Our route yesterday in green, nearly to last night's campsite on the water. Strathcona is the massive green area mid-island.
About two years ago we tried this drive west into Strathcona in December, only to be turned back at Strathcona Lodge because the roads ahead were closed with snow. Today we've got some rain, but like all things Vancouver Island to us, it just makes the views more intriguing.
On the right, enormous Upper Campbell lake, which the lodge sits on.
Soon the mountains loom.
Over the bridge and into the Buttles Lake campsite, at the tip of this enormous park.
As I check in ($11), I read the usual animal advice, but this one's new to me. I have a bunch of favorite lines from this poster, including "Talk to the cougar with a confident voice." Oh, heck, I also love "Do not turn your back on the cougar. Face the cougar and remain upright." (Good advice for the workplace too.)
Site #9 will work well, with a view of the lake. There's only one other camper here.
Look at that gorgeous picnic table. Art thinks it's made of redwood. Do we still cut down redwoods?
Clouds hang low on this beach behind our site.
Looking back, our neighbor's camper is dwarfed.
We wait for the rain to subside and head out for a hike.
Look at the colors.
The campsites are generous and beautifully spaced.
Our hike takes us to another side of this miles-long lake. The red tree will be our marker for getting back to the trail.
Such a view, and look at the size of that log.
Stunning root form create a sculpture garden, some by nature and others handmade.
What creates this shoreline? Rising and falling lake levels?
The tableau is perfect.
We hike the spits of land jutting into the lake.
Another rock for Wayne's collection...
...and more massive wood.
Mossy hangers-on in the trees.
Back at camp, the firemaker gets to it. It's not really raining when we start...
...but soon it's sprinkling again. Undaunted, we enjoy the warmth.
I'm drying out a beautiful linen dish towel, a gift from my friend Pat, who brought it from Ireland.
Art roasts some sausages he got today over the open fire. I'm enjoying the veg component tonight: avocado and the last of the Oregon tomatoes. The rain spritzes as lightly as I've ever felt it. Maybe we're just sitting in fog.