Today we took the short, 1km, trail down to explore the Schooner Cove area of Long Beach in Pacific Rim National Park. With all our wandering on the beach we went about 5 km.
The weather at the RV park looked kind of grim with lots of dark clouds but off in the distance we could see a line of sunshine. It turned out that the beach was in the sunshine all the time we were there and the line of dark clouds ran right along the coast. Later in the day we went from sunshine at the beach to rain at the RV in a few minutes.
First, I have to comment once again of the park pass policy. I was being a good boy and was trying to buy a one day pass at the machines they have at each parking lot. There was a line up because no one could figure out how to do it. To start the process you had to select a number from 1 to 5 with no explanation of what each number meant. We collectively guessed that each was the group, adult, or youth, etc selection. Then you had to insert your credit card with no idea what you had selected. Then another screen came up with 1 to 5 and again no explanation. We again finally figured out that this was the number of people in the group. After hitting accept a number of time I finally got my pass. A lot of people just gave up and took their chances.
The trail to the beach is an amazing boardwalk all the way down. Its kind of old and narrow but it was interesting the way it followed the lay of the land and routed us to a few interesting trees.
Nice curving corners.
Some steep stairs down and back out of a valley and then the last set at the end.
Some big trees along the way.
The roots of this tree really wrapped themselves around the nurse log underneath.
And after negotiating this maze of logs we were out on the beach.
The trail comes out at the north end of Long Beach and then you hike around the point to get to Schooner Cove.
From the look at our track it seems we just barely made it into Schooner Cove. We got here at just about low tide. You have to watch out going too far into the Cove because at high tide the point is almost impassible.
Looking down Long Beach.
Lots and lots of sand. The beach is about 10 km long and ends at the point you can see far off in the distance below.
Since I took a photosphere, here it is.
The line between the dark angry sky and our nice sunshine was quite sharp.
This guy decided to climb this massive root.
Off of the point are several islands, that at low tide, are accessible. Time to explore.
I climbed up on the rocks behind the island on the left, above.
I took another photosphere standing up here.
So many interesting creatures to look at.
Millions of sea anemone.
Most of the rocks were just covered in tiny ones.
I have no idea what this is but it was soft and seemed to move when I touched it with my foot.
This outcropping was covered in mussels.
This one was covered in what I thought were barnacles.
I think these are barnacles.
When walking over the rocks I always thought that the little white things attached to the rocks were just little bumps but it seems they have more structure than that.
Lots of sea stars as well.
Gotta love being in the sun with a dramatic dark sky in the background.
The birds were finding something under the sand.
Looking towards the gap to Schooner’s Cove
Jennie proceeded to the beach and I, of course, climbed up on the rocks around the island on the left in the picture above.
Looking out the other way, there was a nice channel that would be great to see when there were big waves.
Lunch at Schooner’s Cove. We had to share it with exactly three other people, that we could barely see.
Heading back, it almost looked like a mushroom cloud off in the distance.
Since it was only just before 2 pm when we got back to the car, we drove down to another access point to Long Beach. The parking lot is right at the beach.
Just a few surfers out today. The waves were not very big.
We walked for a short while.
The only thing we saw were a few jellies.
Heading back to the car we wondered what caused this rust colours pool. I guess there must be iron somewhere around.
And home. Lots of great things to look at today.