than in Canada.  Abrupt, rocky outcrops with chaotic, swirling, clear and green water that the boat taxi/tour guide continuously points to unexpectedly beautiful creatures lurking in.  Then you look up in the trees and spot a resident eagle staring menacingly down from a tree branch next to its nest full of offspring.  And that's just the first five minutes from the pier.  15 minutes from the pier you arrive at the grungy, though at the same time, strangely beautiful pier at the now abandoned town, Kakawis.  There are still a few dozen houses that line the gravel road you will see as you make your way to the trailhead.  In 2013 another trailhead was opened closer to Tofino but much further from Lone Cone.  This trailhead also has a $5 fee to access.

Lone Cone Hiking Trail Map

From the pier you follow the gravel road which seems to take you further from Lone Cone.  About five minutes down this road you will see the houses of Kakawis on your right, and keeping on the gravel road you will soon see the large "Lone Cone" sign pointing you left to the very well marked trail into the deep forest and muddy first section of the trail.  Though there has been a fair amount of mud avoiding constructions you still might get a bit muddy here.  Though you can hop from one tree root to another fairly effectively, a couple slips and stumbles may get you wet and dirty.  1.2k into the hike (from the pier), you finally begin ascending.  Slowly at first then at 1.8k steeper and steeper.  From this point until the end of the trail the hike averages about 45 degrees!  Lone Cone is, near and at the top, quite massive.  And though the marked trail ends and the amazing views the exploring has just begun.  You could wander for hours through the forest at the top, however, the viewpoints on the marked trail are hard to beat.

Lone Cone Hike in Clayoquot

At the main viewpoint the is a small and evidently well used place for a fire right at the edge of the cliff.  This area also, if you were inclined, have room for a tent or two, though you read at the trailhead that camping is prohibited.  There are several suitable places to put your tent if you are keen further into the bush past this viewpoint.  The quick and inexpensive taxi to the trailhead/pier on Meares Island is less than $50(return).  You can phone or arrange a pickup time before you set off on the trail.

Water Taxi View of Lone Cone

Lone Cone Dock

Lone Cone Hiking Trail

Lone Cone Trail Giant Cedar

Lone Cone Trail Ravine Crossing

Lone Cone Trail Steep Hike

Lone Cone Trail Deadfall

Lone Cone Trail View

Lone Cone Trail View

Lone Cone Summit View

Lone Cone Summit View

Lone Cone Summit View

Lone Cone Summit View

Lone Cone Summit Tent

Lone Cone Summit Tent

Lone Cone Summit View

Directions to Lone Cone

Tofino Water Taxi to Lone ConeTofino Water Taxi will ferry you over to Meares Island and the trailhead to Lone Cone.  It is a pretty quick and very scenic, 10 minute ride across to Meares Island.  They don't usually do scheduled runs to Lone Cone, so you will have to call or drop into their office to arrange to go.  The cost is $49 return and is well worth the money.  The boat ride alone, it quite fun and the driver is happy to fill you in on the local history.  They arrange a time to pick you up and they estimate your hiking time based on the average for most hikers of 4-6 hours.  More info at: tofinowatertaxi.com or email them at [email protected], or call them toll free at 1.866.794.2537.

Lone Cone Directions Map

West Coast Trail Guide 2023 2

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