Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands)

 

Trip To Queen Charlotte Island July 15th to 19th

July 15th

This morning we were woken up super early, at 4:15, but we lay in bed for awhile. We poured ourself some cereal, but there was no milk left so we had to drink watered down half and half haha The airport was a pretty straight forward thing. We arrived and checked our bags, went through security, and they were nice enough to give me a pat down. Our plane from Edmonton to Vancouver was okay, they had my favourite little tv screens in the head rests, but they didn’t turn on till about half way, perhaps a little earlier, but I never noticed. I watched a little bit of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, which reminds me I have to make sure to order that when I get home. When we arrived at the Vancouver airport, our next destination was a small plane to Sandspit. It had two seats on our side and about 20 rows. It was the smallest plane I had ever been on and it was pretty dated. It was rather loud as well, and since it is smaller and a bit slower it took almost the same time to fly from Edmonton to Vancouver. When we arrived at the airport, which looks more like a bus shelter, there was a bit of an issue with our rental cars. After we were given one of our vehicles, which was a van we all piled in and cruised around a little bit. It is a very small town, there are about 20 houses. There is one really cool house that is owned by an artist named Sid Dickens We had lunch at a little restaurant, courtesy of the budget lady who made the mistake. The food was regular price, but the portions were awesome. Jamie and I shared a seafood chowder that was massive. It had huge pieces of salmon and halibut along with every other wonderful thing. Jamie’s grandma had no idea that we were coming and she was surprised, but there were more people coming so the surprise was not over. The next thing we did was drive over to the ferry, which I have never been on a drive on ferry. Our next destination was checking out where we were staying. We didn’t have any issues with our place, which is a quaint old style house. Kellie and Chad, however, had a bit of an issue. The man who rented the place to them did not take the reservation properly and was not expecting them till the next day. They came back to our place and hung out for awhile, while the guy got their place ready. Later in the evening we all went to Jamie’s aunties place where everybody had some great food and just hung out. We also were able to catch Big Brother, Yay! Jamie had to drive his cousin and her friend to the ferry and we went back to her place for awhile so we got to see a bit more of the town. Then it was back to our place for a good nights rest in our twin beds haha.

July 16th

Today we are exploring the island! We have to hang out around town for awhile, to get our vehicle situation sorted out again, but after that off we go! We had the van for a short while so we heading to something called Balance Rock. It is a large rock sitting on a small point, apparently you could push and push and it would not budge. I had a bit of a mishap when I stepped on a rock covered in algae and slipped, falling on my hand which still had my camera in it. I got a good chip dented into it. The memory card had popped out and I did not know so any pictures that I had taken were on the internal memory, I was worried that it had deleted all the pictures I have taken so far. We visited St.Marys spring, which is an old wooden statue that says that if you drink from the spring you will always return to the island. However, there is also a drinking advisory warning right next to it. We cruised into and through Tlell which is suppose to be full of hippies. We visited Crystal Cabins which was really cool because it was full of rocks and necklaces made of bone. Jamie got me a really unique necklace shaped as an octopus. After cruising around we headed to our next destination, which was the shipwreck. It was a very rugged trek out and it took forever. We had the option of turning back, but I figured we had gone so far already there was no turning back. We were really not prepared for this hike what so ever. We brought no food or water, just us and a camera. Every time I would look out in the distance as far as I could, I would use that spot as a goal, or say “That is the end and where we need to be.” Unfortunately, that happened about 10 times. Visually it was an insane distance. The ship was a bit of a disappointment. It was a wooden ships back end stuck in the sand. We hung around there for awhile to rest, it would have been so nice to take a nap there, listening to the sea, but we needed to head back because we had to be at dinner by 6pm. The trek back was pretty brutal, I must admit. I was sweating, and panting. I was exhausted, dirty and covered in sea salt. To make it even worse, our entire path had been taken over by the tide. We had to climb up steep dirt walls and climb over trees and through branches. Thankfully we were able to find places to sneak through and even a fallen tree to help cross a newly formed river. By the time we got back to the car and to dinner it was 7pm. We got to enjoy amazing food. Home made seafood chowder with fresh crab and fish. They even made fresh home made deep fried halibut on the bbq. All I can say about this trip is food food food. So full, but always hungry.

July 17th
Today is crabbing day! We drove about an hour, maybe an hour and a half to the top part of the island to do some crabbing. I got to wear a handsome little overall set with attached bootie feet. You would wade out into the water and try and check out the bottom for crabs. And when you saw one you scoop and try to catch the little suckers. I was able to catch two, but they weren’t big enough to keep. I found two dead ones, and a couple that were too small to even bother with. It was a fun morning. The top half of the island seems to be a lot colder through and by the water was very windy. I still can’t believe how far the tide goes in and out. From where we were you could actually see Alaska, just barely on the horizon. There was also a dead seal that was washed up. I took a picture of it to show Jamie, I have not decided if I will post it or not yet. After that we headed back and went to the community centre for Jamie’s grandma’s 80th birthday. More food and cake, and then back to Jamie’s aunties house for more food and hanging out.

July 18th

This morning was a bit of a slow start. I am still very sore when walking from our shipwreck trek. I went down to the dock after hearing there was some pretty cool things to see. Unfortunately, I missed most of it, but caught a couple cool things. Later on I was more lucky and got to see the sun stars, jelly fish, shrimps, and fish. There were some pretty strange little fish swimming near the top. I tried to get some pictures but I don’t think you can see just how strange they were. If only I could have caught him and put him in my tank at home. We took a pretty bumpy, dusty, and twisting drive up a mountain called “Sleeping Beauty.” There were a couple cool look out points that we took pictures and were able to get some good shots of us with some pretty cool views. We took a walk on the road, it wasn’t as nature-filled as our other trek because you were on the road, but we did get to eat a couple berries called Salmon Berries. Which naturally I took pictures of for your viewing pleasure. After that we headed out for a drive for a get together and a day on the beach. It was really fun and again, I can’t believe how much of a difference the tide makes. When we got there you could take about a 10min walk out to the water, and by the end when we were leaving it was only about a 1min walk. There were a ton of little crabs out on the sand and I even found a sun star stranded on the rocks. I used some drift wood and rescued him and took him out to the water. Jamie and I lay out a blanket and took a couple of naps with our feet in the warm sand and enjoying the weather and the water. We went back to our place to change so we didn’t smell like smoke and back to Jamie’s aunties place. I commandeered the couch and we all piled in for a good episode of Big Brother. I should do a big brother blog, because some of the things those people say gives me a lot I would like to vent about. While we were there Jamie’s cousin prepared something called Gow. It is suppose to be a delicacy and they said can be pretty expensive in Japan. It consists of kelp that is hung in the water, and herring fish come and lay thousands of eggs all over them. She boiled them and cut it up and we dipped them in soya sauce and ate them. It was actually really good, but very chewy and a little too hard to digest for my lack of bowels. Unfortunately, after that it was time to say goodbye. I am back at the hotel now, just finishing up this blog.

July 19th

Time to go home. What a sad thought. It always sucks leaving vacation, especially knowing your going back to work, bleh haha. We had an interesting incident. 15min before our ferry was leaving, we locked the keys to the packed rental car in the trunk. Thankfully a family member drove by and knew a guy who could get it unlocked. We made it in time and headed to the airport. I never like flying home. I always just want to be home and skip the flying and unpacking and all that annoying stuff. I was pleasantly surprised with the flights though. Both went by surprisingly fast which is always a bonus. So now we are home, unpacking and doing a thousand loads of laundry. Back to Edmonton with its strange rain and humidity. It’s lack of ocean and wilderness, and its surplus of work and hard knox life ; ) 

Hope you all enjoyed my little recount of the trip. Feel free to jump over to the albums section to check out the great pics!

 

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