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Published: September 20th 2016
Oh my, what a beautiful breakfast we had delivered this morning. A glass of grapefruit juice; a parfait of chopped fresh strawberries, yoghurt, a rim of fresh blackberries topped with a strawberry; a poached egg with greens and a little tomatoe followed by an orange and pecan warm muffin - all creatively presented on a tray. This lady knows hospitality and presentation.
We then continued the Wild Pacific Trail along from where we were yesterday to the 6.5km mark. This trail is appropriately named as the coast is indeed wild. The headlands and bays are solid jagged rocks with waves surging and crashing with the ebb and flow. It is well paved and signposted and in many places they have little viewing platforms to stand on the edge of the cliffs or rocks to view out. It brings to mind Nile River Mouth and Punakaiki on the West Coast. The forest it runs through has very old cedars and other conifers which seem to stretch straight up for 10s of metres. The geology seems to be volcanic rocks and intrusives with a clearly defined boundary with limestone that was starting to form a karst look like Takaka Hill.
By the Wild Pacific Trail
Extremely rugged and jagged rocks with a surging sea
there we headed to the Pacific Rim National Park along the highway to Tefino. We called in at the Visitor Centre which is similar to ours with information about the First Nation people, the landscape, the forest and whaling. It was interesting to see just how similar the First Nation people are to the Maori with their origins, their tools, their housing and their art. To enter the Park for a day you have to get a parking ticket plus pay for walking on the beach it would seem. Now, that is completely at odds with what we do at home where the Parks belong to the People for the People so we don't pay for anything except hut usage. Maybe if we did charge DOC wouldn't keep having it's budget cut and tracks discontinued in places. Anyway, I diverse. The beaches throughout the Park are very nice and great for surfing but we have even nicer ones in Abel Tasman National Park. So we were a little ho-hum as we have so much more diversity at home. Spoilt and lucky we are.
I should note that the area of the National Park we have been in is the
Long Beach part. There are two other parts. As well as preserving the coastal section of the park it is a UNESCO biodiversity area.
We continued on to Tofino where we found it difficult to find a park. It certainly is popular and more touristy than Ucluelet but I think Ucluelet has more to offer in the way of scenic beauty but Tofino has more in the way of a town centre and shops. After having a good look around we had lunch at The Sea Shanty which sits above the harbour and you can watch tour boats, fishing boats and sea planes coming and going. The menu was mainly seafood and I had some grilled oysters (yum) with salad and Linds a ciabatta sandwich filled with salmon, crab and shrimp. The restaurant was packed the whole time we were there and we were served by a young woman from Matamata. There are many young Kiwis and Ozzies here for work and no doubt surfing too.
Heading back to Ucluelet we called into the North Chesterman Beach which is just north and out of the National Park. It is a long swimming and surfing beach of light browney-cream
Wickaninnish Beach in the Pacific Rim National Park
Because this beautiful long curved beach is in the National Park it is not as populated as those further north near Tofino where they are popular for swimming and surfing.
sand where we walked for some distance then sat on a log and watched the beach traffic - crazy dogs having fun, little kids, young people swimming and surfing and oldies having a walk. Most people in swimming had on wet suits but there were some hardy folks without them. After this morning's cloud, the sun was out and it was a great way to finish the day and our visit to the West Coast of Vancouver Island.
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