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What would *you* cut from Vancouver Island visit?

What would *you* cut from Vancouver Island visit?

Aug 27th, 2004, 03:15 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 237
What would *you* cut from Vancouver Island visit?

I appreciate all the assistance you've given re: various elements of our upcoming trip.

Now, the dilemma becomes...
too many "absolute 'want-to-do's'
versus too few days/nights to do them in! :-\ And, my hubby & I are having a touch time cutting anything *else* out...
we already *have* cut things.

So, could really use residents or regular visitors' help in winnowing down our choices here!
We're STUCK.
Believe me, we would have loved to add time for Quadra or Hornby, too!
But, have just run out of time. :-{

Okay...here's our thinking:
We have a long 2-day drive to even reach Vancouver Island. So, we had hoped to take it easy when first there, & slow down the driving a bit finally. (hence not drive right away up to Port Hardy/Telegraph Cove area)

Original idea was to do Salt Spring for a night or 2, as we head over. (have been before...would just be a sentimental re-visit) ;-)

But, our time's looking too tight, so we've probably already given up on Salt Spring...
and even the '1-nighter' to end the trip in Victoria before catching a ferry back.
(have been to Victoria before too)

So, our next idea was to have a short drive to Port Alberni (from Nanaimo or Swartz Bay)...on Monday. (after driving the whole weekend) Do sightseeing along the way...
Coombs, Cathedral Grove, etc. & arrive at dusk or so.

Then, take the 8am Lady Rose on Tuesday to Bamfield.
Stay there 2 nights...hike (northern part of the West Coast Trail) or kayak w/the time there. (if weather's not too too wet)

Head back to Port Alberni via the Lady Rose on Thursday...and then, either head to Tofino for 3 days...(4 nights)...and then to the Northern part of the Island, after that.

or instead...head *next* towards Telegraph Cove, where we have nature outings to do & then end the trip w/Tofino.

Question is:
Is it TOO far to drive from Port Alberni (leaving at 6pm) to Telegraph Cove area?
Probably, huh? It will be getting dark then, by 7:30. It looks like it's 5 hours from Port A. to T.C.?? Or could it be less?

So, we'd probably overnight in Campbell River area & do the rest next morning w/an orcas outing in the afternoon. Then, the next day or 2+ will be spent either w/Tide Rip to see bears, or w/Great Bear Nature Tours out of Port Hardy. If we do Great Bears...that will eat up more time. Would have 2 nights there at their lodge, & then, arrive back late on the 3rd day into Port Hardy...again preventing making much headway to head to Tofino that day...
if we've left Tofino for the end. So,
Tofino gets short-changed! :-\

It seems *whatever* we do w/these current options...
we end up w/just 3 days for Tofino...*max*.
Would you opt to drop the Bamfield outing in favor of more time in Tofino area??

It seems tempting to do Bamfield, however, as it would let us see another area of Pacific Rim Nat'l Park.

Or, perhaps you'd drop the orcas outing from Telegraph Cove/Port McNeill?

Or, you'd go for a one day trip to see bears vs. the one that eats up more time...
but which sounds like an intriguing way to spend a couple of days. (while we're still w/out kids, making such a thing plausible)

Whatever the case, we'll be on boats a LOT w/our current plan during this trip.
The Lady Rose both ways (9 hours)
An orcas outing (4-5 hours)
Bear outings (2.5 hrs each way)- no matter which bear option we pick

I suppose we could do a trip to the Broken Group Islands from Tofino/Ucluelet...
but that too will involve boats, anyway...
and the Lady Rose did sound intriguing!

So...is *it* time to save Bamfield for another visit?
Or, do you feel 3 days is plenty for Tofino & that Bamfield provides another 'feel' to the region?

Or, perhaps Bamfield & Telegraph Cove are just both too similar to be worth doing?

Sorry for all the detail, but this itinerary does not yet lend itself to a simple listing of dates & towns!!
We haven't quite gotten that far & yet, would LOVE to have this sewn up by the end of this weekend.

Perhaps what we should drop depends on this trip being in late Sept/early October? Maybe one of these regions would be best saved for high summer, who knows...
Thanks again!!!

R is offline  
Aug 27th, 2004, 03:52 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 22
Do you have a reasonable hope of visiting Vancouver Island again in the near future?

The Telegraph Cove area is quite different than Bamfield. Different landscapes and wildlife. [ Orcas common around TC, for example, but not around Bamfield....]

What are your priorities? Whales? Bears? Scenery?

Anyone can offer a hundred opinions but it eventually comes down to what you will enjoy the most.

I would eliminate one of the locations and do it next time -that way you will have a bit more time to RELAX and enjoy the beautiful island.

We will be on Vancouver Island next week [Victoria and Port McNeill]and I will most likely post a few notes upon our return.


was_gannetmusic is offline  
Aug 27th, 2004, 07:29 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,121
I wouldn't worry about skipping Hornby Island. I prefer it there in the spring or early summer. The rest would involve too much driving for me. Personally I'd want to stay put and relax a while, and would therefore probably skip the Telegraph Cove part. However, I've never been to Telegraph Cove so I can't really say.
April is offline  
Aug 28th, 2004, 01:16 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 237
Thanks, Jerry & April!!

Jerry, please *do* post a 'report' when you return.
Will you be doing any tours while in Port McNeill?

yes, I wonder about the 'relaxation factor'. May not have left enough time for that. :-\
Something to be careful about while travelling...not overdoing things too much...
R is offline  
Aug 28th, 2004, 11:00 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,121
Better not thank me yet! Someone, who has seen much more of the north part of the island (and spent much more time boating) than I have, just told me that their favourite part is the east side, "starting at Robson Bight and north."
April is offline  
Sep 8th, 2004, 08:46 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 11
I've never been to Bamfield, so no comment ... the Lady Rose sounds fun, tho ... Tofino is magical, with lots of outdoors stuff to do or (for total relaxation) a great atmosphere for just bundling up in front of a fire and reading. Amazing number of good eateries, too. I especially like it in the off-seasons (too crowded in summer). I wouldn't do the Port Alberni - T Cove drive at night. It's a long haul, and deserted in many spots. T Cove is a little touristy, but once you board a boat and get out into the Strait, it's gorgeous. Lots of whales and wildlife. Saw lots of bears, too! We stayed in Port McNeill at Ev's Bunkhouse (Ev is quite a character, the rooms are modest but very reasonable, and Ev's breakfasts are phenomenal). PN is kinda funky, but we liked it.
Chouchou is offline  
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