Sunshine Coast Bike Tour, Powell River to Comox

By Jane | May 2, 2015

Powell River is a mixed-up little place.

It has been a mill town since the early 1900s and the mill is still a major employer in the community. In fact, a picture of the mill is still proudly displayed on the “Welcome to Powell River” sign.

A beach walk under the mill in  Powell River.

A beach walk under the mill in Powell River.

As the gateway to Desolation Sound, one of the most beautiful marine parks in the world, Powell River is also a bustling summer tourist destination. Lots of young families have moved here for the outdoor lifestyle and the relatively inexpensive real estate and it’s also a popular retirement community.

Also in residence are a branch of the Coast Salish peoples, who lived here long before Europeans “discovered” the new world.

Powell River is not sure if it is a town that time forgot, a cozy bedroom community, or an up-and-coming travel hotspot. Fancy spas, expensive boutiques, and trendy restaurants rub shoulders with old time barber shops and butchers.

This reminds me of the dog meat signs all over Vietnam.

This reminds me of the dog meat signs all over Vietnam.

Idyllic seaside homes sit comfortably across the street from rundown shacks.

It is a city of constant contrast, which as you’ll know if you read My Five Acres regularly, is just the kind of thing I like.

Also, where else would you see this?

It’s not a whale, but it’s a pretty great sighting nonetheless.

I Ain’t Missing You At All

Today was my official rest day. I took the ferry back to Vancouver Island and am camping within the city boundaries of Comox tonight. All told, my distance covered today was 17 nautical miles and about 20 km on Skaar.

(In case you missed it, yesterday I named my bike Skaar).

Canada’s campgrounds are among the most impressive I’ve seen anywhere, except of course for Solar in Croatia.

Whether they are provincial parks or privately owned, the emphasis is on privacy, and each tent site is usually a little secluded from its neighbour. They also, unlike many campsites in Europe, boast such luxuries as trees, picnic tables, and covered areas for cooking when it rains. The campground I’m at tonight, Cape Lazo RV & Campground is a cut above, with a market, a playground, a pavilion, and bathrooms that rival a day spa.

Oh yeah, and there’s campground-wide WiFi. I’m checking Facebook from my tent. If I’m camping basically in town anyway, I might as well have a little luxury, right?

Because I didn’t have to struggle along on Skaar today I had more time to be aware of how acutely I miss Stephen. It’s not for all the obvious reasons – like that he keeps the tent warm at night, does all the cooking, and carries half the gear. Really, I just miss having him here to share jokes and laugh at the things and people we encounter.

It’s not exactly boring travelling by myself, but it’s just not quite as fun.  

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4 comments

  1. Comment by Stephen

    Stephen Reply May 4, 2015 at 5:38 am

    I AM with you in spirit, but wish I was with you in REAL. Soon(ish)…

    • Comment by Jane

      Jane May 4, 2015 at 9:02 am

      Great, all I need is a spirit floating around in my tent at night. No wonder it’s been so cold!

  2. Comment by Geoff Langridge

    Geoff Langridge Reply May 4, 2015 at 1:04 am

    Lovin’ this blog, Jane – and at times I feel, while savouring my morning coffee, that you are suffering for my benefit! Take your point about Stephen too (no, I don’t want him in MY tent), but he is with you in spirit. Keep it coming . . .

    • Comment by Jane

      Jane May 4, 2015 at 9:04 am

      Well, I wouldn’t say I’m suffering exactly! I hope I’m not whining too much…

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