Last September (Sept 13-14, 2017) I was fortunate enough to spend a couple of days getting acquainted with Victoria Lake, near Port Alice BC. This is a large (~16 km²), stunningly beautiful, mountainous island lake and, to my mind at least, one of Vancouver Islands great hidden treasures. Although the lake has a reputation for being windy, on our the second day there was barely a ripple making for exquisite paddling conditions. From the Spruce Bay Recreation Site, where we spent the night, we paddled South following the shoreline and admiring the rustic cabins that dot the shoreline in that part of the lake. After a while, we crossed over to the Western shore to check out a long gravel beach where we stopped for a snack and enjoyed a conversation with gentleman out fishing from a 14ft tin boat. From there we paddled back North, following the Western lake shore, looking for swimming and picnic spots. Despite the cabins and the lake’s close proximity to Port Alice, Victoria Lake has the feel of a true wilderness lake, particularly up at the north end where the shoreline rises steeply out of this crystal clear lake. Victoria Lake is now one of my favorite Vancouver Island lakes and one I’ll be going back to very soon.