Clayoquot Sound – Tofino

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We left Bamfield early in the morning for the 40 mile trip to a village called Tofino. We left Barkley Sound for the next sound to the north called East Clayoquot Sound. On our way north we spotted two different groups of humpback whales. We saw multiple breaches and a few tail slaps. Tofino is on the entrance to many deep and narrow inlets in East Clayoquot Sound. This makes for lots of current outside of the harbor. We did not like the anchorage so we went deeper into the sound and found a beautiful anchorage called Windy Bay. Despite its name it was a very calm anchorage that surrounded us by sheer cliffs that rise steeply to 1200ft. From here we took our dinghy the 5 miles back to Tofino. Tofino is a bustling tourist town with its own small fishing fleet. There are countless shops offering guided tours to see whales, bears, hot springs, or rainforest hikes. We spent the day at their public market immersing ourselves into the local art scene. There were wood carvers actively displaying their talents. Paintings of the local wildlife and environment were on many booths. Candles, beach crafts, homemade clothing, foraged foods, herbal concoctions are all just a sampling of the locally crafted wares on display. Ashley and I got a few ideas for new crafting projects to try with the kids. I bought a jar of Fireweed jelly that is made from a weed that only grows right after a forest fire. It was amazing and did not last three days. After the kids were all done looking at yet another painting of a wolf or orca we took them to the local playground to give them some time playing with other kids. It was a large playground with about 30 kids there. Our kids played with each other, electing to spend almost the entire 2 hours there on the zip line. Another nice thing about Tofino was that they recycled. We had two bags of recycling that we were carrying with us on the boat that I refused to put in the garbage. So we were able to unload our recycling. On our way back to Samadhi we stopped at a trail on Meares Island. Meares Island is home to some of the world’s largest cedar trees. Twenty-five years ago these trees were protected from logging by determined environmental protesters and the Tla-o-qui-aht and the Ahousaht First Nations. Today there is an amazing boardwalk constructed to take visitors on a path through untouched, old growth forests and past some truly magnificent trees. One of the cedar trees is called the Hanging Gardens tree and is said to be about 1500 years old!

Big Tree Trail boardwalk
Big Tree Trail boardwalk
Big Tree Trail boardwalk

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