Hike to Silvertip Falls in Wells Gray Provincial Park

Silvertip Falls is a lesser known falls in Wells Gray Provincial Park near Clearwater, British Columbia and definitely off the beaten path. Dropping 550 feet, this falls is the tallest waterfall in Wells Gray Provincial Park, coming off the shoulder of Trophy Mountain Plateau. The area is seldom explored, and so the secluded backcountry hike makes for a very special family friendly experience.

To get to Silvertip Falls, follow Clearwater Valley road north towards Wells Gray Provincial park for about 11km. Then turn right onto Spahats Creek Forest Service Road and continue to Silvertip Falls Recreation site which is about 6 km. Park near the outhouse, and you’ll find the unmarked trailhead running along the creek. This is not a long hike to the falls at just 1 km but the scenery is beautiful so you will want to linger as you explore the area. The trail was a bit overgrown with devil’s club so be careful where you step. Once you get to the foot of the falls it is possible to climb a little higher, but it does become rather steep. The cascading falls provide some beautiful shooting opportunities for the shutterbug.

The Strawberry Moose Snackery back in Clearwater is a great place for fresh baked goods and drinks after the hike.

PACK LIST

  • Hiking Boots
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Tripod
  • Water

My Top Photos for 2015

I’m a little behind on this, but what another awesome year we had as a family! We were fortunate enough to travel a great deal and had a lot of fun along the way. Here’s some of my favourite images along the way.

Waves

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. - Albert Camus
Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. – Albert Camus

Stargazing

Spirit Island has been on my bucket list for a while now, and so I was thrilled to be able to visit it this summer. It's a gorgeous spot to say the least and it was made even better as I was able to go there with a few of my favourite people!
Spirit Island has been on my bucket list for a while now, and so I was thrilled to be able to visit it this summer. It’s a gorgeous spot to say the least and it was made even better as I was able to go there with a few of my favourite people!

Solitude

An explosion of epic colour as seen this past summer at Quadra Island, BC. f
An explosion of epic colour as seen this past summer at Quadra Island, BC.

Playground

Overlander Falls on the Fraser River in Mount Robson Provincial Park. For those interested in the technical. This is a four shot panorama. I used a Lee Filter Little Stopper to obtain a 13 second exposure to smooth the water.
Overlander Falls on the Fraser River in Mount Robson Provincial Park. For those interested in the technical. This is a four shot panorama. I used a Lee Filter Little Stopper to obtain a 13 second exposure to smooth the water.

Overlander Falls Trail

Kinney Lake along the Berg Lake Trail. A little piece of paradise.
Kinney Lake along the Berg Lake Trail. A little piece of paradise.

Peaking Through

We made a quick stop at Little Qualicum Falls Provincial Park near Parksville, BC. With all the rain we've had lately, the water is really raging through the canyon. It was difficult keeping my lens clear at this misty falls!
We made a quick stop at Little Qualicum Falls Provincial Park near Parksville, BC. With all the rain we’ve had lately, the water is really raging through the canyon. It was difficult keeping my lens clear at this misty falls!
A beautiful morning at Alouette Lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park.
A beautiful morning at Alouette Lake in Golden Ears Provincial Park.
Radiator Springs in California Adventure, Disneyland.
Radiator Springs in California Adventure, Disneyland.
"How glorious a greeting the sun gives the mountains! - John Muir
“How glorious a greeting the sun gives the mountains! – John Muir
Beautiful morning light dancing through my frame!
Beautiful morning light dancing through my frame!

Cryptic Message

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Buttle Lake in Strathcona Park on Vancouver Island at first light. f
Buttle Lake in Strathcona Park on Vancouver Island at first light.

2016 is looking like a slower year travel wise, but we’re looking forward to more local adventures on Vancouver Island. Thank you for following us along the way!

Lush Forest to Secluded Beaches

Schooner Cove in Pacific Rim National Park is a great afternoon adventure suitable for families. It features:

  • Rainforest
  • Beautiful secluded sandy beaches
  • Tidal Pools
  • Box Island
  • Wildlife
  • Waves
  • 2 kilometres one way with 336 stairs

Park at the well marked parking lot off of the Pacific Rim Highway (4) about 16 kilometres south of Tofino. Start off on a relatively easy two kilometre trail. The scenic hike wanders through lush rainforest before arriving at a spectacular beachfront area. You will pass giant cedars, a number of small gullies and over a few bridges spanning small creeks. Near the end of the trail you will pass a 600 year old sitka spruce. As you get closer to the beach the rolling sounds of the ocean will greet you.

The pristine beach offers amazing views including rocky outcrops that can be accessed at low tide, so check your tide charts before arriving. A long day of exploring awaits you as you walk south along the beach to Long Beach which is a 10 kilometre expanse of beach. Allow a lot of time, because you will love exploring this area!

If you plan to stay to watch the sunset, remember to bring a flashlight as the densely forested trail back to the parking lot gets really dark!

 

PACK LIST

  • Rain gear
  • Jacket
  • Good hiking shoes or boots
  • Camera
  • Lunch
  • Water
  • Flashlight if staying past sunset

Enjoy!

My Top 10 Photos for 2014

We’ve had a great year as a family and spent a lot of time outdoors enjoying being disconnected from the hustle and bustle of a busy life. It’s funny how when you get away from your regular routine and into nature, you can really reconnect as a family and remember what really matters!

I came across Jim Goldstein’s annual Your Best Photos project, and so I thought would participate. So here are my ten favourite photos for 2014.

Sandcut Beach near Victoria, BCSandcut Beach

Fairy Lake near Port Renfrew, BC on Vancouver Island.Fairy Lake Fir

Maligne Lake in Jasper National Park, Canadian RockiesFollow the Leader

Lake O’Hara in Yoho National Park, Canadian Rockies14688569254_5d5f3a3ec9_o

Takakkaw Falls in Yoho National Park, Canadian RockiesTakakkaw Falls

Lake Louise, Banff National Park, Canadian Rockies14784835179_e68a708037_o

Lake O’Hara, Yoho National Park, Canadian RockiesCabins on the Lake

Lake O’Hara, Yoho National Park, Canadian Rockies15078174208_e71a9abe55_o

On the Lake Oesa Trail, Yoho National Park, Canadian RockiesAlong the Trail

Japanese Garden in Butchart Gardens, Victoria, BCJapanese Garden Oasis

Trail near Botanical Beach, Port Renfrew, BC on Vancouver Island.In the Woods

I think that might be eleven, but that’s how I roll. I feel incredibly fortunate to be able to visit these places along with my favourite people.  I also wish to thank  each and every one of you that took the time to take a look at my photo adventures.  I look forward to more adventures in 2015!

2015 Canadian Rockies Calendar

Hey folks,

I’m so neglectful in keeping this blog updated regularly.  My only excuse is raising a family and the craziness that comes with that.

Some of you may know that we spent about 3 weeks travelling in the Canadian Rockies this summer.  If you haven’t made that trip yet, I highly recommend it.  It blew my socks off! Totally amazing scenery, and I hope to return before too long.

I am making available some of my favourite images from the trip in a calendar which is available on my Redbubble site at this address:

http://goo.gl/cQkYXn

A few of the images are included in this post. But you can see each photo I’ve included by clicking on the link.

If you are a local from Victoria, BC area, I will be placing an order early next week for local pickup so you can save on the shipping. The cost will be $30 Canadian. Please message me to let me know and I will add to the order accordingly.

Thank you to each and every one of you for following our adventures. I wish you a fantastic day and thank you for your support!

Emerald Lake The Hanging Valley Inviting DSC07905

Have a great day!

Tall Tree Adventure

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Yes, we are THAT family! What do I mean? Well, the other day I was spending time with a close friend and she was explaining how her husband will spend a full day trying to search down a big tree in a forest, even after the fun factor has waned for the rest of the family. A big tree, she lamented! I laughed and said “I totally get it!” I was, of course, taking the side of her husband for we are THAT family.

I’m blessed with a husband who is crazy kind enough to agree to my crazy ideas. You see, when I see something cool on the internet, I want to go see it for myself. So, that starts the planning process if it is feasible, not dangerous, and is something we can do as a family, including our four year old. Those are the parameters. So, when I suggested we go find the tallest Douglas Fir Tree in the world, and we happened to be in the area, my husband again said, “why not!”

So we set off, but I’m not sure what I was thinking. It was my husband that read the disclaimer about the road which reads:

“**Please take note regarding driving to the Red Creek Fir: The
gravel logging roads from Len’s Main are rarely maintained or
not maintained at all. Use at your own risk. It is recommended that
you have enough gas, a spare tire which is in good condition (and that
you know how to change a flat tire). It is always wise when travelling
in the backcountry to let someone know where you intend to go and
when you will be back. In the event you have car trouble, stay with
your vehicle. It is best to visit the Red Creek Fir in the morning as the
road is rarely travelled after dark. Those driving rental cars should be
aware of rental contracts regarding travel on logging roads. This route
is not recommended for vehicles with low clearance (compacts, sub
compacts, sports cars etc.) SUVs, Pickups and 4x4s are best!!”

For anyone who just has to see it for themselves, here’s some directions.

So, it’s REALLY not suitable for cars! Take my word for it, you really are better off in a truck or SUV. It is bumpy, rocky and clearly not passed very often, as there were branches down along the way that needed to be cleared. My husband didn’t complain even though he had to clear the roadway from fallen branches. So, if you are going to go, bring some gloves or a chainsaw or something to clear the road. My husband had his gardening gloves but it was getting ridiculous after a while, and I even questioned whether it was a good idea! But, we pressed on, and my husband got a good workout.

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Trailhead
Trailhead

So was it worth it? Well, you can judge it for yourself, but this tree is huge! We remarked how it is a marvel that it was even spared from being logged! In addition to this awesome old growth Douglas Fir, there are giant cedars that are awe inspiring! Along the road way there’s a really cool creek which cascades straight down. Truly impressive! A fun adventure for the whole family and another wonder of creation!

Red Creek Fir

Red Creek Fir

Big Tree

Photo credit: Malia Cole
Photo credit: Malia Cole
Photo Credit: Malia Cole
Photo Credit: Malia Cole

Giant Cedar

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Creek