Trip Report – Cortes Island – 6-9 May 2019

A wonderful four days of sunshine for our Cortes Trip.

Day 1: Nine women came along, leaving Quadra on the 9:05 am ferry, arriving in Whaletown at approximately 9:45 am. We drove on to Linnaea Farm and took our food into the kitchen fridge to stay cold. We then drove to Manson’s Landing and hiked on the trails that the students had created through the forest to Manson’s Lagoon. Stopping to view the beautiful carved totem pole on the beach, then walked on to the lagoon. The timing was perfect because we reached the lagoon at low tide and walked out to the islands. The islands were covered with wild flowers, colours of blues, yellows, pinks and even chocolate lilies. We sat and ate our lunches, watching the geese with their babies. A number of blue starfish in the tidal pools along with sand dollars, a lovely treat, the lagoon was covered in shells. Return hike along the lagoon trail and onto Hague Lake, even two of the ladies swam. Then on to Manson’s to say ‘hello’ to Tom the turkey plus a treat from the Co-op, arriving at the farm by 4 pm, gear brought in and took the time to get settled. Dinner team # 1 prepared a delicious dinner, served at 6 pm. A group then took a walk around the farm, seeing the cows and the planting of produce etc. Nine pm we held meditation and everyone was present. Games were played by a few members, plus group discussions. A lovely end to a glorious day.

Day 2: Soon the kitchen was busy with individuals preparing their lunches and breakfasts. Eight am – meditation, the focus ‘I am my Silence’. This was a day for hiking Kw’as Park in silence, giving each person the opportunity to truly appreciate nature. The trails lead from Linnaea Farm along the sides of Hague and Gunflint lakes, through deep old forest with numerous old growth trees. We climbed up to the higher rocks overlooking Hague lake for lunch, warm sunshine with us, we all managed to find a little shade. In the afternoon we climbed over the high manzanita covered bluffs, a most beautiful avenue of tiny blue flowers helped our descent. Climbing down a newly erected steel ladder to the forest floor. Kw’as Park is a jewel, so much to see, to hear, to feel, we celebrated each step in silence. Arriving back at the farm in good time for dinner preparation by Team # 2. Another delicious dinner, giving us a chance to discuss our day of silence. Meditation at 9 pm again appreciated by all. All ready for a good nights sleep.

Day 3: Again, the busy kitchen with preparation for lunches and breakfasts. Today, the trip was to Blue Jay Farm, this is a 350 acre farm overlooking Carrington Bay and Squirrel Cove on the edge of Blue Jay Lake. A productive busy farm, chickens, cows, goats, ducks, lumber yard and also a huge amount of fresh produce grown, a magnificent farm. We toured the farm and then Tiger the cat came with us for a hike through the forest and around the lake, he took great care of us. We had lunch at the lake and a number of brave ladies swam in the cold waters. Another hike to a high ridge overlooking the farm and Carrington Bay and beyond. Such a wonderful day. We stopped for a short time at Squirrel Cove and then on to Linnaea Farm. Dinner Team 3 prepared the dinner, yet another delicious dinner. After dinner, a group went for a short walk and some played games. Nine pm meditation to end yet another beautiful day.

Day 4: Individuals awoke early to get a start for leaving the farm. We packed our lunches, ate breakfast and then cleaned. Nine-thirty am we set off to hike Easter Bluff, a pretty hot weather hike. Arriving at the top to take in the magnificent views overlooking the south and west end of Cortes and the mountains beyond, looking down on Cortes Bay, also a good view of Quadra. A trek down to Linnaea Farm to get into our vehicles, we then drove to Hanks Beach. This is a short forest walk to a secluded wide sandy beach with intriguing rock formations which we explored. Hanks Beach overlooks Twin Islands. We stopped awhile and ate our lunches before walking back to our vehicles. We then headed for the 3:50 pm ferry, reflecting on our wonderful trip to Cortes Island. The whales gave some a terrific display in the waters off Cortes.

A huge thank you to everyone, our fantastic trail guide, our meditation guide, the dinner teams etc. etc. A wonderful group. Yes, we were Silent on Day 2 for our walk in Kw’as Park. ‘ I am My Silence’.

Margot Wood.

Thanks to Jan, Janis, Kathryn and Cyndy for the photos

(click on photos to view larger)

Multi-day Hiking – Cortes Island – 6-9 May 2019

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Trip Report – Carrington Bay, Cortes – 23 Jan 2019

Eight of us had spectacular weather for our trip to the Children’s Forest on Cortes Island, including Carrington Bay and the Grandmother’s Grove.  We took the 9:05 ferry to Cortes and the views of Sutil Channel, the mainland and Vancouver Island mountains couldn’t have been better.  We were met by Sabina who guided us through the forest and told us so much about the efforts of the community to acquire this forest, so that this incredibly diverse and important habitat can remain intact. Sabina shared her amazing knowledge about so many topics including lichen and moss, wolves, wildlife trees, flying squirrels and owls and so much more.  We continued on to Carrington Bay and the tidal lagoon, and crossed the narrow channel through which the tide was rushing out.  We walked to the swim rock and sat in the sun for a leisurely lunch admiring the mergansers, golden eye ducks and a curious seal.  From there we continued on to Grandmothers Grove, a beautiful old growth stand of spruce and cedar, in the James Creek watershed which also supports cutthroat trout and spawning salmon. The greens of the mosses were vibrant after all the recent rain.  We followed the trail and logging roads back in a loop and made a short variation on the James Creek Trail before returning to the vehicles and the ferry. 10.4 km; 5 hours.

Thanks so much to Margot for organizing this event and to Sabina for sharing her enthusiasm and knowledge with us.

Debbie

(click on photos to view larger)

Here is a short video of the area using mostly drone footage:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-zs5BjQo2U

Hiking – Carrington Bay – 23 Jan 2019

Multi-day Hiking – Cortes Island – 6-9 May 2019

This trip is full.  Contact the coordinator if you wish to wait-list.

Activity Multi-day hiking, women only
Destination Cortes Island, staying at Linnaea Farm
Date 6-9 May 2019, Monday to Thursday
Trip Coordinator Margot Wood
Contact Info 250.285.2393; please contact the coordinator well in advance of the trip
Description Planning our annual Cortes hiking trip for women, staying at Linnaea Farm. An eight bedroom rustic farmhouse on the edge of Gunflint Lake, at the gateway to many of the hiking trails on Cortes. We are planning to hike many of the trails: Easter Bluff, K’was Park, Hanks Beech Forest Park, Sisken Forest Park, Whaletown Commons, Carrington Trails, etc. A schedule of trails will be developed and presented daily by Janis. We will be offering a short guided group meditation morning and evening to those who wish to participate. (7:45 am meditation and 9:00 pm relaxation meditation).  We are also planning one day of Silence as we hike in K’was Park, giving us the opportunity to immerse ourselves in nature without the distraction of conversation. Silence would begin after breakfast and conclude at dinner time on this day. Each person is responsible for their breakfast and lunch; dinner teams will be organized by Margot. Please visit: www.linnaeafarm.org

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Meeting Place Cortes ferry line-up. Vehicles must be in line-up by 8 a.m. This is a busy trades ferry.
Departure Time 9:05 am ferry to Cortes
Difficulty Moderate to easy
Dogs No
Trip Limits Limit of 8 ladies, or 9 if two wish to share a room.
Costs $30/person/night if you bring your own sleeping bag and towel. $50/person/night if you use Linnaea bedding, plus ferry costs and shared fuel. Bring your ferry card.
Notes Car-pooling and dinner teams will be organized by Margot. Let me know your diet needs. Please let me know a.s.a.p. as this trip will fill up fast. This is such a lovely happening on beautiful Cortes Island.

Hiking – Carrington Bay – 23 Jan 2019

Activity Hiking
Destination Carrington Bay, Cortes Island
Date 23 January 2019, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Margot Wood
Contact Info tel 250.285.2393.  Please contact the coordinator well in advance of the trip, so that car pools can be arranged.
Description Sabina is going to join us to be our guide and naturalist. This will be a great treat; Sabina is always filled with marine and environmental knowledge. We will drive to Carrington trailhead and proceed on the trails to Carrington Bay. This deeply cut bay is magnificent with the adjoining lagoon. Glaciers receded over the shoreline of Carrington Bay 10,000 years ago; lots to see and learn. We will have lunch at Carrington Bay and continue on to Grandmother’s Grove following the stream. We plan to return on the 3:50 p.m ferry.
Meeting Place Cortes ferry line-up.
Departure Time 9:05 a.m ferry; vehicles need to be in the ferry line-up not later than 8:15 a.m as this is a busy sailing.
Difficulty
Easy to moderate.
Costs Ferry travel costs; bring your experience card and ID
Trip limits
Dogs? no
Notes: Bring lunch and gear for weather.

Trip Report – Shark Spit – 25-28 June 2018

Day 1: Caught the 9:05 am ferry to Cortes Island. Launched from Whaletown Bay and kayaked over to Shark Spit. It was low tide on arrival and a bit of a haul with our camping and kayaking equipment. We had big tidal ranges during this trip. Set up camp and left for a kayak trip around Marina Island. A number of old growth trees on the shoreline, this island was logged about 20 years ago. Discovered an interesting house on the west side of Marina, it was balancing on the edge of a sand cliff. It took us 3 hours to paddle around. (approx 14 km.)  All enjoyed dinner and decided on an early retirement.

Day 2: Breakfast and set-off kayaking, hugging the shoreline, destination Manson’s Lagoon. Stopped to look at the petroglyphs on the entrance to Gorge Harbour. Paddled onto Manson’s Lagoon, arriving at low tide which gave us an interesting shell-filled lagoon. It was hot and we ate lunch under the trees. Walked through the avenue of arbutus trees and celebrated their beauty. Walked along the beach to the wonderful newly carved totem pole with bench. Off again hugging the shoreline, stopping to explore a pioneer’s hut with huge oyster beds just below the hut. The wind got up giving us a bit of a challenge. Stopped off at Gilean Douglas’s house at Channel Rock, to have a quick look. (approx 10 km)  After dinner, walked along the inside shoreline discovering wolf tracks. Dinner and welcomed the arrival of two more members on a windy evening.

Day 3: Breakfast and ready for another paddle. A bit windy at the start of this day. A member was leaving and we all paddled to Whaletown Bay, assisting with unpacking and putting the kayak on vehicle. Four of us then paddled through Plunger Passage, into the beautiful scenery of Sutil Channel and found a landing spot to eat lunch. Paddled onto Carrington Bay which is one of our favourite places. Explored the bay and lagoon. Back into our kayaks and paddled through Coulter Bay. A good workout for us and stopped at Sea Vista for a break before heading onto the spit. We made it. ( 26.6 km; 7½ hours) Ate delicious clams at night.

Day 4: Breakfast, packed up our tents, everything into our kayaks and began paddling. The two latecomers paddled around Marina and two paddlers went to Whaletown Bay to catch the ferry for Quadra and home.  Thank goodness we did not experience heavy rain on this trip, the weather was kind to us and the scenery magnificent. Shark Spit is such a beautiful camping area and a joy to be there.

Margot

Thanks to Norris and Vic for the photos

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Multi-day kayaking – Shark Spit – 25-28 June 2018

Trip Report – Cortes Island – 14-17 May 2018

Eight hikers arrived on beautiful Cortes, drove to Whaletown. Wandered around this sweet village, the floating dentist, the little post office, the tiny library and the church. Sculpin Potter opened his studio for viewing and some selected a few pieces. We even met the Sea Caption who was attacked by a bear last year in the Great Bear Rain Forest, he told us his story. He was busy painting bear paw prints on his boat. We then drove to Linnaea Farm and selected our bedrooms, all happily roomed. Ate lunch and then off for our first hike to Easter Bluff. It was an extremely hot day and thank goodness we were in the woods. What a delight to reach the summit, with its views of Cortes Bay, looking down on Linnaea Farm fields and beyond, incredible views. All found a little shade to sit and cool down. Returned to the farm and a number of members jumped in the lake.
We noticed a very tall fir clothed in wisteria on the shoreline, so beautiful. Dinner Team # 1 cooked a delicious meal, everyone sitting around the large table sharing stories and getting to know each other. We all ate so much, we decided to take a walk to see a close-up of the wisteria tree. Bed time.
Day 2: Another hot and sunny day. Up early, everyone ate a good breakfast, lunch packed and off to K’was Park Trail Network. Janis was our fantastic guide. This network of trails varies in difficulty and moderate climbs. Rugged in some places, magnificent old growth with trails that lead around the two lakes of Hague and Gunflint. Found wonderful places to stop, reflect, eat lunch, and just rest from the heat. Some of us climbed to the high manzanita covered bluffs, up and down the ladder, certainly well worth the climb. We always find this park magical. One could spend days in this park, we still need to walk the ‘Secret Trail’, next time for sure. Returned to the farm and several jumped in the lake or took out the canoe. Dinner Team # 2 cooked another delicious dinner, many laughs and stories happened around the table. We all helped with clean-up, giving us the time to travel to Smelt Bay to watch the sunset. Wandered along the beach, families were on the beach enjoying the warm night, even a trumpet player. A wonderful display of the sunset over Marina Island. Back to the farm and all filled with beauty.
Day 3: Yet another gorgeous day. Cyndy was our guide on this day. First stop, a walk through the woods to Hanks Beach. It was truly wonderful sitting on the magnificent rocks overlooking Twin Islands. We then drove to Manson’s Lagoon, low tide at this time giving us the opportunity to walk out and explore the beach pools and the islands. The islands were covered with wild flowers, colours of blues, yellows and pinks. We enjoyed having lunch on the top taking in the serenity of the lagoon. Off to walk the trail through the woods to Mansons Landing, stopping at the Community Co-op for a treat and to say ‘hello’ to the old turkey in the community gardens. A trip to Cortes Museum and all enjoyed the exhibit of ‘Refuge Cove’. Walked to Cortes School, terrific gardens created by staff and students. We then walked the trail, again created and mapped by the students of Cortes School. A beautiful trail that led us back to Mansons Lagoon. We stopped and marvelled at the newly carved totem pole overlooking Mansons Bay. Returned to Linnaea, of course a number jumped in the lake to cool down. Dinner Team # 3 prepared a delicious dinner, enjoyed by all. After dinner we then drove to Hollyhock to wander the garden and the beach area. A lovely treat to end our day.
Day 4: Members up early, clean-up began in the farmhouse. Everyone pitched in and soon the house was sparkling clean. After breakfast, food and gear packed, said our ‘goodbye’s’ to the farm and off to Carrington Bay. A beautiful hike through the woods down to the bay. Stories and dancing performed on the stage and enjoyed by all. Explored the magnificent lagoon, lots of starfish and sea cucumbers. Such a beautiful camping area. Took the trail to ‘Grandmother’s Grove’, feeling the energy and beauty it gives. The Forest Trust for the Children of Cortes Island Society has been formed to purchase these forestlands and to hold them in trust for the children of Cortes Island in perpetuity. Members managed to connect with the 1:50 p.m ferry for home.
We all gave input regarding our Cortes Trip, communicating how much we all enjoyed these days on Cortes, the trails, the laughs, the stories, the sharing and giving, the delicious food and of course staying at Linnaea Farm is always a delight. Many thanks to our guides, the drivers, our stretching exercise teacher, and for the donation collected for ‘The Children’s Forest’. A terrific group of members at Margot thanks you all for your positive support.

Margot

Thanks to Jan, Bonnie, Cyndy and Mary for the photos

(click on photos to view larger)

Multi-day Hiking – Cortes Island – 14-17 May 2018

Multi-day Kayaking – Cortes Island, Shark Spit – 25-28 June 2018

Activity Multi-day Kayaking
Destination Cortes Island, Shark Spit
Date 25-28 June 2018: three nights, four days, Monday to Thursday
Trip Coordinator Margot Wood
Contact Info 250-285-2393.  Please contact the coordinator by June 1st.
Description We will take the first ferry to Cortes, this can be a very busy ferry, please arrive at 8 am. We will launch kayaks in Whaletown Bay and paddle to Shark Spit, to set-up camp. This is such a beautiful camping area in the woods with many lovely sites. Weather conditions will determine our kayaking routes. Choices would be: Carrington Bay returning with a paddle in Coulter Bay; kayak around Marina at low tide, just gorgeous; Manson’s Landing, Smelt Bay and around Sutil Point. Dare we ‘do’ Gorge Harbour, all exciting. I am sure we will hear the wolves at Shark Spit either morning/evening and may even see them……lets hope.
Paddlers will bring their own breakfast, lunch, water and camping equipment. . Margot will put together ‘dinner teams’. Do not forget treats.
Meeting Place Cortes ferry line-up (8:00 am)
Departure Time 9:05 am ferry
Difficulty
Moderate to difficult
Costs Ferry cost
Trip limits Eight kayakers.  Let’s try to car-pool.
Dogs? no
Notes: Must have kayak rescue skills, sea kayak and all kayak safety equipment.
The paddle could be moderate or difficult depending on the weather conditions and the wind can soon pick-up, we must be prepared for this happening. The beauty is astounding and hopefully we will see lots of wildlife.