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Vancouver Island - Day 56

It was a cold damp morning, there was a heavy dew and the sun was hidden behind thick clouds. We put on all our layers, trying to ignore the wet cold thermals, and got up for breakfast. Our kind neighbours at the campground had offered to make breakfast for us. We were treated to hot pancakes with maple syrup, butter and fresh fruit. They were so delicious and the plate was piled high. We chatted to the two Dutch travellers for most of the morning, drinking tea and waiting for the tide to go out. They headed off in their campervan and we got sick of waiting for the tide and decided to get on the water early. We were paddling against the outgoing tide so we were slower than usual, but there was no wind and the water was glassy so we were making the most of the nice conditions. We paddled across to Denman island and followed the coast, there were eagles flying above us and seals and sea lions covered the coast.

I made a spear to catch crabs with. It’s just a long stick that I have sharpened at one end. As we paddle I can spear crabs then cook them over the fire for dinner. I could smell the wood fires from the homes on the island, it’s such a nostalgic smell, it made me dream of open wood fires inside in winter. The mountains on Vancouver island are starting to get patches of snow on them, slowly but surely winter is on its way. Luckily Ngaio and I both have very warm sleeping bags, so warm that we often are unzipping them so we can cool off during the night. We paddled until early evening when we pulled up on a beach and set off to find a good camp spot. We spotted a family of deer as we crossed the little island in search of a sheltered spot. I asked Ngaio to get my bow from the boat but she politely declined...

It’s going to pour with rain tonight and the wind is supposed to pick up so we were in search of shelter. I put up the tarp then the tent under a big tree with low hanging branches, not a sheltered Forrest but better than nothing. We just finished setting up camp when the rain came in, Ngaio came running up to camp with the last load of gear from the boat. She jumped in the tent and started making the beds while I got to boiling water for our dinners.

Paddling conditions are looking ok for tomorrow, fingers crossed they stay that way!

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