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Old 05-21-2014, 06:17 PM   #21
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Dave, we go to Austin every March for SXSW and have done home exchanges with five couples from Texas. Among the Island attractions they enjoyed are:

-hiking in the meadows and mountains of Strathcona Park
-walking the miles of white sand beaches at Pacific Rim National Park near Tofino
-enjoying the First Nations / surfer ambience of Tofino
-soaking in Hot Springs Cove out of Tofino
-walking among old growth forest giants on Meares Island, the Carmanah Valley, and in Cathedral Grove near Qualicum
-walking the Wild Pacific Trail near Ucuelet
-whale watching out of Telegraph Cove and Campbell River
-grizzly bear watching in Knight Inlet out of Telegraph Cove
-salmon fishing out of Campbell River
-browsing in the Provincial Museum in Victoria
-strolling around Victoria's Inner Harbour
-taking high tea at the Empress Hotel in Victoria
-viewing the Butchart Gardens near Victoria
-Island Musicfest and the Filberg Festival in the Comox Valley
-Islands Musicfest in the Cowichan Valley
-walking the trails and sandstone beaches of Helliwell Park on Hornby Island
-visiting artists' studios on Hornby and Denman Islands, and on the various southern Gulf Islands
-taking day or overnight trips to the west coast on small freighters out of Alberni (Barkley Sound) and Gold River (Nootka Sound)

Others can advise you on the best places to camp, and can mention the many attractions that I didn't.
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Old 05-21-2014, 07:01 PM   #22
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Excellent list, and for the adventurous, there is the West Coast Trail and the Juan de Fuca Trail, both are on the west side of the island. In the winter, there is storm watching, very popular. I will see if I can find some photos.
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Old 05-21-2014, 07:29 PM   #23
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We picked up the fiver July 2011 and due to a reliance on GPS instead of the map, we ended up on the island by way of Powell River. It was kind of a surprise. Fun trip though. I don't remember what the trip to the island cost but PR was $156 cdn.

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Old 05-21-2014, 07:31 PM   #24
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Cape Scott and San Joseph Bay Trails

Chris R, your comment reminded me of the Cape Scott Trail on the north end of the Island, and the easier San Joseph Bay day hike, with RV camping near the river at the trailhead. (Stock photos, not mine).
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File Type: jpg CapeScott3.jpg (172.2 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg CapeScottSign.jpg (63.4 KB, 15 views)
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Old 05-21-2014, 08:58 PM   #25
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Although a round trip by ferry is required to reach Vancouver Island, I wouldn't suggest actually returning by the same ferry used to get to the island. You see more variety by taking one route over, and a different route back.

I don't really get the degree of criticism of BC Ferries - the same trip by air carrying just the people (not the vehicles) is comparable in cost... it takes money to run those ships, so even if they mess up now and again (and again), they are providing a valuable service for reasonable cost. Again, this is not a little river crossing - inland ferries in BC (across rivers and lakes) are free of charge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveandsandyclink View Post
I guess commuting to work daily is rare.
Yes, like commuting between a home in Florida and a job in New York City (which a friend of mine did by airline). It would be irrational for most people - but possible.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:12 PM   #26
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I learned a lot of insight on your ferry system in this thread. The "must see and do list is great and I'm stashing this as a reference for my next trip up there. The first night of Escape ownership I crossed paths with a local who discouraged us from using the ferry system due to cost and service. He lived on one of the islands. We skipped a trip over to Victoria Island while in the Pacific Northwest I wish we would have taken.
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:44 PM   #27
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Hi there, I highly recommend a trip over to Vancouver Island. Catchlight hit a few of the highlights and there are many more. While the ferry fare may seem high, it is worth it. We Islanders are used to it and it is a fact of life. The cost of most things here is no different then what it is in Vancouver so do not let thIs rumor deter you. In my opinion, BC Ferries offer a great service..... safe, reliable and consistant. Can't ask for much more then that!

Regards

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Old 05-21-2014, 11:02 PM   #28
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Here are the stormy west coast photos I was looking for.
Chris
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File Type: jpg 071229D300_0610.jpg (151.4 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg 071230D300_0905.jpg (107.7 KB, 19 views)
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Old 05-22-2014, 05:57 AM   #29
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I don't think I would ever live on Vancouver Island, BUT I just love visiting there.
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Old 05-22-2014, 09:33 AM   #30
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I don't think I would ever live on Vancouver Island, BUT I just love visiting there.
Ha ha ha! I am 3rd generation Victoria, Glenn is 5th generation SaltSpring Island. I don't think we could ever live on "The Mainland" BUT we just love visiting there!
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