A bright sunny wintery day is the perfect time to explore the forest. This is one of the lower trails on Mt Elphinstone, which is the dominating landscape feature as you arrive on the Langdale ferry from West Vancouver. Lucky for me, the trailheads are only 2km from Arcturus Retreat B&B.
Most of these lower trails are built by avid mountain bikers and neighbor Sprockids Mountain Bike Park. It’s not an official park, so signage isn’t much more than a few reflectors and an occasional arrow for riders.
Nevertheless, there are some amazing trees in this forest. Note the vibrant colour on this tree…like none of its neighbours. That is Stan in front to show you just how large this tree is. So happy to have Stan join me for this hike! I don’t know this area well enough yet to head in alone.
A tree with character like this just makes you wonder at what it has been witness to over the years. It has clearly seen all of the 20th century and I wonder how much more. This forest was logged in the early 1900’s when Europeans first arrived. Port Mellon is only 10km away and was home to the first paper mill in the area.
We came across a trail called “Technical Ecstacy” which we just had to follow. Clearly a mountain bikers dream…lots of cutbacks, bridges, jumps, ramps, twists and turns. It is an easy walk, but you need to pay attention as this was clearly not built with the hiker in mind. A rider could come up quickly and definitely deserves the right of way.
It is hard to see in this picture, but you can see out to the Georgia Straight. It can be a bit dark in the forest, but light flows in at the top of the trees and is really quite a view when you come to an opening.
After travelling over the Christmas holiday, I am very aware of how green the forest is here. Other parts of North America are so brown this time of year with every plant in hibernation waiting for spring. Here on the Sunshine Coast, we are very luck to have green life everywhere all year long. Not only the trees, but the ferns and groundcover and moss all bring life to the forest floor.