A Travellerspoint blog

Tofino

Juice and a Sandwich

all seasons in one day 24 °C
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We left for Tofino from Vancouver taking a scenic 1.5 hour journey across the Georgia Straight to Nanaimo. There we fantastic views of the bay to be had from the deck of the ferry. After this on the way up to Tofino we visted Little Qualicum Falls taking in a short Hike to these waterfalls in a Provincial Park. Next stop was Sproat Lake where there was an opportunity to see some Petroglyph's carved into the rocks lining the Lake however to see these you have to walk out onto some floating platforms unfortunately I don't think they were designed to hold 18 people and promptly began to sink! The last stop of the day before hitting Tofino was Long Beach at the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, this is a beautiful part of the coast line.

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Upon arrival in Tofino we book our activities for the following day and then checked into one of the nicest hostels in the world, Whalers on the Point which overlooked the bay. Tofino is a pretty fishing village at the tip of Esowista Peninsula near the entrance to Clayoquot Sound on the west coast of Vancouver Island.

After 3 huge slices of Pizza and a few beers we all headed down to the beach for a fire and chat. There were about 18 of us sat round chatting and some beach dudes with guitars and a violin joined us to provide entertainment. It turned out to not just musical entertainment though as later on a police officer came over to check if anyone was drinking and targeted this one remaining guy (his mates had gone by this point) he was told by the cop that if he drank the beer he had in his hand he'd be arrested and fine $150 but before he could responded the cop ripped his beer from him and tipped it out most of it on the guys head. This didn't help the guys mood and he promptly began abusing the cop at this point Nolan, our Moose driver, stood up and announced that we weren't with this guy. It became a bit of a comedy act now as the guy then started demanding juice and a sandwich if he was being arrested he was adamant that he was getting his juice and sandwich and just kept repeating it over and over and sat of the floor in protest so the cop just maced the guy and dragged him over the log he was previously sat on at the same time saying "Lets go Juice and a sandwich". The cops seem to have the same approach as the Yanks when it comes to dealing with things, they don't mess around, as he was leaving dragging the guy behind him he turned and said, "be sure to clean up after yourselves now" and everyone was like yes Sir Officer Sir!

The following day 6 of us, Me, Ian, Mark, Matt, Gill and Debbie went Sea Kayaking which was cool as I've never done it before. We spent about 30 minutes being briefed on the safety and operation on the kayaks, they were two man ones and had rudders at the back controlled by the person in the rear using foot pedals. I teamed up with Mark and I didn't fancy doing the whole steering and paddling thing so let him go in the back. It was a really good day, we kayaked around the small islands sticking close to the coasts. The guides we had were really good and they showed us star fish and little crabs that live in the huge sea weed plants, these plants were massive and have really thick stems with tennis ball size bulbs which had the sea weed part growing out of it and this is where the crabs lived. You can eat this sea weed straight out of the water it's apparently packed with iron. Matt tried to pick up some sea weed to eat it and ended up grabbing a crab which didn't take kindly to being grabbed and nipped him. After a long day out in the Kayaks some of us headed off to the Sauna we had in our hostel which was very relaxing. Nolan cooked everyone spag bol which was delicious and after a free massage of Debbie I was done for the day as soon as my head hit the pillow I was asleep!

Posted by ride165 12:53 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Vancouver

BC = British Climate

semi-overcast 25 °C
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I arrived in Vancouver quite late as the flight was delayed by about 30 mins due to a faulty instrument then later just to scare the crap out of everyone as we came into land the pilot suddenly went full throttle and pulled up apparently there was debris on the runway so on the 2nd attempt I was a little worried as there were all mechanical noises going on, I'd convinced myself that the landing gear wasn't coming down properly! To add to this during the flight I was sat next to this crazy woman who insisted on talking to me even though I had my iPod on and was reading a book.

The following day I had a wander round and visted Granville Island which has a fantastic market full of lots of tasty food. The evening was spent having a few beers and some Mexican food with Ian who is also on the Moose tour tomorrow.

Posted by ride165 23:56 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Randomness

The end of Moose Tour East

sunny 35 °C
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So my Eastern portion of the Moose tour is over and it's been great fun, I've met some great people and some strange ones. I've made good friends with Liam the chef , Amanda (aka chunky munky), Shanna the nurse, Jacquline the police officer, Andy who gets the best beer goggles when drunk and goes into a deep cocky accent so much so I had to translate for Liam. Jock the human dustbin who ate 11 pancakes for breakfast and only stopped there because they ran out! Kirsty the webbed footed Aussie farmer girl (who is lovely despite that description) and Max the german who for his sins was a great lad with his German efficiency and Mike bashing! "Mike dont move the bus, you make the animals run away!!!" LOL!

The freaks consisted of Herman the German with his Lara Croft leg bag which I'm sure he wore everywhere including to bed and in the shower! And shout out to stinky aka Timmy, Gimp, Forrest Gimp, Smelly Cat, Laffin (laughing) boy! no one has ever smelled so bad....the whole bus stank and this guy would take photos of us with the most massive lens without our permission, he's a freak!

Posted by ride165 12:43 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Niagara Falls

Think Blackpool

sunny 40 °C
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Today I went to Niagra falls, on the way we stopped at the whirlpool rapids which is a class 6 rapid and is illegal to navigate normally rapids are classed only from 1 to 4. The whirlpool is created due to the river going around a 90 degree bend which as eroded away the earth making a kind of swirling reservoir.

We also visited a winery as there are many in the area here we sampled some white, red and Ice wine which was a first for me, it's very sweet.

Once we arrived by the Falls you could smell the moisture in the air from the spray being generated by the sheer power of the water. As it was 40 degrees today we headed straight to the edge where all the spray was coming over it was so nice! The falls are very very impressive and the photos don't really do it justice.

We all took a ride on the Maid in the Mist boat to get right up close to the falls, we were given ponchos but didn't wear them due to the heat. I enjoyed the soaking as much as the view of the falls.

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Later we did the journey behind the falls which is a series of tunnels which takes you, yes you guessed it, behind the falls where there are openings to see and feel the power of the falls. The pressure changes are amazing and it kind of puts you off balance a little. After this we headed into the streets to find some food and to say it was tacky is an under statement, just think Blackpool and your got the picture.

Posted by ride165 09:30 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Madawaska

Madawhere?

sunny 37 °C
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Next stop Madawaska for 2 nights, this was a cool Hostel, well it was a big house, and apparently haunted by the previous owner an old lady that died there. We arrived quite late due to not leaving Fort Coulonge until 7pm so it was a shower and bed.

The next day we visited Algonquin Park for a short hike and a look at the visitors center which offered great views of the park. It is a huge place though at about 7000 square kilometers and is home to thousands of species of plants and animals including moose, beaver, black bear, raccoon,chipmunks, mink, lynx, skunk, wolf, and deer.

After the park we Kayaked up a beautiful river to a waterfall which had smoothed the rock so much that you could slide down it into the river at the bottom. That evening we had a great BBQ and spent the night playing some oldies from the huge collection of Vinyl to be found in the Hostel. Later there was a camp fire and some guitar strumming courtesy of one of the Moose bus drivers.

Posted by ride165 08:20 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

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