The Next Hike

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

Friday, September 28, 2012

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 29th September.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am

Last week we had a dull cloudy day for the hike and decided to check out an old logging road near Hydro East.  As we approached the highest point on the Hydro East road we found ourselves driving through dense fog with no view of the coastal mountains at all.  We only came out of the fog as we reached our parking place at the roadside gravel pits.  Hiking on the side road that leads up to the Vancouver Island Hydro line we eventually came to the start of the old logging road that shows on the map as climbing steadily higher until it joins the Anderson Bay Road at Bobs Lake.  It proved to be fairly slow going as there are branches and trees blocking progress that need to be cut or avoided.  The road bed is in good shape and maybe one day we will spend some more time clearing the way so we can reach the nice viewpoint that we visit sometimes by hiking down from Bobs Lake. 
My photo this week is of a curious caterpillar I photographed a few days ago in my garden.  I'm still working on the identification, but I believe it's a moth called White-blotched Heterocampa, Heterocampa umbrata.  Getting it right is difficult because these caterpillars can change their colour patterns as they grow and the variety of patterns and colours within each species is very great.  Whatever it proves to be it's certainly a curious creature.

    A moth caterpillar, perhaps the White-blotched Heterocampa. [Heterocampa umbrata] 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Next Hike.

The next hike will be on Saturday, 20th September.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we hiked to the top of Mt. Davies in unusually warm sunny weather for mid September.  My photo this week is one I took earlier in the month when we hiked along Thompson Road and up to a small shallow lake not far north-east of Thompson Bluffs.  In my experience this fairly level stretch of Thompson Road in this area has just the right conditions in the warmer months to see and photograph butterflies.  Sure enough, although it's getting late to be seeing many of these lovely but quite fragile insects, I did get a few shots of a fresh looking Pine White.  This species is locally common on Texada and most often seen at higher elevations.  The eggs are usually laid on the needles on the top branches of pine trees and the adults are mainly seen in mid to late summer.  Males and females have different wing markings with the males having white wings with sharply contrasting black blotches and veins.  The fresh looking male specimen in my photo is missing part of one wing which may have been grabbed by a bird hoping for a tasty treat.  

 Male Pine White feeding on a flower on the side of Thompson Road.        

Friday, September 14, 2012

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 15th September.
We meet at the Ballpark at Gillies Bay at 10:00am

Last week we drove up to Thompson Road and hiked south turning off on the side road that leads to Mystery Lake.  Before reaching the lake there is a fork in the road where we often strike off onto a narrow winding trail that climbs to the viewpoint on Thompson Bluffs.  This time, and to make a change we took the right fork which climbs steeply for a short distance and then ends in the forest.  Quite a few years ago we had visited a small lake in this area, but reached it from the south side by a different route than we were on this day.  From the road end we bush-wacked east and eventually reached a narrow bluff on the north side of the lake which made a pleasant spot for the lunch break.  On the earlier visit some of the hikers tried sitting on apparently solid logs for lunch, only to have them crack more than once. It seems  appropriate to name the tranquil spot Broken Logs Lake.
My photo was taken from the lunch spot and shows how shallow it is as water lily leaves dot almost the entire surface, and this common aquatic plant is restricted to quite shallow water. 

The shallow Broken Logs Lake a short distance east of Thompson Bluffs. The leaves dotting the surface are water lilies.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 8th September.
We meet at the Ballpark at Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we again had lovely weather for hiking and headed south past Bobs Lake to park on the gasline beyond Angel Lake.  Hiking south along the right of way took us quite soon to the start of the Twin Peaks Trail.  The pleasant temperature in the shade of the forest seemed to make the steep climb less hard work than usual. For lunch we chose the north viewpoint for a change and this is where I took my photo of the week with this rugged, dead and leafless tree framing the view over the Sabine Channel to Lasqueti and the Vancouver Island mountains in the far distance.  

The wind beaten ragged tree at the north viewpoint on Twin Peaks.