The Next Hike

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

Friday, June 24, 2011

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 25th June.

We meet at the Ballpark at Gillies Bay a 10:00am.

My photo was one I took earlier this month while hiking along Mouat Creek. Dragonflies are starting to become more abundant in early summer and I think this one was quite recently hatched from the aquatic nymph stage. It's not often we get to have such a closeup look at these highly active insects, but I think the photo shows rather well just how intricate are the colour patterns on the long abdomen. I'm fairly certain this is a female of the Darner group of dragonflies, but the actual species is harder to determine. My tentative ID is the very common California Darner.


A Darner Dragonfly, probably the quite common California Darner, Rhionaeschna californica

Friday, June 17, 2011

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 18th June.

We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am

On the Saturday hike last week we drove up over the top of the island, where we found ourselves in steady rain and with poor visibility, and continued down the Cook Bay Road in search of drier conditions. As we approached the gate that marks the start of the private land we were well below the cloud and beyond the rain shower so decided to hike from there. Taking the side road that ends at the cottage at the far south end of Shingle Beach and after chatting to the owner who was busy with repairs to his gate we eventually reached the pleasant grassy bluffs close to the water and had lunch there.

The abundant foxgloves that cover many recent logging areas and roadsides all over the island are well into their flowering season. They seem to have benefited from the extra rainfall this year and I was surprised to find one patch this week that had quite a number with the curious 'terminal flower' mutation. My photo is a closeup of one of these quite striking oddities.

The curious terminal flower on the top of a Foxglove spike.

To view older hike emails and photos go to: and then click on the tab "Texada Trekkers".


Friday, June 10, 2011

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 11th June.

We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we hiked to the top of Mount Manzanita. This is a peak that lies to the east of Bell Road and not very far north of the old Bell Farm site. The approach to the top is quite steep, but otherwise the route follows a pleasant forest trail and old logging roads with gentle grades. The view west from the top covers 180 degrees from Surprise Mt. in the north west right around to Mt Davies and Mt. Grant in the south east.

My photo is of a small common native plant in grassy areas, flowering in early summer and catching the eye with its bright little flowers. There are more than one species of violet on Texada, with the yellow and violet flowered species being the most common.

Violets in bloom at the top of Mount Manzanita.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Next hike.

The next hike will be on Saturday, 4th June.

We meet at the Ball Park in Gillies Bay at 10:00am

Here is a request for volunteers to help with an outdoor activity event planned for late August on Texada. Monica Garvin asked me to post this note:—

"Texada Island is holding it's very first Marathon / 1/2 Marathon on Sunday, August 28th. An event like this is a fantastic way to get people to come and visit our amazing Island! As with all amazing events it needs the help of volunteers to make it a success. Be a part of "Run the Rock Marathon and 1/2 Marathon" without even breaking a sweat!

Please email me back if you are interested. Please feel free to pass this on to anyone you think may like to help us out!"

On a recent hike we visited the beach along the section north from Sandbanks and, just as I had planned it, we were entertained by some Harbour Porpoises. Quite a few of these very small marine mammals have been spending most of the summer months along this part of our coastline for the last three years or so. There are two photos this week. The one of a tug boat with the back and dorsal fin of a porpoise in the foreground is my photo taken on that recent hike. The other was taken by someone at the Vancouver Aquarium and shows a young Harbour Porpoise that was rescued last month near Victoria. It proved to be very sick and did not survive, but the picture shows the small size of this species. I believe it's the smallest of the marine mammals and they are now listed as a "species at risk" and have been granted some degree of legal protection.


Harbour Porpoise at Cox Lagoon, Texada Island.

Rescued juvenile Harbour Popoise at Vancouver Aquarium in May, 2011.