Calm

Wandering through town in the days following the recent long weekend, we sensed something of a turning point, both in the season and how busy things seemed. After a summer seeing long lineups morning, noon and night for popular places to eat, this week appears quite calm. Business still looks pretty good for proprietors, but the lines out the door have disappeared. Phew! Maybe it’ll be easier to snag a seat up at the brewery in the next little while…

The coastal trails are certainly quieter, and with some late season sunshine, the black rocks have been a pleasant place to sit with a cup of coffee and think calm thoughts.

Coffee stop

Mrs. PC startled a bear, or was startled by a bear the other day, as a tree Scout was exploring turned out to have a small bear heading up the other side of the trunk. A quiet and calm retreat ensured all was well, but it reminded me to look up more often, pay a bit more attention the next few weeks. Bears are filling up on berries, as evidenced by piles of purple poop deposited along the trails. So, make that looking down, as well as up, and left and right while we’re at it.

Calm

All in all, a calm and fruitful time of year in this corner of the PNW. We know the rain is coming, so we’ll enjoy the golden days while we can!

Rain? Here?!

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Putting my feet up

Not all the time, and not entirely sloth like – it does take a bit of a walk to get to our preferred haunts. This photo was taken early July, on one of the rare sunnier days we got to enjoy.

A lazy boy?

We’ve read and heard a good deal about how many places are experiencing extreme heat and very little rain, and after the hot weather events of last summer that occurred even in this often damp and foggy little corner, we appreciate our overall good fortune.

Damp – just a hint of mist

So, here’s to a few more summery weeks, by the calendar if not always the weather, and we’ll take any excuse going to seek out quiet spots to put our feet up!

A paws for rest…

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Sunshine at mile zero!

Our recent trip to the Sunshine Coast wasn’t overly blessed with sunshine, but when it did warm up, it was wonderful.

Sunny sparkle

We were staying just a few kilometres along the coast from Powell River, a mill town that is transitioning to an outdoor hub/cultural centre/pleasant place to while away a few days. We didn’t tackle it, but there is a trail, the Sunshine Coast Trail that runs through the high backcountry, from hut to hut, that presents a moderate challenge to keen hikers.

The end of the road

Instead of taking on the high trail, we drove to the end of the road, mile zero of highway 101, a coastal road that winds north to south 24 000 miles to Chile. We’ve made a good start, only 23 950 miles to go…

Mile zero is in Lund, a bustling little harbour at the end/start of the road. We drove there last week, setting off under cloudy and drizzly skies, but by the time we arrived after a short and pretty drive along a lakeside and through wooded hills, the sun was starting to break through.

Soon to be sunny in Lund

We parked in the lot overlooking the harbour, and what a wonderful spot Lund is located in! Our first priority was the ever important second cup of the day, and Nancy’s Bakery was just the place. We sat on the outside terrace in front of the harbour, and with the sun now fully beaming, and after a long cold spring season, we had to nudge ourselves we were in the PNW.

The tropical side of the PNW

Snow capped mountains in the far distance, boats bobbing on sparkling water, palm trees and lavender plants fringing the terrace, and a fine cup of coffee? Not too bad! Lund is a gateway for adventurous types heading into the wonderfully named Desolation Sound, but in those moments, it wasn’t too desolate. We didn’t rush to leave…

Pretty good day

As fine as all the above was, the absolute highlight was spotting a pod of orcas moving across the bay, spouting and speeding from left to right, dorsal fins high out of the water and just outside the harbour. Hello orcas! You made an already great day even better.

Orca territory

I’ll leave it there for this week – remembering the beaming sun and the magnificent orcas has me beaming as I write this. Right now, I can hear the fog horn from the lighthouse, and it doesn’t look as though we’re in for any sunshine anytime soon, so the memories of last week will have to warm us. Hopefully we’ll be saying hello sunshine as we head into summer…

Townsite saison – pairs well with sunshine

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Sunshine Coast

Sunshine Coast? Not always, but it has been sunny, the most sunshine we’ve seen in the past few months, and we’re very happy about that!

Sunnier than we’ve been used to!

A brief post, as we spend a few days in an internet free cabin a few miles outside Powell River on BC’s Sunshine Coast. Powell River is home to Townsite Brewing, and we spent a very pleasant hour in their lovely garden enjoying a jar of Suncoast Pale Ale.

Brewery garden and Suncoast Pale Ale

More to follow (from Townsite Brewing and our trip) when we return home next week. In the meantime, I hope you have a sunny weekend ahead. (I’ve seen the forecast for Ucluelet, and apparently it will be raining by the time we return – there’ll be time to catch up on blog reading. More rain and cold? Oh well…we’ve seen the sun!)

Sunshine Coast…

Warm glow

If we can’t bask in the warm glow of a sunny Spring day, then we’ll enjoy the warm glow colour and looks of a sodden cedar log!

Warm glow

The season continues to be damp and chilly, so when we head out, we do so kitted out for February or March rather than May. Cold and rain aside, everything looks fresh and green, and it is a delight to be out there.

Tangled fringe

To keep warm, we’re walking at a brisk pace, and stops to sit and admire the location are brief but enjoyable enough. With summer just a few short weeks away, we’re hopeful there’ll soon be days when we can sit on a (dry) log, basking in a proper warm glow.

Damp underfoot (underpaw?) – can’t stop for too long…

Until then, it’s appreciate the scents, sights and sounds of the dripping rainforest fringe, and don’t think too hard about why we have winter beers in the fridge…

A failed attempt at a tan and black. Almost a waste of a good stout…

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Last weekend. Mid May? Or early March?

PS Of course, the day before posting, what happens? Why, there’s an improvement and blue skies reappeared:

Blue skies! The morning after a big storm

It was Spring…

…until it wasn’t!

We took a quick trip to Victoria last weekend, and for the first time in a long cold spell, it felt like Spring. The wind was gusting, but we found a sheltered spot outside a coffee shop, and it was very pleasant to be sitting in warm sunshine contemplating the late turn in the season.

Spring!

The next morning was grey, with a hint of rain in the air. That hint was misleading, because by the time we were heading back on the Malahat Highway, the rain had turned to snow, and snow was our intermittent companion all the way home.

Spring?!

Monday promised a touch of Spring. Without knowing it, I captured a stunning image of a hummingbird – I think the image below speaks for itself, and certainly shows how attentive I can be to the local wildlife.

Hummingbird – or smudge on lens?

Did Spring stick around, with a slow yet steady increase in temperatures? No. More snow, rain, hail, sleet, and fifteen seconds of sunshine has been the week since Monday morning. Very happy we won’t have to worry about melting Easter eggs this coming weekend…

Spring arrivals

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Here’s to warmer, hoppier days ahead…

Scampering

A very brief post this week, as we continue to be enthusiastic about unpacking the boxes we spent the past two weeks packing. An invisible modern life problem to be sure, but goodness, where did all this stuff come from?

More boxes? Hmm.

Anyway, one of the many delights of our new neighbourhood is that Scout and I can scamper along the beach for our morning walks. Yes, if you’re up early and out there, you’ll catch a glimpse of a scampering PlaidCamper, gambolling in the surf and chasing sticks. Honestly, how does Scout keep up with me?

We gambol here. Or do we scamper? Hmm.

Right, time to shake off the sand, a quick towel down, and it’s back to the boxes…

What boxes? Easily distracted. Hmm.

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

“Has he gone yet? I need some rest…”

Some spring sparkle

I won’t lie, and as others have commented, it isn’t easy trying to have a positive spring in your step given the way global events are playing out, but here’s an attempt at some spring sparkle…

Bright

Last week I wrote about March murk, so we were pleasantly surprised over recent days to be enjoying quite a bit of sunshine. Being out and about and enjoying greens, blues and sparkly bits on the water, our mood was lifted, and we were happy about that.

Blues, greens, and sparkly bits

I might have mentioned it once or twice, and if you’ve ever visited the PNW, you’ll know it can get a tad damp out this way from time to time. To time, to time, to time, to time… Anyway, when there is a pattern change and a spell of bright sunshine, you do feel it and enjoy it.

A good mix

The spring sparkle did put a little extra bounce in our step as we hit the trails and wound up on some sun warmed rocks overlooking the ocean, finding time to watch the logs tumble and crash in the waves beneath our feet. The remnants of the last storm were still providing enough power to cause a splash or two. Pretty spectacular.

A splash

A small attempt this week to offer up a little warmth and positivity, or at any rate a brief distraction from all that plagues the planet right now, so let’s leave it there for this week.

Some warmth

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Ocean Blue Monday

Not too bad, not feeling too blue, we sat and enjoyed the blue ocean view from a variety of spots around town last Monday.

Not too bad, quite blue, ocean side

It was a sunny one, not too chilly, and we wandered from one place to another, basking in the extra day off for a long weekend, and slowing down. That meant from not too quick to almost at a crawl. It felt good, sun on our faces, bald eagles singing, a relatively calm ocean, and some time on our hands to enjoy it all.

Bright blue, inlet side

I don’t always enjoy the long weekends, it sometimes feels like there is an extra pressure (all in my own head, no doubt) to “make the most” of the extra holiday. I like most days, in my own way, most of the time, so no need to add any extra significance or burden.

Pretty good

Anyway, an extra day, why not go crazy, and have an extra beer? We did, a couple of new ones, from quite local to very local. Both winners, and the red ale edges it if only for being a bit different to my usual fare. A good way to round off a not too blue Monday…

Very good

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Not too blue at all!

Axe throwing? Why not?!

What could possibly go wrong?

It was cold, getting dark, too dark for the planned archery (and by planned, I mean the archery gear was in the truck, but by the time we set up a target, we couldn’t really see it…)

Earlier – a day that got better and better

Plan B! Too dark for archery? How about axe throwing? Keep moving in until you can see the target. That’s safe. Enough. No one was hurt, although I did draw blood. Turns out no matter how close I stand to the (really rather large) wooden target, at least one of my attempts at burying the hatchet will miss, and go flying into the undergrowth. The tangle of thorny undergrowth. So, yeah, I drew blood after pulling out a sharp thorn from my finger. I didn’t cry.

Light enough for archery? Yes, if we’re quick about it…

It was an almost planned meeting of young warriors, the first since the latest pandemic restrictions, and optimistically convened following a flurry of phone calls and texts earlier in the sunny afternoon. A (fool)hardy few gathered around a fire pit overlooking the bay just as it was getting dark. Too many mentors and not enough students meant the fire took quite some time to light – it was a chilly evening, so fire first – sharp objects and play (I mean safety learning and setting up a range) second. With all the expertise delaying the fire, by the time it was lit and we were warming up it was too dark to loose arrows safely.

Too slow! There’s a target?!

So no archery, mission not accomplished, and we didn’t care, because it was so good to see friends and familiar faces for real and not on Zoom etc. There’s nothing like a group of awkward men meeting up after a number of months and discovering the pandemic hasn’t eased the awkwardness. Nothing like a pandemic to improve communication skills. Anyway, you can’t just stand around (not) saying how much we’d missed each other, that’s for your inner voice or a blog. Hence the axe throwing. Doing something slightly silly and feeling less awkward? That’ll work. It was wonderful!

It’s good to be out

We’re hopeful more of the pandemic precautions will ease as it becomes prudent to do so, and as they do, I’m very much looking forward to getting back to working with mentors and youth on life affirming projects – and picking up a few more scratches and bumps along the way. With very early hints of spring here on the coast, it is time to get back outside – playtime!

“Playtime? I’m ready!”

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!