Monday, April 15, 2013

West Coast Trail Highlight-Toward Walbran

Upland bog with boardwalk trail.
 Heading toward Walbran Creek from Camper Bay, the West Coast Trail heads into sections of upland bog. The boardwalk there is meant to protect the fragile vegetation of the area, many dwarf trees and shrubs. This area is one of the most beautiful of the trail. The trees and shrubs here are dwarf-and old. The growing environment is harsh, so the plants there are extremely hardy. Beside the boardwalk, you can see sundew, a carnivorous plant.

Long ladders.
These sections give way to steep ravines that tower over creeks.  This can be a challenge for hikers, but Parks has put in ladders to scale the steep sections.  Two of these deep ravines have long sets of ladders that take you down into the ravine and back up the other side. Cullite Creek is at the bottom of one of these ravines, along with a cable car, but later in season, walking across is manageable. The is a campsite at the end of the creek, at the beachhead, in a pocket beach.  There are steep sandstone cliffs on either side of the campground, which is relatively small compared to most of the other camps. The next big ravine is Logan Creek.

The suspension bridge at Logan Creek.
At the bottom of the ladders at Logan Creek, a pretty respectable suspension bridge takes you across the creek. The view down into the creek is really nice, if you can stand the heights.

The ladder up from Logan Creek.
 Once across, the bridge ends with a ladder up the other side (going north). This is a fairly steep-and long- one, so you will want to stop to let your legs rest at the top near the kilometre marker.

Trees and mud mark the trail.
Once up the other side of Logan, the trail is mud, roots, and bog the rest of the way to Walbran Creek.
It is a fairly slow section, but beautiful and challenging at the same time.
Upland bog on the West Coast Trail
West Coast Trail upland bog

Cable Car over Walbran Creek
Cable Car Over Walbran Creek.
Beach head at the end of Walbran Creek.

Upon arrival at Walbran, the cable car becomes visible, connecting to the trail on the other side.  The preferable route is along the sea shelf, however, which takes off from the gravel bar at the beach head. There is a bit of a creek crossing there, usually best to wait to put on boots until after the crossing.

The pond formed at the end of Walbran Creek is a good place to soak feet and swim for a good trail clean after the long day of hiking.

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