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
 
Valerie

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Snow – Mt. Washington – 19 Jan 2022

Snow – Mt. Washington – 16 Feb 2022

Activity Snow shoeing or cross country skiing
Destination Mt. Washington
Date 16 Feb, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Debbie Quigg
Contact Info debbie.quigg@ualberta.ca or 3710;  Please contact the coordinator by Monday night.
Description We will go either to Rampart Hill or Mt. Washington depending on the group and conditions.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 9:00 ferry;  drivers need to be early to board.
Difficulty
Moderate, depending on conditions.
Costs Ferry and fuel. If we go to Mt Washington the snow shoe trail pass is $12 and the x-country ski pass is $20 for seniors.
Trip limits None
Dogs? No
Notes: Bring lunch and gear for winter conditions,  Let the coordinator know if you need to rent gear.  It’s best not to assume that we will have lunch indoors.

Snow – Mt. Washington – 19 Jan 2022

Activity Snow shoeing
Destination Mt. Washington
Date 19 Jan, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Valerie van Veen
Contact Info vvv@qisland.ca;  250 285 2329
Description Snowshoe Mt Washington trails.  There is a trail pass charge (see below).  Mt Washington trails are excellent and very beautiful.
Meeting Place Parking lot just off highway at Mt Washington turnoff
Departure Time 9:00 ferry
Difficulty
Moderate
Costs Ferry, fuel and Mt Washington show shoe trail pass $12
Trip limits None
Dogs? No
Notes: If you are new to snowshoeing please contact coordinator, I would love to take you out on Mt W trails. Snowshoes can be rented at the Nordic Centre, https://www.mountwashington.ca/snowshoeing.html to book ahead. Must register by Monday night to participate. Bring lunch, snacks. Participants are expected to carry the usual winter safety gear for this sport.

Hiking – Campbell River Waterfront – 9 Feb 2022

Activity Hot Chocolate Walk
Destination Campbell River waterfront, to FoggDukkers, return
Date 9 Feb, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Valerie van Veen
Contact Info vvv@qisland.ca;  250 285 2329
Description This will be a brisk walk along the CR waterfront to FoggDukkers for Hot Chocolate (or ?), probable return on 1:30 pm ferry. FoggDukkers will open for us, on request, regardless of weather. Seating will probably still be only outside, current VIHA Covid restrictions. If weather is really awful, we will follow Plan B and turn right instead for a shorter walk, and take our own thermoses (or pick up a hot chocolate at the new coffee shop in Discovery Plaza) to Dick Murphy Park at the Spit, and return.
Meeting Place Ferry Terminal , CR, sidewalk at walk off area
Departure Time 10:00 ferry
Difficulty
Easy
Costs Ferry and hot chocolate
Trip limits None
Dogs? Leash only
Notes: Dress for the weather, and especially for sitting outside. Maybe bring a waterproof sit-upon. Those taking their cars must phone coordinator before Wednesday to arrange a meeting place. Must register by Monday night, phone or email coordinator. Participants will be notified by Tuesday night if Plan B is decided.

Hiking – Quinsam River Trails – 23 Feb 2022

This trip was originally scheduled for Jan 5th.

Activity Hiking
Destination Quinsam River Trails
Date 23 Feb 5 Jan, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Debbie Quigg
Contact Info debbie.quigg@ualberta.ca; 250-285-3710.  Please contact the coordinator by Monday evening.
Description We will hike along the east side of the Quinsam River, using mountain bike trails and logging roads.  This follows a variety of terrain down to the river.  Expect some muddy conditions.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal;  after exiting the ferry, we will drive to the parking area together.
Departure Time 10:00; drivers will need to be early to ensure that they can board
Difficulty
Easy
Costs Ferry
Trip limits 10
Dogs?
Notes:

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.

Debbie

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Snow – Mt. Washington – 15 Dec 2021

Snow – Mt Washington – 15 Dec 2021

Activity Snowshoeing
Destination Mt. Washington area
Date 15 Dec 2021, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Debbie Quigg
Contact Info debbie.quigg@ualberta.ca or 3710.  Please contact the coordinator by Monday night.
Description  The intention is to go snowshoeing near Mt. Washington, which is scheduled to open on Dec 10th.  As the snow conditions are still unknown, the plan is not precise until closer to the date.  The like destinations are Paradise Meadows or Ramparts Hill.
If you wish to car pool, please make your own arrangements with others of similar vaccination status.
Meeting Place Q-Cove Ferry; Drivers need to be on time to make the busy 9:00 sailing.
Departure Time 10:00 9:00 ferry from Quathiaski Cove
Difficulty
Moderate, depending on the group
Costs Ferry and fuel. $12.00 for a snowshoe trail pass if we go to Mt. Washington nordic area.
Trip limits The limit is usually the number of cars driving up.  Cars should have chains available.  Car pooling will be at the discretion fo the driver, balancing fuel shortages and COVID caution.
Dogs?
Notes: Bring gear for the conditions and lunch.  Rental equipment is not available if we go to Ramparts Hill.

Trip Report – Cultural Walk – 20 Oct 2021

In honour of Truth and Reconciliation the QI Outdoor Club undertook a unique outing this week. Ten members, and one prospective member, went on an urban walk with a Reconciliation theme. Starting at the “Silver Lining” sculpture (K. McKenzie) with its accompanying homage to the missing children of Canada’s Indian Residential “Schools” (IRS) we set out on our urban “hike”. Downhill to the ferry, across the Passage, and then a sweat-inducing uphill walk to the Laichwiltach Family Society complex on 4th Avenue, on a typical fall day. After being welcomed there by two resident Elders we were introduced to Carey Newman’s “Witness Blanket”, a national monument to recognize the atrocities of the IRS. We spent time studying the replica of this monument (the original is at the Human Rights Museum in Winnipeg; see https://humanrights.ca/story/picking-up-the-pieces-the-making-of-the-witness-blanket for more information) and then heard the very impactful stories of two survivors of residential school. To help each one of us process the emotions and learnings of our experience, our Elder Hosts did a cedar brushing ceremony before our departure.

The next part of our journey took us on a short downhill walk to the Campbell River Museum and the “Sacred Journey” exhibit. https://crmuseum.ca/2021/01/04/sacred-journeys-exhibition/. This stunning multimedia exhibit is in its last weeks before moving on to Victoria and beyond. Produced by Heiltsuk Hemas, Frank Brown, to celebrate the history and renaissance of Pacific North West Coast canoe culture and 30 years of tribal journeys, the exhibit was made possible by the creative talents of several Quadra Islanders.

From the museum we continued our urban walk along Thulin Drive and back into downtown Campbell River where we took our lunch stop at the Crooked Spoon Cafe on Shoppers Row. This was a first for many of the group and the food and service received a very strong endorsement from all. The planned continuation of the trip to Tyee Spit was modified at this point. Well satiated on a big lunch and plenty of discussion, we all decided to continue the day doing our own thing!

Vic

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Cultural Walk – Campbell River – 20 Oct 2021

Trip Report – Quinsam River trails – 13 Oct 2021

Five of us set out on the Quinsam River Nature Trail on a cloudy day made colourful by the colour of the Big Leaf Maples.  The trail was quite busy with people walking and fishing. As we followed the path along the river up to the road near the Quinsam River fish hatchery, we could see a few salmon making their way up stream to spawn.  We crossed over the road to follow the Tom Sawyer mountain bike trail. This trail rises quickly to a bluff overlooking the river, passes by some interesting mountain bike jumps and through a lovely mature forest.  On a fall weekday, we had this trail all to ourselves.  With the leaves still on the trees we only had peek-a-boo views of the river dramatically below us.  We hiked this as an out-and-back, stopping well short of the end of the Tom Sawyer trail at the logging road with the metal post , where we paused for lunch and then hikied back.  As we returned along the Quinsam River Nature Trail we had the treat of watching a very healthy black bear catch two large salmon and quickly eat them.  He was unfazed by the audience. 11.8 km; 4 hours.
Debbie
Thanks to Norris and Carrie for the photos

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Hiking – Quinsam River Trails – 13 Oct 2021

Trip Report – Mt. Elma – 8 Oct 2021

Every good plan … needs a Plan B … or two. The forecast for Wednesday was not looking good, so we moved the trip to Mt. Drabble to Friday. As we were driving south Friday in the rain and cloud, it was clear that the forecast was over-optimistic, and a long drive and a long hike to Mt. Drabble only to be in the clouds was not what we had in mind. So we decided to hike up Mt. Elma instead. Easier driving, easier hiking. That was the new plan.

As we were driving up to Mount Washington, we hit the snow line. It was clear yesterday, but it snowed last night. So what we thought was going to be a late summer trip was now an early winter trip. The trail and bushes were plastered with about 5 cm of wet snow. And it was raining, or maybe it was snowing, it was hard to tell. The hike on the snow covered boardwalks of Paradise Meadows to the Mt. Elma trailhead went quickly. Then the trail goes up steeply and there are a few places where it is quite steep. These were a bit slippery in the snow, but soon we were on to the summit ridge. Which is always very nice, no matter what the weather. It is a sloped meadow with sparse trees. And in our case the fog of being in the clouds. We hiked all the way to the end, where there is a super nice viewpoint. We couldn’t see anything, but it was still super nice. It was like a spring skiing day, without the sun, but still warm, as we ate lunch. Surprisingly, the whisky jack regulars were not there. There were a few quick moments with blue sky above us and when there was a slight gap in the clouds where we could see hints of the mountains around us. Impressive, but nothing that shows up on a photo. We figure we were just below the tops of the clouds. On the trip back down the ridge we watched a pair of grouse. The descent down the hill was harder than going up because now all the snow was melting making the trail very slippery. And the snow in the trees was melting and raining on us. Early spring. For variety, we hiked the rest of the lakes loop going back, and the trail along Helen Mackenzie Lake was wet. Very wet and muddy. When we were back on the boardwalks, they had less snow on them, but they were still slippery. But we made it back to the cars and declared it was a good, successful outing anyway. And we did get to see lots of very nice fall colours. Blueberry bushes instead of tree leaves. 14.0km; 420m elevation gain; 6 hours.

Norris

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Hiking – Mt. Elma – 28 July 2021