Friday, November 06, 2009

To Port Hardy and a wet Cape Scott hike

We've settled into Port Hardy, BC. The Northernmost town on Vancouver Island: just 310 miles from Alaska.

We took advantage of the intermittant weather to clean out the bilge of 26 years of goo. We also found a fuel hose that had rattled loose and leaked diesel in large quantities into the bilge. Glad to have THAT gone. Imagine the stuff in the grease trap in a long abandoned drive-in theatre cafe, and you get the idea. Rather like a liposuction.

They'res a great trail to walk Chance, and all the amenities for our month here. When the skiing opens up, we may move the boat, but right know we're pretty well set up.

Nice little campgrounds by the river. Wish you were here...

They recently had an invasion of dead and dying Humboldt squid in the harbors at full moon. Not surprisingly, the most popular news article for a while was a recipe for Calamari El Nino. Blain grabbed one of these 20 lb monsters of the deep and we feasted on calamari for three days.

He's trying to figure out how to freeze some. It's really delicious stuff. We'll post a photo if they come in again.


One rainy day we drove to Cape Scott Provincial Park for some exercise in the rain. Along the way we found the shoe tree.

If you look carefully you can spot the ballet slipper. Seems these tough lumberjacks aren't all flannel and lugged boots all the time.

A few other reminders along the way to keep your slippers on.

Cape Scott was really rainy. We hiked out to San Josef Bay, an old settlement by Danish migrants in the early 1900s. Unfortunately, another settlement failure. Canada had a "homestead" act of their own to encourage settlement, but many of the villages failed along the coast for a number of regions. The storm had really blown up the surf in the bay. Fun beachcoming but the tide was in, so we couldn't go around the corner to check for glass fishing floats.

Huge trees to hide lunch from the rain.

The trail to Cape Scott was a little more rugged. 30km later and we could have hiked the whole North Coast trail. It ends at saltwater, so you have to call a water taxi. Apparently over 8000 people a year do this trail. Very impressive.

A huge fallen cedar. Why cut it out? Just chop some steps in it.

Hand over hand in a few places. They don't recommend dogs, though Chance loved it.

We'll be back. It's a gorgeous hike.

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