Tuesday, October 5, 2021

West Coast Travels: Day 2 - Hiking, hiking, hiking

As we slowly get over our jet lag we are waking up very early each morning. While this does mean we are able to get an early start to the day we also are pretty tired by the time 8:00 pm rolls around.

With our first full day on the island the plan was to tackle several hikes along the Pacific Marine Circle Route. Our AirBnb is very close to the Juan de Fuca provincial park which stretches all the way to Port Renfrew. Also, since it is October in the Pacific Northwest we of course were greeted with rain on our first day too. 

Our first stop was Sombrio Beach. Sombrio Beach is about half way along the Juan de Fuca marine trail and is only about a 250 m walk from the trailhead to the beach. Once on the beach we were greeted with large cobbled stones plus a few hikers setting up camp. We ventured further east along the beach in search of a secret waterfall. This waterfall is hidden at the end of a small creek inside a mossy green gorge. It took a while to finally get there but the experience was worth it in the end.

We hopped back in the car and continued along the Pacific Marine Circle Route towards Port Renfrew. We then continued past Port Renfrew into the hillside along Gordon River in search of Avatar Grove. Avatar Grove was saved from logging by the Ancient Forest Alliance in 2012. Some of Canada’s oldest and tallest trees can be found in this grove. By the time we arrived the rain had started again but that didn’t stop us from venturing into the forest. There is both an upper and lower grove and both were spectacularly beautiful. This was the main reason I even planned this entire leg of our travels so was very happy to be able to visit and appreciate this forest.

By now we were a little wet and also starting to get tired and hungry. We headed back to Port Renfrew, picked up some snacks from the only grocery store and then drove back to our cabin. We had planned to also check out Botanical Beach in order to check out it tide pools but in the end we decided no one had the energy to do so.

Safe and sound back in the cabin we fired up the wood burning stove to warm up and then started dinner. We also were greeted by “Daisy”, the owner’s dog who visits us every day for lots of belly rubs.

More hiking tomorrow!

Sombrio Beach

The hidden waterfall

Avatar Grove

The sun came out briefly

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