Near Tofino on the very west coast of Vancouver Island,I stayed at Esowista, a First Nation village, half way between Tofino and Ecluelet right on the beach at the northern end of Long Beach. I hoped for surf but it had been flat for about a week. I swam anyway but the water only came up to my waist. I slushed my way to a mini-island where cedars clawed their way between boulders to take root.
The following day, I drove to Ucluelet, on the south-west corner of Vancouver Island where I walked a tiny part of the Wild Pacific Trail. The warning signs weren’t inviting because it’s a seventy-five kilometre hike through rough terrain so not you’re average trail. I took off along the beginning section with jagged rocks and wild vegetation. Some of the trees had strange root systems as if instead of extending from one trunk underground, they spread out like three giant claws and clung to the earth; a safeguard against the wild winds and rain that pound the island in the winter when the trail is off limits to even the toughest backpacking hiker.