Oliver Lake Park and Trail in Prince Rupert, British Columbia, Canada is a peaceful, serene environment, naturally left on its own, south of the community. The park was named after John Oliver, who served as Premier of BC from 1918-1927.
Oliver Lake is home to the exotic Bonsai Tree reported to be over 125 years old. These are trees stunted by climate... bent and twisted by the seasons and poor soil. From the parking lot a gravel trail leads to the picnic tables, the lakefront and to the trailhead of the Oliver Lake Dwarf Forest Trail.
The trail system is a mix-match of gravel trails, boardwalk and unimproved trails (little maintenance). The loop trail system follows the lake shoreline leading into forests filled with Shore Pine, Red & Yellow Cedar, Spruce, Juniper and Hemlock trees plus... sphagnum moss, salal and bog blueberry and cranberry bushes.
The area is a popular destination for hikers, but also for wildlife. Visiting Oliver Lake and hiking the Dwarf Forest Trail provides a good opportunity to view Bald Eagles and Ravens. Also living in the area but are harder to catch a glimpse of are Black Bears, Wolves, Porcupines and Beavers.
A muskeg eco-system surrounds the Oliver Lake trail system. Muskeg is a Canadian First Nation word referring to bogs, streams and exposed rock and shrub forests. Muskeg regions are high in acidic soil and black nutrients therefore stunting the growth of the areas vegetation, hence Bonsai Trees.
The trail interpretive sign in the parking lot highlights the historical importance of the land to the First Nation People. Much of the land, at one time, was used for medicinal purposes such as cultivating plants like Labrador Tea, Sphagnum Moss and Sundew.