The Next Hike

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

Friday, April 27, 2018

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 28th April.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we had near perfect hiking weather and drove along Bell Road as far as First Lake where we parked.  We headed south on the old logging road that passes along the west shoreline of Third Lake although the forest makes it hard to get a look at the lake unless you go down the short trail with a cairn at the start.  Not long ago we did a very good job of cleaning up the old hiking trail that runs from the end of the old logging road through the forest to the north end of Mystery Lake. Our plan was to find a route to get us up to a possible viewpoint on a bluff that overlooks the lake from the south and sure enough we found one that offered views of Mt. Davies, Plateau Mountain and Mt. Manzanita in the distance. 

My photo from a recent hike shows a feature we often see on bushes of Evergreen Huckleberry where a rust disease infection [Pucciniastrum geoppertianum] has caused the plant to form  a cluster of distorted stems called Witches Broom.

 Evergreen Huckleberry, Vaccinium ovatum - a branch with major rust infection. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 21st April.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week we felt it was safe to head for the highest parts of Texada as the days and nights had been a good deal warmer than before and the late snows had had plenty of time to melt.  We drove up to Bobs Lake area and parked close to the start of the Gentian Lake Trail, but walked east towards the campground entrance.  Our objective was to explore a route to the top of a small hill about a kilometre north of Bobs Lake as satellite images suggested we might find a good new viewpoint at or close to the top.  Sure enough we found a couple and we plan to go back again later in the year when the visibility is way better and the cool wind from the south-east a great deal much less uncomfortable!  The view is towards the east and the Coast Mountains and includes the Sunshine Coast with the Malaspina Strait 2,000ft below. 

My photo for this week is the second of the two tiny lakes we passed on the way to the mountain top.  Both have crystal clear water and on the way down we noticed the first one had quite a few jelly like egg masses that are very likely spawn of the rare Red-legged Frog.  

A small and pristine lake at high elevation not far from Bobs Lake.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 14th April.
We meet at the Ba;;park in Gillies Bay at 10:00am.

Last week when we met in the morning we all expected to be hiking in an unpleasant combination of wind and rain. That did not happen and we ended up having a nice enough forest hike that was a bit longer and steeper than usual and partly on a new route that we had cleared and flagged late last year. 

My photo this time is one I took last summer when we were hiking on bluffs not very far from Cook Bay.  It was on a hike in the same area the previous year that someone spotted this dainty little yellow daisy family gem.  I could not remember ever seeing it before this and sure enough although I searched both reference books and online sites I could not identify it.  Last year   on the day I took this photo we saw many specimens in flower in several different spots on the same bluffs and I later sent photos to a botanist who is an expert on this group of flowering plants, and he came up with the correct name.  It's actually a native of some eastern states including Virginia and has only been spotted in three locations on the west coast, near Campbell River, on Cortes Island and at Point Roberts near Vancouver. It's possible we have more of them on Texada than at any other location in Canada!

Dwarf Dandelion, Krigia virginica on bluffs west of Cook Bay.  This tiny plant is quite rare in BC although it can be found in several of the eastern states.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Next Hike

The next hike will be on Saturday, 7th April.
We meet at the Ballpark in Gillies Bay at 10:00am

Last week we started the hike from the Raven Bay turnoff on the High Road.  The route we followed started by going down the road to Raven Bay and then after crossing the creek without getting our feet wet we headed up the steep hill side along a very overgrown logging road until we reached a more modern logging road that comes in from the High Road on more level ground. After a few minutes walk we branched off on a side road on the left that ended not far above the beach close to some old mine workings called the "Lucky Lead" prospect. From there we continued on a new hiking trail that runs not far above the shoreline all the way back to Raven Bay.  Shortly before the end there are more mine workings, two tunnels and a connecting shaft, and this appears to be all that is left of the Raven Good Hope prospect. I don't think either were very lucky or good for the investors as neither appear to have produced any valuable ore

After crossing back over Rumbottle Creek we joined the non-hikers who were already tucking into the barbecued treats cooking over the campfire. This was the day for the annual Trekkers Beach Barbecue and Potluck at Raven Bay and the weather was exceptionally good for a change.  Special thanks go to David Taylor and Russ Sparks for the planning and preparations that go into making sure everyone has a good time.

A tricky crossing of Rumbottle Creek at Raven Bay.