Day Five: Kelp Forest

August 8, 2017

We’ve been so lucky this trip. Apparently the driest it’s been in 190 years. Optimal conditions for hiking I’d say. Despite this, we were weary from the last three days of the trek. For a little boost of energy, Fi blasted some tunes and we had a mini dance party to get the energy pumping….

With the bass drumming to the rhythm of our heartbeat, we continued onwards.

IMG_9035Before we knew it, it felt like we had walked onto another planet. We stood by the ocean and watched the waves crash onto the bedrock. Little pockets between and within the rock were filled with life – sea anemone, violet-coloured urchins, bright orange starfish, crabs, mussels, and sea snails.

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The bedrock had surge channels where the water made its mark, and clams made it their home.

The waves came up to stroke the kelp forest above the bedrock as if it was brushing it’s hair.

IMG_8975  Along the other side was a family of sea birds, looming over the beach in a stance that showed all who passed whose territory it was.

A couple hours later, through beach and forest trail, we arrived at Nitinant Lake crossing welcomed by dragon flies and lily pad ponds. At the edge of the lake was a little restaurant. It had fresh salmon and crab available served with a baked potato and margarine.

The place appeared to be family owned by the native indigenous tribes. Little boys with freezies in their hands ran around their big backyard playing with sticks, stones and their imagination – just as children should. We overheard the server tell a group of hikers who ordered crab, to keep the shell separate from all other foods as they are to return back to the lake and the grease from other foods will leave a film on the lake that would stick around for years. A sign hung on the wall “Do not feed or take the dog please”. just then, a beautiful and strong chocolate lab roamed by the little bridge crossing. The lake was gleaming with a dark emerald green and white headed eagles flew above while schools of small fishes swam below.

After a satisfying lunch, we took the ferry crossing with the dog and the chief. A couple minutes over we were on the other side, and from then on, we took the inland trail – . It took a route next to the cliff, often opening up to the view of the Pacific Ocean shoreline where we saw two deers, resting on the open area of the beach.

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Oh deer, what a beautiful sight!

We continued onwards as to what felt like the longest day, with pains in the knees and ankles from the weight on the shoulders and the ups and downs of the terrain we trekked through. We finally arrived at our campsite: Tsusiat Falls.

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Mist covered the shore, the falls were beautiful – small but moving. We bathed in the cold water hole below the falls and started a campfire. Dinner was a mushroom and kale risotto (see: Kale-in it Risotto for recipe), it definitely warmed the soul after the many kilometres of walking we did.

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The campsite was busy, tents of different colours propped up against the sand and between longs. Along the shoreline, seagulls flew and crows gawked. Small little smokes streamed upwards reaching towards the sky as the sun set behind the trees… As I said, it was a popular camp site. There was only one bear bin and the bold and mighty mice were out to hunt. A true adventure it was! By the time we finished all the snacking, the bear bin was full and we had to hang our food out on a tree – the “PCT” method. Limited in dry sacs, we used the sleeping bag cover and tied the rain cover over top and taped it down with Gorilla-tape. The night has fallen and we zipped up our tents and crawled into our sleeping bags to call it a night hoping the mice would stay away and that our food would still be there tomorrow…

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