We did not have the best start for our travels on Vancouver Island as it was a long weekend holiday and Canadians love to go camping - which is a good thing, of course, but made it hard to find any available campsites at all. Finally we found a place at an overflow camping at Sproat Lake Provincial Park. It is also in this area that you can find the biggest trees on the island, at Cathedral Grove.
Walking in between them is amazing! The tallest is more than 75 meters tall, and the trunk is almost three meters in diameter. Quite different from the arctic spruce… (and any Norwegian trees…).
Next day was spent in Tofino, which was packed with people. Long weekend strikes again… From Tofino we decided to try a gravel road going to Bamfield a little bit further south, also on the coast. Here we found a road that took us to Pachena Bay. Here we could camp on the beach, and the best of all was that they had a camp site available for us. After travelling inland and in the Arctic for a loooong time it was great to spend a day at the beach. The weather was not the best as there was some strange local fog, but when laying low on the beach the temperature was perfect to read a book.
From Pachena Bay we tried out some logging roads to find our way to Cowichan Lake. Our map was not the best and we would recommend the back country map book if you want to try out more logging roads on Vancouver Island. We had to turn around once (that cost us an hour) because we were stopped by some active logging and the road was closed.
Luckily we only meet one logging truck and that was on a wide part of the road. We managed to find our way to Cowichan Lake, but we wanted to continue and that night we ended up at Jordan River at Juan De Fuca Strait.
Steve, who is a pilot I worked with in Patriot Hills, Antarctica, was going camping with some friends on Salt Spring Island for two days and we were invited to join them. Salt Spring Island is a beautiful place with many artists and local producers of vine, vegetables, cheese and bread. On Saturday we went to the farmers marked in Ganges which had a great selection of it all.
One day we bought fresh crab from a local fisher and we cooked it at our camp at the ocean side, drinking white wine and eating a great crab dinner.
Luxury camping. Thanks to Steve, Kristy, Laura and Andrew for a great camping trip in Ruckle Provincial Park.