Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Exploring Vancouver Island: A Photo Journal

For twenty-two days in July and August, Ferit and I explored Vancouver Island. Located in the southwest corner of British Columbia, Vancouver Island is the largest island in the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand. This is a photo journal of our trip.

Some days we camped in campgrounds.
Other days we claimed our own "Private Idahos" in the forest.
This is our bush camping site at the end of a logging road near Port Alberni.
We spent two days/nights here, in our own little heaven.

As one who has always slept in tents mounted on the ground,
getting used to climbing in and out of a car-top tent took a little getting used to...
especially for mid-night tea-pees.

We found great places to set-up the kitchen...

...and thanks to Ferit's cooking and luxurious gear, we dined in style.

We ate well, as did the mosquitos.
We often donned our bank-robbery outfits to keep the little bastards at bay.

We did some hiking.
On one of the hikes, Ferit crafted a gorgeous wildflower daisy chain for me to wear.

On another hike, Ferit learned the joy of hunting for blueberries.

We explored some caves.
This cave is part of the Upana Cave system, near Gold River.

And these small caves are located on the far north side of the island, in San Josef Bay.

We spent endless hours reading and talking.
Those activities looked something like this.

We practiced our drawing skills, with the help of Betty Edward's fantastic book called,
"Drawing on the Right Side of Your Brain."
Here, Ferit holds a portrait that I drew of him.

And I am holding a portrait that Ferit drew of me.

In addition to portrait drawing, we also practiced our portrait photographing skills.
Here is a photo I took of Ferit.

And here is a photo that Ferit took of me.

We did some yoga... amazingly beautiful places.

And we did some birdwatching, too.
Here, Ferit is following an owl as he drives along a narrow dirt road.

We measured the circumference of large trees in terms of hugs.

Hmmm...well,'s more like I hugged the trees.
This is the look I gave Ferit when he made fun of me for hugging trees.

While on the beach, we enjoyed the beautiful dead jellyfish "artwork."

And Ferit enjoyed making some of his own beach artwork.

We climbed rock walls...

...and hung like monkeys from tree branches.

We leapt for joy...

...and made decent attempts to cartwheel for joy, too.

We made silly faces...

...with mustaches...

...and stuck larger-than-pea-sized objects up our noses.

I began the long process of learning to kite surf,
while Ferit effortlessly sailed across the water...

...and did awesome jumps in the air, such as this one...

...and this one, too. Wee!

Although we took too few showers on the trip,
Ferit greatly enjoyed the ones he took.

I had a good chuckle when realizing that Ferit's car repair kit
was larger than his kite repair kit,
which in turn was (significantly) larger than his first aid kit.

My chuckles turned to appreciation when Ferit successfully
mended a hole in his 9-meter kite and repaired a flat tire, thanks to his repair kits.
Fortunately, I had packed my first aid kit,
which came in handy when I got stung by a bee on my lip.

Ah, and we enjoyed the gorgeous sunsets.

Other things we did, for which we do not have photographs, include:
  • Seeing the world's largest fiberglass-covered tree burl, near Port McNeill. (Ferit wasn't terribly amused by the burl, but I was.)
  • Driving over a nail-covered helipad in the middle of nowhere. (We were both amused by this.)
  • Off-roading. Even with the Backroad Mapbook and the GPS, sometimes we got lost, and sometimes we were forced to turn around due to locked gates. Despite this, it was never a dull adventure.
  • Seeing a bear rummaging around our bush camping site just outside of Whistler. Fortunately, Teddy was more interested in feeding on the termites than feeding on the humans.
  • Seeing a whale. While Ferit was teaching me how to fly the "big kite" at Nitinat Lake, we spotted a whale in the lake not more than 15 feet in front of us. For a few minutes, she swam in the shallow water, occasionally coming up for air. What a treat!
  • Booking tickets for our trip to Europe. We leave at the end of August. Although we purchased one-way tickets, we plan to return to Seattle in January. Three hoots for a fantastic time exploring Vancouver Island, and three more hoots for the next adventure!!

[Photo Credits: The second and third kiting photos were taken by Rachelle (a kiter we met from Hawaii). All other photos were taken by Ferit -- except for the photos of Ferit, which were taken by me.]


  1. I enjoyed reading about your adventures and your photos are beautiful!! Who took the pics when you're both in the water?

    1. Thanks, Mary Jo. We were never in the water at the same time.

      The place where we went kitesurfing is at a place called Nitinat Lake. It's extremely popular with kiters, and so there were many people on the lake kiting. The most I counted at any one time was 54 kites -- the sky was alive with color!

      Also, for the record, I'm still learning to kite surf. It's a slow process -- at least for me. I got as far as "body dragging" -- this is using the kite to pull you in the water. In my next lesson, I was going to learn to add the board to the mix. Unfortunately, our vacation was aborted early due to bad weather. So, I haven't had a chance to use the kite and the board together. It looks like I'll be adding the board when we get to Turkey!

    2. I'm glad you can continue your lessons! Will you be driving around Europe in a car then, so you can carry all your gear?

  2. I can't wait to see the photo journal for Europe!!! YAY!!! Have a great time!!!!

  3. WOW! At one point in time I had a fleeting thought "I havent seen a post in a long time, I hope eveyrything is okl" Then the next second it was "Its Sarah and you KNOW she is having the time of he life as is Ferit! And YEP I was right! Very cool lady!

    For the record though, there is NUTHIN wrong with huggin a tree or more challenging than a ladder trip on a midnight pee. He may not have been impressed by the fiberglass burl, but he has found himself a world class girl!

    Love the photos!! can't wait to see more of where yall go!

    1. Yeah, it's been kinda quiet on the Sarah front lately. I *wish* I had the "Tony discipline" to post everyday. Alas, I don't.

      Glad to hear that you approve of the tree huggin'. *You*, then would probably appreciate that the tree was a whopping 6.5 hugs in circumference!

      As always, thanks for your kind words. :)

  4. Great photos, looks like quite an adventure!

  5. Right on! I mean, what else can you say

  6. I would love to go kite surfing someday. I first saw this in Port Angeles; the surfer looked like he was having an amazing amount of fun.

    And I can personally attest that getting a pea (frozen) stuck up your nose is a traumatic event, especially when you're six.

    1. Indeed, kite surfing looks fun. I can't wait til I'm to the point where I can kite *and* use the board together!

      As far as the pea goes...I'll never forget when my older brother lodged a pea deep into his nasal passages. He was about the same age when you had your pea experience. Boys!


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