Skull Trail at Hartland mountain biking area

Mount Work – Hartland

Mount Work Regional Park is located roughly 15km from downtown Victoria and forms part of the area known as the Highlands. The east facing side of Mount Work is known as Hartland, an area of the park with trails built specifically for mountain biking. Hartland is even more affectionately known as ‘The Dump’, since it is situated adjacent to Hartland Landfill. The Dump is arguably the most popular riding area on the island, partly because of its proximity to the city but also because it’s a great place to ride!

Several overgrown roads used for small-scale logging decades ago criss-cross the entire mountain. Mountain bike pioneers in the Victoria area began using the old roads to access the area and start adding in single track trails. Since then, the area has evolved to an extensive network featuring a mix of old skool, modern flow, and beginner friendly trails.

You get an occasional scent from the dump while riding ‘Who’s Yer Daddy’, otherwise you would never know it’s there! The trails deliver heaps of signature island sandstone slab riding, in a magical forest full of Arbutus, Garry Oaks, and Douglas Fir trees, and moss everywhere! Because of the extensive bedrock riding, there are some line choices that are much smoother than others. The first few rides at the Dump may seem like they are lacking any flow. As you start dialing in your lines, the magic starts coming together!

The beginner trails are closer to the trailhead, complemented by an exceptional skills area shortly after starting down the first trail from the parking lot. The regional trails are generally comparable to a beginner trail and are great options for linking together easier trails. Going a little bit higher and further into the network, there are several great intermediate options, especially the ones that traverse the mountain from North to South. Advanced trails are scattered throughout the entire area, and become more numerous further from the trailhead. ‘Old school’ trails, or trails that tend to follow the steepest path down the mountain, exist more often in the middle of the area and head straight down the mountain. These trails get a lot less traffic, and are a great option for those looking for a more challenging ride with loads of nostalgia!

A few connector trails lead to more riding opportunities up and over on the west facing side of Mount Work and beyond, link these up for an epical Highlands riding adventure! The only trail that bikes are not permitted is the main hiking trail going up and over Mount Work. Besides the west side of Mount Work and the main trailhead, there are three other access points to Hartland: from Willis Point Rd, Meadowbrook Rd. and Woodridge Place – see coordinates below.

There are so many trails at Hartland, and endless route opportunities! Check out routes in the Victoria area on TrailForks for some ideas. Here are the top three trails for a few different trail types to help create the route for your next ride!

Beginner friendly trails

  • Easy Rider
  • Shock Treatment
  • Fire Drill

Climb Trails

  • Switchbacks
  • Inventive + Little Face
  • Sidewinder + North Ridge

Climb and Descend trails (great in both directions!)

  • Skull Trail
  • Fun+Funner+Funnest
  • Twister

Descend Trails

  • Who’s Yer Daddy + Night Shift
  • Jelly Roll and Lumpy Pants
  • Snakes and Ladders + Extension Ladder

Old Skool Trailz

  • Hot Cherry
  • Small Craft Warning
  • Birth Control

Jump Trails

  • Sofa King
  • Torpedo Run


Rock slabs and arbutus trees


Cost: FREE

When to go: Year round

Trip rating: B1

Access: Find your way to Highway 17A/West Saanich Rd, near Victoria. Hartland Avenue is a turn off from West Saanich Rd, between the observatory to the south and the Red Barn Market to the north. Travelling from the south (Victoria) it is a left turn off of West Saanich Rd. From the South (North Saanich, the ferry terminal, YYJ) it is a right turn from West Saanich Rd. Follow Hartland Rd. to the very end, as you arrive at the entrance to the dump, there is a large parking area on the right. Park your vehicle and start your ride by crossing Hartland Road and starting down the access trail.

Main trailhead at the end of Hartland Road: N48.53382 °, W123.45820 °

Access with parking spots on Willis Point Rd: N48.54524 °, W123.47731 °

Access from Meadowbrook Rd. via Executive Trail: N48.52164°, W123.45049°

Access from Woodridge Place: N48.51341°, W123.46520°

RAD adventure tip: the bedrock is super grippy – when it’s dry! When it’s wet, the grip totally changes!

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