The Next Hike

Check here every week for details on the next Trekker hike!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 15th July.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we drove to Blubber Bay and parked on the left of the main road at the gate for the gasline pumping station road. We walked north to see the pipeline facilities where the company inserts and retrieves the pipeline inspection pigs, and then on to visit Glass Beach and a nearby eagle nest.  From there we took the short trail through the woods to the cottages at Clam Bay and then back to the main road again.  We headed through the quarry and down to the beach access where the BC Cemnet Rd ends at the gate where the road to Grilse Pt. starts. As a brief side visit to a local point of interest that some of us had never seen before we were guided through some trees behind an old house foundation to find the massive concrete structure in my photo.  This was a concrete water tower built by BC Cement Co. to serve the houses of it's employees who worked in the limstone quarries along the shoreline as well as at the crushing plant and loading dock close by.   BC Cement was the company that operated the big Bamberton Quarry and cement manufacturing plant near Victoria for many years and the Texada operation was set up to supply extra crushed limestone from Texada.

In the afternoon we walked out to Grilse Pt. and visited with the seals that always seem to hang out in the same place at the end of a short trail that passes the site of the local radio transmitter in the last quarry on the right.  

Concrete water tower at BC Cement townsite, Blubber Bay.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Next hike from Van Anda, again!

The next hike will be on Saturday, 8th July.
We meet at the Canadian Legion in Van Anda at 10:00am.

Last week we drove from Van Anda towards Blubber Bay and parked on the curve of the road at the top of the last hill before the road reaches the ferry dock. A gravel road there crosses the gas line and soon reaches a locked steel gate. Just past the gate an old trail heads down to the beach at the south end of Linekiln Bay.  We could have followed the trail along the top of the low cliff, but the tide was low enough to walk on the rocks instead. After crossing a small beach the trail continues around the hammer shaped headland of Marshall Point.  This is an especially attractive stretch of coastline with seals on the rocks and interesting wild flowers and rare species of Juniper trees along the shore. We lunched on the beach facing Crescent Bay and returned to Van Anda with plenty of time to visit the Texada Museum where a new mine exhibit had just been opened to the public in the morning.

A curious rotten tree stump near Russ Creek.      

Friday, June 30, 2017

Next Hike will be from Van Anda again.

The next hike will be on Saturday, 1st July.
We meet at the parking at the Canadian Legion in Van Anda at 10:00am.

Last week we drove Crescent Bay Rd to Woodwardia and hiked on trails to the south of Favada Point, had lunch on a bluff above Davis Bay and visited a beautiful beaver pond near the old Fox Farm.  We saw the flowers of our native cactus and Harvest Brodeia on a dry bluff and on the warmest day of the year so far we appreciated the shade of the forest for much of the hike.

My photo is another picture from the Northeast Bay area where the new trails along Russ Creek give us a chance to experience the varied features of a creek dropping several hundred feet down a hillside covered in dense forest.

The Russ Creek trails are steep in some places, but the waterfalls and rapids are impressive.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Next Hike from Van Anda.

The next hike will be on Saturday, 24th June.
We meet in the parking lot at the Canadian Legion in Van Anda at 10:00am.

Last week when I was walking to the Ballpark I seem to remember seeing there was some low cloud on the high ground so it was best to hike on a low elevation trail. As some of the newer hikers had not had a chance to hike along the shoreline north from Shingle Beach that was what we decided to do. We started from Yew Tree Bay with it's fine Arbutus and Yews and headed north towards Secret Beach. The trail was in good condition having dried out well after so many recent rainy days and we made good progress before stopping for lunch on a clifftop bluff close to where some Pigeon Guillemot sea birds were nesting. After lunch and as we approached Secret Beach and the mouth of Stromberg Creek we were very surprised to hear very loud music up ahead and found ourselves walking among tents and then past the audio system which was part of a small scale music festival.

My photo shows a cluster of flowers of a fairly uncommon wild flower that seems to prefer dry seaside bluffs. Hooker's Onion has a few short thin leaves very early in the spring and then only produces flowers in the summer when the leaves have dried up. In BC it's pretty much limited to the south east side of Vancouver Island and a few locations in the Coast Mountains inland from Vancouver.


Friday, June 16, 2017

Next Hike.

The next hike will be on Saturday, 17th June.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am
Last week we had some recently cut trails to experience not far from Northeast Point on the eastern coastline of the island. To reach the area we drove down to Pocahontas Bay and then south along  the old Pocahontas Main and off on the new road into the very large clearcut we have visited a couple of times earlier in the year.  Russ Creek is a fair sized stream for Texada that flows north into Northeast Bay.  The lower part of the creek runs down quite steeply in places and is shaded on both sides by forest that has hardly been touched by logging in recent years.In the morning we hiked uphill along the wet bank trail and then after lunch we had another new trail to take us back to the strating point, this time on the east bank. 
It's hard to get good photos that capture the great beauty of this part of Texada because the forest is dark and the tree trunks and undergrowth often hide the creek from view. You really have to be there to appreciate the natural beauty of the place.  In one section a very narrow and steep-sided ravine cuts down through bedrock and in other sections there are rapids and waterfalls and the noise the water is making carries for quite a distance. Where the slope becomes much less steep the creek is broad and shallow and the forest peaceful.  My photo is in a brighter spot where fallen trees allow more sun to reach the forest floor and where the creek plunges over a low cliff and enters a section where the water moves much more slowly.

Russ Creek - a natural water slide and waterfall with Maidenhair Ferns.

Friday, June 9, 2017

The next hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 10th June.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay 

Last week we once again headed south along the coast and parked at the Cook Bay gate with the weather sunny and dry and certainly very pleasant for hiking.  This time our plan was to explore some of the bluffs nearer to Cook Bay community that we had not visited on earlier hikes in this area.  This time we had a new approach route down an old logging road we had not used before and this took us quite quickly to a spot where it was easy to access a bluff with quite a good view not all that high above the shoreline.  We decided to climb higher exploring the new territory in search of a good view point and suitable spot for lunch.  We found a good one and then after lunch continued towards the west until we reached our main trail that was well flagged and the best way to reach the main trail to the beach and complete a circular route.  

My photo was taken on our recent hike to the pocket beach near Eagle Creek.  June is the month when the rocky cliffs along our shoreline have lovely masses of the bright yellow monkey flowers growing usually in damp spots with a little decent soil and full sun exposure.

A colourful mass of Monkey Flower or Mimulus near Eagle Beach. 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 3rd June.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we drove just a very short distance and parked a little way up the hill after the bridge over Mouat Creek on the road to Davie Bay.  An old logging road took us south through replanted clearcut and forest and it was interesting to see how well some Giant Sequoia trees were doing in one area that had been planted with mixed conifers including Red Cedar, Sitka Spruce and and Douglas Fir.  Our chosen lunch spot was a small pocket beach where we sat on low rocks beside a very calm sea.  The tide was exceptionally low that day and we found some especially interesting tidepools that would normally be under the sea.

The low tide allowed us to walk past steep cliffs and along the beach to where Eagle Creek emerges from the forest and splashes down onto brilliant green seaweed.  Warm smooth rocks beside the falls made it a perfect spot to just linger for a while.

    The lovely little waterfall at the mouth of Eagle Creek.  At high tide the sea refreshes small tide pools just out of the picture on the right.