Kayaking the Broken Islands

Page 3

 

On our third day we moved camp, paddling through some of the inland islands to Gibraltar Island.  This allowed us to explore the islands near the back of Barkley Sound, and set us up for a closer run to Sechart on our last day.  

The Gibraltar campground has three spectacular, but somewhat exposed campsites on a peninsula with sweeping views in all directions.  It has considerably more sites among the trees, which give protection from the wind, and offer a more enclosed, wooded scenery.  

 

Bob, doing a bit of reading.

View from one of the exposed sites on Gibraltar Island.

Don exploring a shoreline.

Bob and Dan pulling out after a day excursion.

A clean, relatively odorless chemical toilet found at the Canadian campsites.

Children enjoying a tide pool on Gibraltar Island.

The Gibraltar campground is supervised by Montrose, the mink.  He critically monitors all activities and is regularly seen peering around a rock or over a log.  He is normally discrete, but about once every two hours, he marches boldly down to the beach, swims out 50 yards, and dives, returning to the surface with a Dungeness crab, often bigger than his head.  Once on shore, a struggle begins as the crab, not about to give up easily, pinches the soft places on Montrose's face.  After springing back in pain, Montrose, showing clear indignation, bites furiously at the crab, and when it is subdued, he leisurely eats it, shell and all.  

Montrose, the mink.

Montrose, dining on crab. 

Cooking in the rain.

Our last day on Gibraltar was wet, with mostly steady rain.  For me it was a good introduction to Pacific Northwest conditions, and I found that the secret is a BIG tarp.  Mine was slightly larger than my tent, but for really comfortable rain camping, an extra large tarp, cut aerodynamically so that it billows like a sail in the wind rather than flapping, makes camping in the rain very do-able.  Our community cook tarp proved to be the gathering place, and we were able to enjoy the still-beautiful scenery,  discuss matters of marginal importance while sipping hot coffee with a fair degree of comfort and conviviality.  

On our last morning, the rain continued steadily until all the tents were down and the kayaks were packed, and then it stopped.  Once in Sechart, as we unloaded our kayaks, the rain started again.  Despite the rain, it was an altogether pleasant five days, with magnificent scenery, good exercise, and very good company. 

 

Don Webster

The End

 

 

 

 

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Other Links:  

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve 

MV Lady Rose Marine Services:  They operate the ferries down the Alberni Inlet.

Map of the Broken Islands Group

Don's Home Page:  www.jali.net

Don's email: websterdr@yahoo.com

 

 

Page by Don Websterwebsterdr@yahoo.com