In 1911, the Canadian National Pacific Railway dedicated a line on Vancouver Island to connect Victoria to Nootka Sound. By 1918, only 6 km of track had been laid. The Federal government took over the line as part of the CNR and work continued. The steel was finally laid in April 1920. The completed trestle, at 187.6 m long and 38 m high, is the largest Howe truss, bent pile trestle left in the world. The line passes through the Cowichan Valley, which was a bonus for the local logging industry, but never reached Nootka Sound. The last train across the trestle was in May 1979 and the rails were removed in 1983. Neglect and vandalism has made it necessary to block access to the trestle even though the trestle is part of the Trans Canada Trail system. This large wooden structure is awe-inspiring, even in its current state of deterioration, and worth a visit. As early as the 1980's, advocates of the trestle tried to have it restored and/or designated as a heritage structure. There is renewed optimism that a full restoration will take place in the near future. Completely restored, and accessible to the public, the Kinsol Trestle will prove to be one of the most exciting sections of the entire Trans Canada Trail route.
For more information, see the official Kinsol Trestle web site.