A Coastal Summer: Part 1 – The West Coast Trail and A Fear of Heights

This past summer I had the wonderful opportunity of traveling to the East and West coasts of Canada! K and I went to British Columbia in May and I went to Nova Scotia in August solo for a conference. Both trips were so great they deserve their own post. In this post, I’m going to cover the British Columbia trip.

Kevin had a conference in BC and I had never been so he told me to come. At this point we hadn’t known each other that long, but he knew I loved camping and hiking. In hindsight (because he keeps bringing it up), I probably should have told him that I am pretty afraid of heights. I guess I see how this may have been a surprising thing to find out half way up a mountain, considering my love of rock climbing… Anyways, we climbed (almost 😉 ) to the top of Mount Finlayson (which is only about 400 m high. compare that to El Capitan which is around 2300 m high.).

The next few days we spent hiking the West Coast trail. For those of you who are unfamiliar, the trail goes along the coast line and switches between beach trails and higher altitude, forested trails. These aren’t gradual inclines, ladders are scattered throughout the trail so that you can get up and down. Steep, high ladders… Needless to say, Kev experienced my anxiety towards heights several times on this trail. The trail and the ladders are all very well maintained. Along the coast there were hundreds of tiny crabs hanging out in the tide pools. Our first camp stop was right next to a gorgeous waterfall that doubled as the coldest shower I have ever taken. On the last day of the trail we got to see one of the last wooden lighthouses left in Canada, and a rock that was full of sea lions.

We had great weather (although it was cold and we did have to wear all of our clothes for the whole trail and at night). This trail is known to be a wet trail and we have some very budget gear but we didn’t get wet the whole trip. Speaking of gear, we got most of it for really great prices off of amazon and they were perfect for this trip, even though we were ridiculed by my mother for our tiny bowls.

We ended up finishing the trail a day early, so we went camping at a car camping site near the Juan de Fuca trail. (And we had all of the s’mores!!!).

On the last night, Kev arranged for us to stay in an Inn with a mountain view and a hot tub. There was a restaurant in the Inn that made us some of the best food ever. This was the perfect place to end a hiking trip.

And on our last night, after all the camping and hiking, it started to rain.

– b


p.s. other highlights from the trip:

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