Archive for September, 2016

At the end of the road

Wednesday, September 7th, 2016

Tofino, which is literally at the end of the road on the west coast of Vancouver Island, is a trek for us but so worth it. The cathedral of ancient red cedars, hemlocks and sitkas must give off pheromones and probably why we can’t stay away. The above picture is a breathtaking view of Mike’s Island and Laddie Island from the bottom of our rented cabin in August. It was our reward after five straight days of rain!

As beautiful as the water is here, it’s wild and dangerous. Last year, a tourist was swallowed by a big wave out by Tonquin Beach and six other tourists died when their whalewatching boat was broadsided by rogue waves.

In Journeys by the late Frank Harper, one of the American expat’s very first encounters in the Tofino area is with a cougar that kills his puppy. Another chapter discusses with surprising detachment the search 18 years later for his young son who is mauled to death by another cougar. He also recounts the rescue of a Tofitian who swam to Mike’s Island after her canoe overturns in the choppy cold waters of Browning Passage.

In Tales of Tofino by Dorothy Langer, the local author writes about rogue waves when describing the harsh work conditions a barnacler endures to find the goose neck aphrodisiac Europeans love. During this Tofino visit, there were warning signs posted everywhere including at Chesterman Beach about wolves. And there have been sightings of skinny bears including the one that ran across our car as we left the area.

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