Trip Report – Forbidden Plateau – 21 Sept 2022

Four enthusiastic hikers enjoyed an absolutely perfect Fall Equinox Day as we hiked in Paradise Meadows/Forbidden Plateau. Our ultimate destination was Kwai Lake, via the circle route through Paradise Meadows and past Lake Helen Mackenzie. Taking the 8 am ferry, we were on the trail by 9:20 am.

We enjoyed a pleasant break at Lake Helen Mackenzie with stunningly beautiful reflections of the surrounding hills.  Debbie had wisely suggested we go counter-clockwise, as we always seem to go clockwise when hiking in this area. Even though this meant going uphill on the dreaded “Helen Mackenzie headwall”, it was still better than stumbling down the steep, rooty, eroded trail at the end of a long hike.

We were not the only ones enjoying the early autumn sunshine, as the number of cars in the parking lot attested. We encountered several backpackers on their way out, two school groups camping in the backcountry group camps, and many day-hikers like ourselves.  At Kwai Lake we found a quiet grassy area on the southwest shore for lunch, away from a large school group taking their break on the rocky outcropping on the opposite shore.  After lunch, we completed the circle, passing Croteau, Lady, Kooso and Battleship Lakes. Some sections of this circle route are boardwalk, protecting wetlands and tree roots, the rest varies from pleasant forest paths to very eroded, rooty trails.  About 6½ hours, approximately 17 km.

Valerie van Veen

Thanks to Valerie and Norris for the photos

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Strathcona Park – 21 Sept 2022

Hiking – Strathcona Park – 21 Sept 2021

Activity Hiking
Destination Strathcona Park
Date 21 Sept, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Valerie Van Veen
Contact Info 250 285 2329
Description Celebrate the fall equinox on the beautiful Forbidden Plateau, Strathcona Park. Starting from Raven Lodge we will aim for Kwai Lake following well-established trails. A full day – about 20 km return. Maybe a group dinner in CR? Weather dependent.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal to arrange carpools as desired
Departure Time 8:00 am ferry
Moderate to challenging due to length
Costs Ferry
Trip limits 10
Dogs? Must be on leash in the Park
Notes: This trip is weather dependent. Must contact coordinator by Monday evening, Sept. 19.

Reconnaissance Report – Victoria Peak Ridge – 20 Aug 2022

We did this hike on impulse after the destination we had wanted was unavailable due to a locked gate on a logging road.  From Quadra it’s quite long as a day trip.  The drive from Campbell River was nearly 6 hours round trip.  And it was a very hot day.  Normally this is a route for climbers on their way to Victoria Peak, but we were after a hike to the sub-alpine with good views.  Forty-eight kilometres out from Sayward, we turned onto W79, which is signed as the road to Victoria Peak. This road is in decent condition and winds its way up fairly steeply.  There were 16 cross ditches, none of which were impossible, but it was very slow going.  After a while we decided to walk, but we could have driven another 2½ kilometres.  From the trailhead to the ridge it’s short, but quite steep.  A typical climbing access route, the path to the ridge rises 213 m over 713 m, for about a 30% incline.

Wandering along the sub-alpine ridge is very pleasant.  It continues up for a bit more than a kilometre until the ridge is quite level and more distant views are revealed.  There was significant heat haze, making it tricky to see Quadra from the ridge and there was forest fire smoke to the west from lightening strikes the night before in the Nimpkish Valley.

After lunch and a bit of exploring on the ridge, we headed back down, going quite slowly in the heat.  ( 8.6 km; 658 m elevation gain)  Once back on the logging road toward Sayward, we stopped at the White River Provincial Park to walk through the old growth grove to the White River.


(click on photos to enlarge)

Trip Report – Mt. Drabble – 12 Aug 2022

Five of us hiked to the top of  Mt. Drabble (1,363 m).  We caught an early ferry and drove to the turn off near Ramparts Hill chain-up area on the way to Mt. Washington.  That gives access to the Murex Main logging road (no signs) which was in good condition.  We met a wide-track excavator working on the road and ditches, who kindly moved to the side to let us by.  We parked where the road starts to get really steep and eroded.  Theoretically you could drive 1.9 km further (and 210 m elevation gain) to the trailhead, but we walked.  The trail is well established, with flagging, reflectors and cairns.  It ascends the rocky, sub-alpine ridge and passes a number of ponds.  Lovely to look at, but not appealing for swimming.

The views of the Strathcona Park mountains were great.  There are also views back over Georgia Strait/Salish Sea; we could make out Quadra in the haze.  We reached the summit by 11:00 and stopped for lunch.  Brent set up his radio and antenna and made a contact.  It’s a very enjoyable hike over this long, undulating ridge.  The hardest part was walking down the steep logging road with loose gravel.  Altogether it was 11.7 km, 5½ hours, 450 m elevation gain (from bottom to top), but more overall with the undulations.


(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Mt. Drabble – 12 Aug 2022

Hiking – Mt. Drabble, Strathcona Park – 10 Aug 2022

Re-scheduled to Friday, Aug 12th, with an earlier start time.

Activity Hiking
Destination Mt. Drabble, Strathcona Park
Date 12 10 Aug, Friday Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Norris Weimer
Contact Info; 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 7:05 8:00 am ferry; drivers need to be early to ensure loading.
Challenging for the length of the day, elevation and altitude gain.
Costs Ferry, shared fuel costs.
Trip limits
Dogs? No
Notes: We will not do this trip in poor weather.  This is a long day.  Come prepared for mountain conditions.

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

Thanks to Norris, Diana and Val for the photos

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Ripple Rock Trail – 8 June 2022

Hiking – Ripple Rock – 8 June 2022

Activity Hiking
Destinatio Ripple Rock Trail, Campbell River
Date 8 June Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Diana McKerracher
Contact Info
Description Ripple Rock Trail starts 16 km north of Campbell River. It is a moderate hike of just over 9 km, taking 4 to 4.5 hours return. There are several metal bridges, and a 47-step staircase near the top.
Meeting Place QCove ferry line up
Departure Time 9:00 ferry
Costs Ferry and gas
Trip limits 10
Dogs? No
Notes: Please let me know on Monday, June 6 if you plan to come on this hike. We can carpool to save on ferry and gas costs, but only if we know ahead of time who is going. If it looks like ferry overloads are going to be a huge issue, we will propose a different hike here on Quadra. Bring a lunch and dress for the weather.

Trip Report – Trout Creek Falls Trail – 30 Mar 2022

Seven of us had a great day to hike up the trail along Mohun Creek and view the three Trout Falls.  The first falls is very near the trailhead on Menzies Main and was immediately rewarding.  There was lots of water flow with the wet spring we have been having.  We then followed the undulating forest trail to the middle falls, with the biggest height drop of the three.  The trail was in good condition and most winter windfall had been cleared.  We followed the short, steep section of trail to the top of the falls and continued to the third falls into the crack.  We stopped for lunch on a mossy bluff above the last falls, enjoying the view and gentle sunshine.  

The group decided it preferred a loop rather than returning along the creek, so we followed a good trail along the creek continuing upstream until it veered to join the Mary Lake logging road. This was an easy downhill ramble and we stopped to visit Mary Lake along the way.  The lake was lovely and quiet, but it is clearly heavily used at times.  We closed the loop with a short, undisturbed walk on Menzies Main and arrived at the vehicles just before a rain shower.  These are some of the most impressive falls in the Campbell River area and the trail is in good condition and well used.  It was a lovely spring outing.  (7.3 km; 3¼ hours)

Thanks to Carrie and Norris for the photos

(click on photos to enlarge)

Hiking – Trout Creek Falls – 30 Mar 2022

Trip Report – Mt. Washington – 16 Mar 2022

Our small group enjoyed a beautiful spring day at Mt. Washington.  It was not crowded in spite of Spring Break.  There was fresh snow on a crusty base for the snowshoe trails.  We crossed Paradise Meadows and climbed the well used trail up to Battleship Lake where we had sun, cloud and snow showers.  The lake was lovely, but a bit breezy and we sheltered on an island for lunch.  The light and silence at the lakes were wonderful.  We traversed Battleship Lake over consolidated snow so that we could easily take any route we wished.  We followed a rise through the forest over to Lake Helen MacKenzie and followed the lake to the mid-point.  We then more or less followed the summer trail back to Paradise Meadows. We stopped in the uncrowded Raven Lodge for a snack before heading home.  7.4 km, 3¼ hours.

(click on photos to enlarge)

Snow – Mt. Washington – 16 Mar 2022

Snow – Mt. Washington – 16 Mar 2022

Activity Snow shoeing
Destination Mt. Washington area
Date 16 Mar, Wednesday
Trip Coordinator Debbie Quigg
Contact Info or 3710.  Please contact the coordinator by Monday night.
Description Snowshoe or cross-country ski at the Mt Washington area, depending on the group and interests.  We might snowshoe up to the Lakes, as we have not done that yet this year.  We expect recent snow and temperatures near freezing.
Meeting Place QCove ferry terminal
Departure Time 9:00 ferry.  Drivers need to be early to board.
Moderate, depending on choices and conditions.
Costs Ferry, fuel (!!!) and likely a Mt Washington snow shoe trail pass at $12
Trip limits None
Dogs? No
Notes: We will not go if rain is forecast at 1,000m.  Bring lunch and gear appropriate for the weather.