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

Cultural Walk – Campbell River – 20 Oct 2021

Activity Urban / Cultural Walk
Destination Laichwiltach Family Life Society, Campbell River Museum, and Tyee Spit
Date 20 Oct. 2021, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Vic Gladish
Contact Info vicgladish@gmail.com; 250-285-2111; (cell 250-287-0459)
Description In Honour of Truth and Reconciliation Day (September 30) this will be an urban walking experience from Q-Cove to the Laichwiltach Family Life Society to experience “The Witness Blanket” (http://www.lfls.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/Witness-Blanket-Poster-LFLS-09.20.21.pdf ) and then to the Museum at Campbell River to see the Sacred Journey exhibit (https://crmuseum.ca/2021/01/04/sacred-journeys-exhibition/) to be immersed in the resurging Indigenous canoe culture.
From the museum we will proceed to an optional lunch stop at Crooked Spoon
Cafe OR bag lunch at Robert Ostler Park. Those that prefer a shorter day can take the next ferry home. Others are welcome to continue the urban experience and head out to the Tyee Spit trail (via the Wei Wai Kum gift shop/gallery, netloft and cemetery) and back to the ferry terminal.
Distance/time from Museum to Tyee Spit to Ferry is approximately 6.5 km/ 1.75 hours.
Meeting Place Quathiaski Cove Plaza Parking
Departure Time 8:30 for the 9:00 ferry on foot
Difficulty
Easy
Costs Museum – $7 for senior; Laichwiltach Society – by donation?;
Trip limits 12
Dogs? No
Notes: 1. For more on the Witness Blanket and its creator, Carey Newman, visit https://humanrights.ca/story/picking-up-the-pieces-the-making-of-the-witness-blanket
2. QIOC is booked for 10:00 am with an Elder/Survivor to introduce us to the Witness Blanket.
3. To respect our hosts and because some of this activity is inside and discretionary, participants need to be fully vaccinated and use a mask when indoors.

Hiking – Trout Creek Falls – 3 Nov 2021

Activity Hiking
Destination Trout Creek Falls
Date 3 Nov, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Debbie Quigg
Contact Info debbie.quigg@ualberta.ca; 250-285-3710.  Please contact the coordinator by Monday evening.
Description We will drive out Menzies Main a short distance to the trailhead for Trout Creek.  This undulating and varied trail passes by three falls, each very different and scenic.  The trail is basic and it may be a bit muddy.  There are a few steep sections, but it’s quite short.  About 5km; 2½ hours.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 10:00; drivers will need to be early to ensure that they can board
Difficulty
Moderate
Costs Ferry
Trip limits 10
Dogs?
Notes:

Hiking – Quinsam River Trails – 13 Oct 2021

Activity Hiking
Destination Quinsam River Trails
Date 13 Oct, 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 hiking and mountain bike trails.  This follows a variety of low and high bank along a picturesque river.  There will be some muddy sections and possibly trail damage from dirt bikes.  About 12.6km; 3½ hours.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 9:00; drivers will need to be early to ensure that they can board
Difficulty
Easy
Costs Ferry
Trip limits 10
Dogs? No
Notes:

Hiking – Mt. Drabble, Strathcona Park – 6 Oct 2021

This hike has been postponed until Friday, 8 Oct.  Stay in touch with the coordinator.

Activity Hiking
Destination Mt. Drabble, Strathcona Park
Date 8 Oct, Friday 6 Oct, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Norris Weimer
Contact Info norris.weimer@ualberta.ca; 250-285-3710.  Please contact the coordinator by Monday evening.
Description The approach to Mt. Drabble will be from a logging road off of Strathcona Parkway on the way to Mt. Washington.  The logging road drive is fairly long and slightly deteriorated since the Club last drove it, but still possible without 4×4.  We will walk the last steep part of the logging road and follow a cairned route up the mostly sub-alpine ridge to Mt. Drabble.  There is one major dip in the ridge before the summit, which offers great views of the Forbidden Plateau in good weather.  12.5 km; 6+ hours; 650m elevation gain.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 8:00 am ferry; drivers need to be early to ensure loading.
Difficulty
Moderate to challenging for the length of the day, elevation and altitude gain.
Costs Ferry
Trip limits
Dogs? No
Notes: This is a long day, now that the days are shorter than the nights.  Come prepared for mountain conditions.

Hiking – Paradise Meadows, Strathcona Park – 26 Aug 2021

Postponed due to weather.

Activity Hiking
Destination Paradise Meadows, Strathcona Park
Date 26 Aug, Thursday
Trip Coordinator Valerie van Veen
Contact Info 250 285 2329 vvv@qisland.ca
Description Anyone up for a hike in Strathcona Park this coming Thursday??? A moderate hike in Paradise Meadows , about 4-5 hours.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 8:00 am ferry
Difficulty
Moderate
Costs Ferry
Trip limits None, see Description above: must follow Club Covid rules while walking, must sit in groups of 6 max , distance as needed
Dogs? Must be on leash in the Park
Notes: A chance to get out in Strathcona. Leave on 8 am ferry, stop at Dave’s in Willow Point for a treat to take up the mountain. Bring Lunch, water.

Hiking – Mt. Elma, Strathcona Park – 28 July 2021

This trip has been postponed

 

Activity Hiking
Destination Mt. Elma, Strathcona Park
Date 28 July, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Norris Weimer
Contact Info norris.weimer@ualberta.ca or 3710; Please contact the coordinator by Monday evening.
Description We will hike from Raven Lodge up to Battleship Lake and continue on the Forbidden Plateau trail, passing Lady Lake.  The trail up Mt. Elma is not an official, maintained trail.   The Mt. Elma summit  is 1,420m and will have good views in all directions, weather permitting.  Approximately 13 km and 420 m elevation gain.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 8:00 ferry.
Difficulty
Moderate to challenging
Costs Ferry and fuel
Trip limits 10
Dogs? No
Notes: If you wish to car pool, please make your own arrangements in this COVID transition period.  This trip will only proceed in reasonable weather.  Rain or extreme heat will be avoided. Bring lunch and appropriate gear.

Trip Report – Strathcona Park-Ralph River – 15-18 June 2021

When the kayak trip to Bligh Island unraveled, the remnants of that trip booked into the Ralph River campground at the last minute.  This was not a carefully scripted trip; we mostly made it up as we went along.

Day 1 – After a late start and a ferry overload wait, we arrived at 3:00 at the campground, set up the tent amongst the amazing old growth trees in the Ralph River campground, and left to begin hiking at 4:00.  Given the time available, we explored some of the trailheads in that area: the Auger Point Traverse (steep), Shepherd Creek route (impressive canyon), Flower Ridge, and Price Creek (river views, then follows an old level road for a while).

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Day 2 – We hiked up the Buttle Bluffs and Park Main logging roads from the Western Mine road.  These are steep, gated roads surrounded by clear-cuts, but they provide excellent views and a rapid approach to higher elevation destinations.  The spring flowers were still quite good, the geology was fascinating, and there is an excellent water falls at 5 km.  The views of the Buttle Lake valley are really exceptional.  We continued about 7.5 km and 840 meters elevation gain, until we crossed a high point in the road and could see into the next valley surrounded by high mountains.

Day 3 –  We planned to kayak on Jim Mitchell Lake, but that didn’t work out because the condition of the Jim Mitchell Road changes from 2-wheel drive to 4-wheel drive at the Bedwell trailhead.  We didn’t have the right vehicles, so we walked up the road to see the Lake.  We returned part way down the road and then followed the Bedwell Trail out through a beautiful old forest to Thelwood Creek and the suspension bridge for lunch.  After lunch we drove just a bit further and walked the short approach to Lower Myra Falls.  This is always a beautiful falls, with great rock ledges and pools.  There was lots of water coming through the falls with the spring run-off.  The final short hike of the day was the Shepherd Creek loop, which leaves from the Ralph River bridge.  This short trail has a lot of variety with the river, some big trees, a mossy bluff, a wetland, and interesting saprophytes and fungus.  We still had time to explore the campground which is nestled in a beautiful forest between the Ralph River and Buttle Lake with lots of shoreline and views.  There were other folks from Quadra so the evenings were very social.

Day 4 –  We packed up the camping gear and drove to the Buttle Lake boat launch to kayak on the Lake.  We crossed to Rainbow Island in a freshening breeze.  At the moment it’s not an island because the water level in Buttle Lake is quite low.  We paddled to the south, sheltered side, explored a bit and had lunch.  There was a racing shell boat practicing in the lake.  After lunch we poked around some cliffs and an island to the south before returning to the boat launch.  Further exploration would be great, but more water and less wind would have been ideal.

This is an exceptionally beautiful area with access to amazing hiking at the Lake level or in the surrounding mountains.  The combination of the fjord-like lakes, the mature forests and the numerous mountains makes this a wonderful base for hiking and boating.

Debbie