Trip Report – Kayak Practice – 23 June 2022

Five club members met at Mine Lake to practice kayak rescues. As it was sunny, but cool and windy, blowing onshore, the decision was made not to paddle to another location and practice was held close to the boat launch. Participants discussed deck layout, paddle floats, and a dry running of a paddle float rescue and a group rescue.

Participants got in their boats or entered the water to practice solo rescues, including paddle float rescues with and without a sling assist. One couple also practised an assisted rescue involving two boats. Everyone seemed to be happy that they tried at least one rescue, and all came to the conclusion that rescue skills greatly diminish over a year’s period, and that at least two practices a year would definitely be beneficial and make paddlers more confident.

We had a relaxing lunch onshore as the day warmed up and two paddled along the south shore of Mine Lake and into the narrows, while the others returned home.

Brent Henry

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Kayaking Practice – Mine Lake – 23 June 2022

Trip Report – Discovery Passage Bluffs – 22 June 2022

Four of us parked at the official end of Leishmans Rd and continued along it as a forestry road.  After only a very short distance, we turned off onto a flagged path.  The first point of interest is a pair of huge rocks, or one gigantic rock split into two with a narrow walkway between them.  Continuing along the flagged path cleared through salal, we ended up at a splendid viewpoint of Discovery Passage facing south.  And it was a warm, sunny day.  From here we went north, sometimes following deer trails and sometimes walking on the rocky shore (tide dependent).  This whole section has good viewpoints and interesting cairns.  Finally as the grassy meadows that we had been walking through started to turn into forest, we had lunch and then headed up hill.  We climbed the grassy slopes and skirted the occasional rock band.  Once on top of the ridge, we could follow it back down to the south, keeping to open understory.  The east side of this ridge is quite a big cliff, bit it gradually diminishes and it’s easy to rejoin the original logging road.  We stopped to admire the big Douglas fir.   3.1 km; 3 hours

Norris
 

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Hiking – Discovery Passage Bluffs – 22 June 2022

Trip Report – Rousseau Ridge Loop – 15 June 2022

Our group of eight started at the trailhead for North Gowlland Trail and hiked quickly up to Rousseau Ridge.  From there we followed a flagged route descending toward Gowlland Harbour Rd, with a few short steep sections.  This is a very lovely hike over open, mossy bluffs with great views of Discovery Passage and the Vancouver Island mountains, which were in cloud for us.  We stopped for a lunch break on a bluff overlooking North Gowlland Harbour, noticing that the wreck off of May island was visible due to the very low tide.  We continued undulating down to a logging road heading east and then picked up a flagged route over lower, but still open bluffs taking us back to North Gowlland Trail.  We enjoyed the three very old Douglas firs, the Three Sisters, on the way back to make our loop.  We were concerned about rain in the forecast, but instead the day improved as we hiked.  6.7 km; 3¼ hours.

Debbie
 
Thanks to Norris and Carrie for the photos.
 

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Hiking – Rousseau Ridge Loop – 15 June 2022

Trip Report – Main Lake Provincial Park – 11-13 June 2022

This was supposed to be an easy start to the camping season, spending a few days at the Main Lake Provincial Park.  But the weather forecasters didn’t cooperate.  Instead of early summer, we were given early spring.  Looking on the bright side, there were no crowds.  Actually the weather turned out better than expected.  No rain at all, warm enough during the day.  We did postpone the trip by two days to avoid the atmospheric river.

Saturday – First surprise – the lake level was far higher than expected, higher than we had seen it during the winter.  It’s been a rainy spring.  We paddled 40 minutes (3.4 km) to Howard’s campsite and set up the camp.  We then paddled another 10 minutes (0.5 km) to the Bay campsite and changed into hiking boots.  We followed the stream up from the campsite to a small lake and back (3.6 km; 3¾ hours).  There are some very nice waterfalls along the way and some impressive trees.  We now know that the best route on the upper section is between the stream and the canyon wall on the east.  For the lower section it’s not clear what the best route through a flat boggy area is.  Then a 10 minute paddle back to camp for a relaxing evening.

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Sunday – The wind shifted to northwest.  We were joined by Les for the day.  We paddled over to the channel between Main Lake and Little Main Lake and through the willows.  Where Stramberg Creek joins Shadow Brook Creek, we decided to land, have lunch and stretch our legs since it was windy on Little Main Lake and there were few places to get out of the kayaks.  We explored where there used to be squatters..  The very high water levels made it easy to get through to Little Main after lunch.  In the lake we saw a beaver swimming .  We paddled back to Main Lake, parted with Les and returned to Howard.  (10.5 km; 3 hours)  Later in the afternoon we hiked up the ridge north of the campsite, which has steep cliffs on the east and west.  This was a pleasant hike through open forest with some big trees and views.  (2.0 km; 1½ hours)  It was still windy through the night with a super almost-full moon.

Monday –  We packed up the camp and paddled to East Beach campsite.  (1.3 km; 20 min)  We changed to hiking boots for a hike to Yeatman Bay on Okisollo Channel.  The stream was a problem to cross, so we used an old logging bridge a bit up from the campsite.  At the Bay, it was a very low tide, so took the opportunity to we walk out to what is often an island and back to the campsite for lunch (3.6 km; 1½ hours), and then paddled back to the Mine Lake boat launch.  (4.0 km; 1 hour).  As we began to drive home, the rain started.

Norris

Multi-day paddling, hiking, camping – Main Lake Prov Park – 11-13 June 2022

Trip Report – Ripple Rock Trail – 8 June 2022

We lined up at 8:00, to get on the 9:00 ferry for our Ripple Rock hike. After all the recent rain, we were almost giddy with delight at having a dry, sunny day. It took 20 minutes to drive north of Campbell River to the trailhead.

Our group of 9 set off amid lively conversations about recent and future travels. The trail was a bit muddy in sections, but otherwise good and easy to follow. We passed a few spectacular old growth trees and wondered why they were spared when trees around them were logged.

It is a popular trail and we met several other folks along the way and at the bluff. We ate lunch at the bluffs, looking over at Maud Island and watching tugs pull barges through Seymour Narrows.  8.7 km 4 hours with lunch stop

Diana
 
Thanks to Norris, Diana and Val for the photos
 

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Hiking – Ripple Rock Trail – 8 June 2022

Trip Report – BC Trail Day – 4 June 2022

The recent torrential rains definitely dampened our BC Trail Day celebration, but a few die-hards went for a short walk anyway. We used the Swale Trail and Black Jack to make a tight loop on the Community Centre trails, following some lovely paths through a fine forest.

The Quadra trail system is an amazing heritage that is worth recognizing. At the end of our walk it seemed fitting that we passed by the memorial to Judy Leicester who worked so hard on the trails. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to her and others like Hilda Van Orden, Marcie Wolter, Nole Lax, and Richard Leicester who did so much to develop these trails. And also to the current hard workers who carry on that tradition like John Barclay, Sam Whittingham and Ken Roxborough, and all the other many, many volunteers.

Debbie

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Hiking – BC Trail Day – 4 June 2022

Trip Report – Bretons and Beyond – 1 June 2022

Four paddlers put in from the Len Road access on a rare dry spring day, and headed off on calm waters. We picked our way through the rocks between the Bretons (staying well clear of the seals with pups) and then made the two km crossing to the Dunsterville Islands on the Read Island side of Hoskyn Channel. Circling the middle island of the group we observed many purple ochre sea stars, urchins, sea cucumbers, and an abalone or two. Landing on these islands is always a challenge as there is no beach, just large rocks covered with bladder wrack. With the work of landing and securing our kayaks on a rock shelf done, we turned to survey the channel we’d just crossed and immediately spotted a few Orcas on the far side. Four Orcas appeared to be feeding and moving north. To add to the excitement, the other half of the pod, another four to five Orcas surfaced very near to our vantage point and swam past us. All eight to nine of the pod soon submerged and moved off to the north out of our line of site.

We enjoyed a lunch break on the rocks under the watchful gaze of a pair of nesting geese, explored the island/campsite, and then relaunched our kayaks with a very light rain beginning. We decided to cross towards Shellaligan Pass and then meandered along the Quadra shore noting the abundant sea stars and several more abalone. As the tide was getting close to maximum low and the surface was quite calm we were able to view the bottom dwellers very clearly as we cruised along admiring the rock formations. We were rewarded for our diligent observations with a sighting of the Valdez cave formations in the rocky shoreline.

We crossed the mouth of Open Bay and Hyacinthe Bay and soon landed on the beach, at low tide, about 200 m from our cars! Luckily we’d brought wheels and managed to get our gear to the foreshore without too much effort. Some wheel systems proved to be more effective than others!  13.0 km; 4¾ hours.

Vic Gladish

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Kayaking – Bretons and Beyond – 1 June 2022

Trip Report – Mt. Seymour – 25 May 2022

As usual this spring, the weather threatened to cancel yet another hike – BUT – five determined club members defied the odds and set out on a windy, grey morning to ascend Quadra’s highest “peak”. It took us a little over an hour to hike up into the fast moving clouds and another 35 minutes to reach our goal and the first hints of some sunshine and breaking clouds. The views opened up as we ate lunch, out of the wind and in sight of the summit cairn. After an hour of eating and socializing we made our way back down the trail, which, by the way, is in very good condition.   3½ hours plus a 1 hr lunch.

Vic
 
Thanks to Vic for the photos.
 

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Hiking – Mt. Seymour – 25 May 2022

Trip Report – Gowlland Harbour – 21 May 2022

This trip was rescheduled from May 11 and this time the weather was perfect. The first paddle of the summer in bright sunshine with a light breeze. Three kayaks met the other two kayaks at April Point Marina. From there we went up the west side of Gowlland Island to Steep Island.

Between Steep and Gowlland we found a three meter wooden dinghy barely floating. One gunwale was a few inches above the surface while the other side was a few inches below. The stern and bow were also only marginally above water. The decision was made that we should move it out of the passage and the Gong Show began. Being submerged it was very hard to tow and constantly weaved back-and-forth. Finally with two kayaks towing and one on each side keeping it moving straight, we got it to the north end of Gowlland Island.

We then proceeded to May Island and around the north end of Gowlland Harbour. Jill Sampson was very gracious and allowed us to have lunch on her beach. After lunch we weaved down through the smaller islands looking at the spring flowers. The nicest seem to be on Stag Island.

The group stopped at my place and had refreshments and snacks on the deck. From there the paddlers went to each of their own launching spots. About four hours and six nautical miles travelled.

Les

Thanks to Norris and Les for the photos.

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Kayaking – Gowlland Harbour – 21 May 2022

Trip Report – Main Lake – 22 Apr 2022

At the last minute, the trip coordinator was unable to come on the trip, but the remaining seven paddled out from the Mine Lake boat launch through the narrows and across Main Lake to a grassy pullout through the brush.  The morning was very calm and relatively warm.  From there, we hiked a short distance, starting along Clear Lake Creek.  We followed a flagged route most of the way to two big trees: a Douglas fir with a circumference of 8 metres and a Western Red Cedar with a circumference of 7.2 metres.  It seemed a fitting destination for Earth Day.  We briefly wandered through the open forest of Main Lake Provincial Park to a bluff and then returned to the shore for lunch.  Four of the group returned directly to the vehicles and the other three paddled along the shore to the east, exploring camping possibilities and trailheads.  We didn’t see another person during the paddle or the hike and it was a lovely peaceful trip.  11.0 km; 4 hours

Debbie
 
Thanks to Norris, Terry and Jonathan for the photos.

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Paddling/Hiking – Main Lake Provincial Park – 22 Apr 2022