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Alaska to South America: Two Moto Kiwis (page 37)

Vancouver Island - What a Blast

Huge thanks to Cindy for taking us in and welcoming us to the Island, some net time to catch up with ADVers, Hubbers etc and work out accom and things were starting to fall back into place, with the fate of Chiwi still unknown we have no option but to make the best of where were at. 

We had a very nice ferry ride from Taswassen to Swartz Bay on Friday 27th July. 

While we are waiting in the que in Tswassen, a couple came to us said we can jump right in the front or the que because they give motorcycles priority - we felt lucky. When we were 3/4 way to Swartz Bay, the captain announced there were some killer whales on the left side, we were sitting there in perfect viewing seats, and true, three or four pods of killer whales were jumping and playing - what a nice welcoming to Vancouver Island!

Cindy found us from ADV forum, she offered to pick up us from the ferry and when she knew we didn’t have any where to stay for the night, she offered us to stay in her house, since she works at night, so Andi and I slept on her bed. 

Andi and I were cramped onto one bike, so we couldn’t take our big tent with us. This is one thing we did not consider that we would have to do a portion of our trip on one bike ... bad planning or optimistic that we have two reliable bikes .. not sure. Cindy even lent us her little tent. We are now armed and dangerous again! 

Another ADVer David from far north of the Island and his wife Kandi offered to meet us at Sayward the next day in the evening, so we had some good advice from Cindy and rode to the north to meet them. We missed one route and decided to go around lake Cowichan, which turned out to be a two hour gravel road in the middle of no where, that’s how our adventure unfolded and we still made it with time up our sleeve.... easy as bro!!

We finally arrived at Sayward around 7pm, David and Kandi arrived just after 8pm. We had tea at the pub, which was very nice, then headed to a free camping ground. 

Sunday morning, after a quick breakfast, we started to travel further north. David led us to Mt Cain, which is a ski field in the winter. The gravel road was maintained very well, I’m used to sitting on the bike without foot pegs now.

Groovy concrete blocks on the way down

Our original plan was going through another gravel road pass a cave then arrive to Telegraph Cove. Only about 15ks up, the road closed for logging. We had to turn around, get on paved road to Telegraph Cove. 

Telegraph Cove is a tourist destination, it is a little harbour, with nice restaurants and cafes, its beautiful too. We had lunch there, then Kandi needed to get home, so we went to Port McNeil to send her on the ferry back to home after a quick stock up on food.

Some cool signs

David then took us to the very north of the island. We were planning to camp at Cape Palmerston, but when we got there, the sea fog was quite thick, almost drizzling. There were lots of Salmon berries around, we had a good feed on them. They are orange and red, the orange has a light sweet and bitter test, the red ones are sweeter. 

We had a huge feast on these YUMMO 

We decided the coast is not very good for camping, because our loaned tent is only good for dry night. David has his plan B, which was 15ks back on the way back called Swan Lake. We got there, also brought some fire wood with us, then realized the plan B was no good either - the place looks very wet and the path to the lake looks like a bear trail, and the lake was only a puddle - no good for drinking...then the mozzies came out! 

Fire wood collecting, the DR logging truck! 

Our hunting for camping turns into a mini adventure in itself. Time to form a Plan C. We went all the way back which was only another 5 k, and finally found a wee camping site on a river side. The river called “ Good Speed river’”. Just likes its name, the river was quiet. We set up our tent and lit a camp fire on the river bed. After a bit organisation, we had our steak, potato, onion and corn all cooked.

Then we realized the water was coming up. First we shift our fire further up, the water was still creeping up quietly, we had to move back up to the bank. Hence you see the photo of our fire in the middle of the river now. Anyway, it was time to bed, we just leave the fire for the mother nature to deal with..... two Great White Hunters and an intellectual Asian sidekick .. all this local knowledge and experience and we forgot about the tidal zone.


Author of this article: Twomotokiwis