Trip Report – Mt. Washington – 19 Jan 2022

Amazingly, and thankfully, the cold rain and wind held off long enough for five of us to enjoy the wonderful snowshoe trails of Mt Washington.  While this is not a free activity, like most of our outings, the well marked and tracked trails justify the cost ( $12 per person) .

After obtaining trail passes and one rental, we were on the trail by 10:30.  The initial blast of winter that greeted us let up and we set off in just sub zero weather and low cloud.  The snow was crunchy underfoot, thankfully no ice.   
We travelled clockwise, starting off on the green “Old Cabin Loop”, a very pretty and fairly flat loop through the forest and around the meadow.  It was wonderful to see several young families, and a herd of excited school kids, also enjoying this local treasure.  About ⅔ along “Old Cabin” we branched off onto “ Tree Beard” which, appropriately, heads up into the forest. A small plateau usually provides an excellent view, making for the perfect rest stop.  However, with a bit of a wind, and no view, we opted for a quick standing lunch break. Learning from other snowshoers that Rossiter’s Route was at least navigable, we opted for the longer return to Raven Lodge via Rossiter’s rather than continue on “Tree Beard”. “Rossiter’s” is one of two “black/difficult” snowshoe trails at Mt Washington and duly identified as a route ( not trail) on the map.  However, though long, it was not difficult going especially as we were going clockwise, thus going gradually down Rossiter’s Ridge.  In the wild, when there is a down there will almost inevitably be an up. Sure enough, a steep up eventually wound us back to Raven Lodge.  The promised ice rain finally materialized ensuring we were suitably wet as we returned to our cars.
Altogether a great winter outing, after so many trip weather-related postponements this season.  4.2 km. 2 hours

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Snow – Mt. Washington – 19 Jan 2022

Trip Report – West Road Woodlot – 29 Dec 2021

Due to the snow and cold, the planned trip to Village Bay Lake loop was saved for a better day.  The road conditions, the busy holidays and water pipes freezing in the cold kept the group small.  So three of us did a short local hike on logging roads instead.

It was overcast, but we had a pleasant stroll on snowy paths through a peaceful forest, plus a view of Gowlland Harbour.  It was good to get out.   3.9 km, 1¼ hours

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Hiking – West Road Woodlot – 29 Dec 2021

Trip Report – Gowlland Harbour – 21 Dec 2021

Paddle into Winter (Solstice)

A very nice winter day provided an opportunity for seven club members to get together for a 2 hour paddle to celebrate the Solstice. With an icy boat launch at April Point and a skim of ice in the harbour it was a wintry day. We paddled out of the marina on calm seas, overcast skies and temperatures around freezing. The three paddlers that put in further east in Gowlland, paddled against the current in the channel and met up with us for the trip out and along Gowlland Island. We rounded the top of Gowlland with Steep Island on our port side and then altered course towards the smaller island group and away from a cold northerly breeze.

The group split up again and four of us rounded Doe Island and headed for April Point and rode the ebb current through the channel.

The highlight of the trip was watching the efforts of an eagle in its attempt to snare a cormorant for its afternoon meal.


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Kayaking – Gowlland Harbour – 21 Dec 2021

Trip Report – Rampart Hill – 15 Dec 2021

It was an adventure; not everything went smoothly.  First we missed the 10:00 ferry, thinking mistakenly that it wouldn’t be a busy sailing. After waiting an hour for the next departure, the three of us drove up the Strathcona Parkway.  For this time of year, there is an amazing amount of snow, nearly down to the highway.  The road up to Mt. Washington was good enough, but there was so much snow, we decided to snowshoe at Rampart Hill instead.  It was snowing hard and we had lunch in the car before heading out.  Although the logging roads had snow packed down on the weekend, there was no visible trace and we were doing some serious trail breaking.  Once we left those packed roads it was even more challenging, because the snow was so unconsolidated, especially around brush.  Norris fell through twice, the first time down over a metre and he had real difficulty getting the snowshoe back to the surface.  Then Bonnie fell through and we decided we had had enough trail breaking for the day, so we headed back, rather than forward.  We never encountered anyone else on the trail.  It was beautiful in a monochromatic way and very quiet.  4 km, 2½ hours.


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Snow – Mt. Washington – 15 Dec 2021

Trip Report – Drew Creek and Rebecca Spit – 11 Dec 2021

On Saturday nine people decided to try a hike even though rain was threatening. To start we did the small trail at the mouth of Drew Creek. This is a wonderful little trail. It even has benches to sit and watch the creek roll by. The tide was extremely high and had the creek backed up for about 150 m.
We then walked to Rebecca Spit and turned south along the ocean down to the Sasquatch sculpture. It was about here that the heavy rain showers started off and on. We proceeded down through the new camping spots that have been developed very well. On the way back to the vehicles we were treated to a rainbow. 5.2 km about 1½ hours


Thanks to Les and Norris for the photos.

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Hiking – Drew Creek and Rebecca Spit – 11 Dec 2021

Trip Report – South Chinese Mtn Loop – 8 Dec 2021

After waiting a bit at the Heriot Bay meeting point, due to icy road conditions that morning, four of us met at the Chinese Mountain trailhead. We started clockwise on the South Mountain trail around 10:40.  Although there was snow left on the trail from the last snowfall, it was not too deep, and the abundant sunshine made wonderful conditions for the ascent.  Although some clouds remained over Vancouver Island, the view to the south from the western bluff lookouts was spectacular.  Although the snow on the trail had us deviating from the main trail, we easily regained it above us, and were able to follow the trial easily to the south lookout. The views were superb as we took a short lunch.  We took our time descending the eastern trail down in to the valley between north and south peak, as the steep steps down presented some slippery sections, and the old mining road down had a lot of running surface water causing some slippery parts. The total trip took just over 2½ hours.


Thanks to Brent and Norris for the photos.

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Hiking – South Chinese Mountain – 8 Dec 2021

Trip Report – Kay Dubois Trail and Whittington Woodlot – 1 Dec 2021

Seven of us started out from the end of Fox Road, walked down the hill and along Wa Wa Kie Road. We entered the Kay Dubois Trail and hiked the loop clockwise. For the first half of the walk, it almost looked as though the sun could come through. At the midpoint, when we stopped at the beach viewpoint for tea and a snack, a light rain started and followed us back to our parking spots. It was an easy, social walk and just felt great to be out even if it was a bit wet and muddy. 5.9 km and 1½ hours.


Thanks to Norris and Rob for the photos.

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Hiking – Kay Dubois Loop – 1 Dec 2021

Trip Report – South Stramberg Route – 24 Nov 2021

Thirteen of us hiked this trail even though the forecast was for rain and wind.  As it turned out, the weather wasn’t too bad, just some drizzle for a while.  It’s a forest trail anyway, so no views were missed, and the trees drip even when the rain stops.  The trail is very muddy in sections, so good boots are recommended.

Since the numbers were large, we split up into two smaller groups and that worked well.

We started on a recent logging road in a woodlot and continued on an old logging road through what is now Main Lake Provincial Park.  It’s a very pleasant old forest walk, partly on a mossy track and then through a wetter area.  After crossing the small creek we stopped for lunch in the forest before returning to the vehicles.  6.2 km and 2¼ hours.


Thanks to Norris and Carrie for the photos.

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Hiking – South Stramberg Route – 24 Nov 2021

Trip Report – Thompson Trail-Hopespring Loop – 17 Nov 2021

On Wednesday four hikers did the Hopespring/Thompson Trail in reverse. It is surprising when you do a circle trip in the opposite direction how much different it seems. Although cool, we were treated to dry weather with even a few sunny breaks. The moss covered rocks were brilliant green in the sunshine. We stopped for a short break at the old growth trees called The Three Sisters. They are magnificent Douglas Fir that survived the big fire of the 20’s.  A little farther down the trail we made a small side trip to visit 19 old growth trees. It is one of the few places on Quadra where so many are gathered together.  From here we climbed back up and over Heriot Ridge to finish the hike. 8.5 km and 2½ hours.


Thanks to Les for the photos.

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Hiking – Thompson Trail-Hopespring Loop – 17 Nov 2021

Trip Report – Shellaligan Pass Trail – 10 Nov 2021

There were 10 of us on this hike and we lucked out with a wonderful break in the rainy weather. Walking the larger of the loops in a counter clockwise direction we took in the fabulous ocean views and rock formations at the early part of the hike before stopping for lunch on a large rock outcrop at the onset of Village Bay. From there the trail continues along Village Bay providing views of the bay before going into amazing forested areas lush with trees and ferns. At one point the trail leads over a bridge that crosses a creek which was swollen with the recent rain water and then up a gradual incline parallel to the creek before joining onto logging roads further along. 6.6km; 3 hours

Thanks to Norris and Vikki for the photos

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Hiking – Shellaligan Pass Trail – 10 Nov 2021