Vancouver Island, BC | Part II

April 16, 2018

As it turns out, rainy days are great for journaling. I'm currently in my nyc apartment where the weather outside is less than agreeable. I'm all caught up with my professional projects, so I took the day to edit photos and update my website / journal. 

 

This post is a continuation of my last entry which you can find here.

 

Without further ado, here's Van Isle part II.

 

 

 

 

 Our second day in Port Renfrew began as all great days begin—with eggs, bacon and coffee. Ben and I woke up early to make breakfast, and we all shook off our sleepiness up by eating on the deck in the early-morning chill of a January morning on the bay.

 

 Before heading out for the day, we took a walk down to the dock in our little "resort." This was the first time in over 24 hours that there was no rain at all, and as we took in the foggy view of the outline of the mountains, we knew we were in for an unforgettable day.

 

 

 

 After leaving Port Renfrew, our first stop was on a bridge that we'd driven over the previous day. This was just a short stop to check out the river. We took some photos (like my dorky photo pictured above) and soon after got ourselves back in the car and headed toward nearby Avatar Grove.

 

The Above photo shows the entrance to Avatar Grove. There's no designated area to park your car because this area is so remote that there isn't enough traffic to justify a parking lot. In fact, the roads to this area were so uneven and full of potholes and sharp rocks that we started to worry about the capabilities of our little rental car. However, we drove slow and made it without issue. Once we arrived, we took the left trail into the Upper Avatar Grove—home of Canada's Gnarliest Tree.

 

 

 

 

If you've never experienced an old growth forest, the only word I can think to describe it is otherworldly. Surrounded by trees of the grandest scale, you feel like an insect crawling around the forest floor. The moss hanging on the branches and the fog hanging in the air take you back to a time when the forests were completely untouched by people and nature was left to reign. During our hike, we stuck to the fairly-well blazed path, making sure to respect the plant life around us. Ben's main concern was bears, but I think that's owed to a movie he watched before coming on the trip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our next stop was Botanical Beach, on the Juan De Fuca Trail. Until this point in the day, the rain had held off, but as we started to make our way to the beach a light mist fell over the trail. The crashing of the pale blue-colored waves against the dark jagged rocks made for incredible scenery that really captures the wild, untamed essence of this area of the world. We walked along the rocks and sat and watched the waves for some time. It was during that waiting and watching that I captured this portrait of Ben and Kenna—two amazing individuals who are made more amazing because they have each other.

 

 

 

 

 

We continued hiking down the trail until and reached a flatter part of the beach where there were less rocks to break the waves as they rolled in. I'd heard that this area (further north near Tofino) has some of the best surfing on the whole west coast and I can definitely see why. We finished our day of adventure off with an obligatory awkward group photo.

 

 

Once we got back to the cabin, we hopped into the hot tub with the hopes of watching the sunset. The clouds covered the sun, but we watched as the world grew slowly dimmer and faded from the warm yellow of daytime to the cool blue of night.

 

 

 After getting out of the hot tub, we cooked dinner–pork steaks, potatoes, and veggies–played cards, and made the most of our last night in the cabin.

 

 

 

 

The next day, we woke up early to pack, clean the cabin, and set out to catch a ferry that would take us from Victoria to Port Angeles. We were headed to Seattle where we would spend one more night before flying home. Once we got to Seattle, I pretty much stopped taking pictures. I felt the real adventure had ended and all that was left was for us to enjoy each other's company and reflect on everything that we'd done and seen in the short time we were out there. 

 

That night, we met up one of Kenna's friends who lives out there, and we all had a delicious seafood dinner. Afterwards, We went back to the airbnb where, with our bellies full and bodies exhausted from travel, we watched episodes of Planet Earth II until we all fell asleep. 

I take these photos and write these captions entirely for my own enjoyment, and I'm always kind of surprised to find out that people will take time out of their day to look at what basically amounts to just some kid's vacation photos. However, since you made it this far, I sincerely hope that you were able to find something in there that made you smile. Thanks to those that support my creative endeavors.

 

-Zach.

 

 

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