Trip Report – Two Mines and Some Karst – 12 Dec 2018

Having decided that Mt. Washington needed more snow before we make that trip, we substituted this outing.  Seven of us visited a number of caves and karst formations at the north end of Quadra Island.  We started at the Lucky Jim mine, an historic gold, silver and copper mine, which is well signed and has been made safe with gratings over the vertical shafts.  The steam donkey is huge and in good condition considering it was installed in about 1910.   We next visited a mine off of Open Bay Main, which we know very little about.  The horizontal shaft is in good condition. We continued to a karst cave with excellent marbling and were impressed by the risks inherent in the nearby grikes or eroded fissures in the limestone. 

After lunch in the parking area we cut over to the Granite Bay Road and an area of sink holes.  We started at a very large sinkhole with a lovely waterfall and then moved a short distance south for a walk following a creek which is insurgent and resurgent in the limestone.  There are areas where the creek seems to have re-routed for it no longer emerges.  The large sinkholes and walls are impressive.  We didn’t walk very far, but took our time enjoying the sites and the incredible green forest at this time of year.  A bit more than four hours, without the drive out.


Photos by Norris

(click on photos to view larger)

Exploring – Two Mines and Some Karst – 12 Dec 2018


Trip Report – Deepwater Mine and Bay – 5 Dec 2018

Deepwater Bay is on Discovery Passage, north of Seymour Narrows.  Deepwater canyon or valley (for lack of a better name;  it’s not quite a canyon and it’s more than a valley) is a big gap between Mt. Seymour and North Mountain, complete with a mountain stream which can be impressive.

Twelve of us set off on a clear, cold morning to explore it.  It was a winter wonderland, even without snow, all white from hoarfrost.  We stopped first on the Deepwater Main logging road to visit the old rail trestle, which is in ruins.  Then we hiked up the old logging road to the copper mine on North Mountain. The horizontal shaft is full of water and fascinating, but no one was tempted to go swimming.  We then hiked down the old road to the Bay, passed the abandoned fish hatchery, and had lunch in the beautiful warm sunshine, with great views of Deepwater Bay and Discovery Passage.  A lone sea lion swam by close to shore.  This area is full of the history of logging, mining and fishery on Quadra.   6.8 km; 3¼ hours.


Photos by Norris

(click on photos to view larger)

Hiking – Deepwater Copper Mine and Bay – 5 Dec 2018

Trip Report – Open Bay and Breton Islands – 2 Dec 2018

It was a chilly day, as there had been frost, but sunny and calm. Five paddlers set out from Len Road access to enjoy the sun and an afternoon on the water. There were a large number of eagles and loons out enjoying the sun as well. We paddled out of Hyacinthe Bay and headed over to the North Breton Island. The tide was quite high, 15.7 feet, so we were able to cross the rocks near the south end. From there we traveled north and came back down through Shellalligan Pass. We stopped on a little stretch of sand in Moulds Bay for tea and cookies. It was quite warm in the sun for this time of year. Afterwards we made a circle into Open Bay before returning to the cars. 3 hours, 6.6 nautical miles


Thanks to Norris and Les for the photos

(click on photos to view larger)

Kayaking – Open Bay & Breton Islands – 2 Dec 2018

Trip Report – Backdoor-Yellow Mud Loop – 28 Nov 2018

Fifteen hikers, along with Kona and Joey, the dogs, enjoyed a three hour hike in the area south of Walcan Road, starting at the pullout at Reed Lake. The weather was great for November – cloudy but with no rain, no wind and a pleasant 8° C. We headed south on Straight-as-a-Dime Trail, following a combination of newer bike trail sections and old logging roads. Turning east onto Backdoor Trail, we hiked over vibrant green moss-covered rock bluffs, through pine forest and past a perfectly mirrored pond. Shortly after going past some old mining camp debris, we headed north and followed Dick’s Ride down to Nighthawk Lake (variously named Yellow Mud, Hilda’s, Wood Duck and Beaver Pond Lake). Walking alongside the large lake created by a 20-meter-long plus beaver dam, we spotted Bufflehead and other waterbirds, and an unidentified hawk. We continued northwest down Yellow Mud Trail through lush sword fern, hemlock and Doug fir forest, paralleling McKercher Creek before arriving back at Reed Lake.  8.1 km.

Janis McLean

Thanks to Norris and Les for the photos

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Backdoor-Yellow Mud Loop – 28 Nov 2018

Trip Report – Kay du Bois Loop – 21 Nov 2018

Eight hikers and two dogs hiked a loop of the Kay du Bois trail and adjoining woodlot from the Sutil Road trailhead.  We hiked down the switchbacks to the rocky beach and enjoyed the rolling waves on a fairly windy day.  We continued along the quiet trail following the shore and then took the connector from the big Sitka Spruce tree up to the top of the bluff and walked the logging road back to the vehicles.  The weather was better than forecast and we stayed dry.  We all went back to Julie’s, where she served us an excellent lunch.  5.1 km; 1½ hours.

Julie and Debbie

Thanks to Norris and Eva for the photos

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Kay du Bois Loop – 21 Nov 2018

Trip Report – Haskin Farm & Golf Course Loop – 14 Nov 2018

Nine of us and three dogs didn’t mind the wet morning.  Although the night was stormy, the day was mostly dry and partly sunny.  We hiked through the forest and meadow on the Haskin Farm trail, down the switchbacks to the beach.  We enjoyed the fresh air, maple leaves thick on the trail, and the waves breaking on the shore.  We continued along the shore, appreciating the few old growth trees.  The golf course was quiet and very green.  There were Bald Eagles and a Red Tailed Hawk close by.  A lovely, easy walk.  5.3 km; 1½  hours.

Julie Mellanby

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Haskin Farm & Golf Course Loop – 14 Nov 2018

Trip Report – Steep Island – 12 Nov 2018

On a calm and partly sunny day, four kayaks set out from Q Cove for Steep Island. We first paddled into Unkak Cove as there was a 12 foot tide and much of the Cove dries at a lower tide. There were numerous birds there. It is too bad that there are also numerous old docks that have been left to rot away. From the Cove we traveled up in Discovery Passage by April Point. We were going with the ebb tide, but found many back eddies along the way. It was fun to have the tide moving in all different directions which kept you adjusting your paddling.

We stopped to have lunch and enjoy the sun at Vigilant Island, and shared some smoked salmon, cheese and crackers.  From there we went around Steep Island. There was some current getting there but almost none going along the west side where I thought it might be strong. A person may know if it is ebb or flood tide, but the current is constantly changing near shore. The tide was nearing slack now so we headed straight back to the Cove, though there was still come current against us. On the way we had two sea lions put on a bit of a show for us. It is unsettling for a creature bigger that the kayak to come up close to you. All in all a calm, warm and wonderful day for a paddle especially considering it is November.  7.8 nautical miles and 4 hours.


(click on photos to view larger)

Kayaking – Steep Island – 12 Nov 2018