Home Uncategorized West Coast Trail – Day Three

West Coast Trail – Day Three

by Aaron Wong
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Tsusiat Point Camp to Cribs Creek Camp

6:20am came along and up I was. The sun rosed a while ago but not quite hitting all the beach yet. The morning brisk could be felt. While the others were sleeping, I took a short stroll along the beach towards the outhouse. 

The early morning views of Tsusiat was pristine. All quiet in the western front. The sky was silent. Some clouds were still hanging around but slowly moving away. The waves has retreated back away from the beach. Everything about this morning was naturely majestic.

After coming back from the outhouse, I then went to the waterfall about less than a minute walk north from our campsite. Fetched some water behind the waterfall, then washed up a bit there. 

Then back at the campsite just before 7am, I cooked myself some simple oatmeal in our communal area which we made last evening. Slowly eating my oats while watching the waves with the sunrise. 

The others eventually woke up just before 8am. Did their morning thing and had their usual breakfast. Everyone then began to pack up around 8:30am. Before we left our campsite, we swept the area to make sure we didn’t leave anything behind. At 8:45am, off we went hiking along the beach from Tsusiat to our next camping spot at Cribs Creek Camp.

We enjoyed hiking along the beach and admiring the waves and the silent lit up sky. The sand on the beach was firm enough for us to trek on and created our tracks each step we took. We saw some animal footprints which appeared to be that of a fox. 

While others strolled pass me, hiking side by side, it was cool to see their parallel footprints, so I took a quick snapshot of that. Pretty cool! An half hour into our hike, we passed by a rock with few trees on top on our left and smaller rocks on our right. I thought at the moment as we passed between them, we enter another majestic realm. It was a magical experience hiking along the beach as we enjoyed every moment of it. 

We then reached Tsuquadro Point at 10:15am at the 29 km mark where we had to veer to our left into the forest. From there, it was a 4km hike to Nitinat River where we would need to take the water taxi. The last 4km hiking in the forest was quite nice to be in the shade as the sun was at full blast. The scenic parts about this forest was the viewpoints along the way overlooking the beach and the sea. 

While hiking in the forest, we passed through Ditidaht Tribe Reserve Lands and a Patrol Cabin which are private property. Always respect First Nations Lands no matter what. We passed by coves and found a nice viewpoints. At around 11:15am, we reached a very nice open viewpoint overlooking the beach with the sounds of waves. We took a quick micro break and snapped some photos of each other. The hike from there to after the 31 km mark, was just scenic.

The last 300m to the Water Taxi, we back in the forest again, and eventually reach our desired point at 12noon where we had to take the Water Taxi across Nitinat River. There was a young couple there waiting for the taxi as well. Since the river crossing was so short, the captain (Ryan) of the water taxi can see us from the other side of the river. Less than 10 minutes, later the water taxi arrived and we hopped on the 3 minute ride to the other side. We were all excited to have a meal at the famous Crabshack as we heard a lot of things about it and made sure we brought enough cash for their expensive meals.

Once we arrived at the Crabshack, we set our packs down to the side on the benches and excitedly went to look at the menu. Quite expensive but we all expected that and planned well before we started the West Coast Trail journey and made sure we brought at least $100 cash each with us.

Since I’m vegan, I was only able to order the Potato without margarine. Paid $5 for that and well deserved. I also secretly ordered the fully loaded potato for Karlie’s morning birthday breakfast. Others had the fully loaded crab with potatoes and Halibut which is $75. It took nearly 2 hours for our lunch to be made. Quite long but we all wanted a nice home cooked meal, Crabshack Style. 

Met Carl Edgar who is the owner of the Crabshack. Chatted with him and learned lots about hime. He and his wife has been operating the Crabshack for 40 years. Their sister, nephew and son help them out. They have a 9 year old dog names Kenai and a 2 months old puppy names Duke. Quite adorable. During the off season, they spent their time in Hawaii with friends and family.

While we were waiting for our food, I watched Ryan tearing the guts out of the live crabs. It was interesting to see how they live. So simple and happy they were. After spending 2.5 hours feasting, chatting with other hikers, and atmosphere of the Crabshack, it was time for us to hit the trails. So at 2:30pm, all of us feeling energized after having our luxurious and expensive lunch meal, we continued our hike to Cribs Creek.

We hiked along the board walk mixed with alders and rocks. 
Crossed the bridge at Clo-oose. Then after 300m, we hiked on the beach until just past Dare Point.

At 5:45pm, the tide was getting higher as we were hiking along the beach. So we went over a sketchy section over a rock wall. Quite a slippery climbed which we had to be careful. We then reached the ladder that took us up to the forested trail.

This part of the forest is overgrown. As I think other hikers trekked on the beach area during low tide. Some parts of the Boardwalk is in rough condition. Lots of overgrown bushes. We bushed whack all the way to Cribs Creek. Lalit was wearing shorts and a T-shirt and it was unpleasant for him.

Finally at 7:15pm, we saw the beach. We excitedly went down to the beach. Everyone was so happy as it was a long exhausting day of 22 km hike; even though Parks Canada map says 11km from Tsusiat to Cribs Creek. Think Parks Canada map is either off on their measurements that each km seems like a mile, or we were just tired. 

Once at Cribs beach, we rested and got some sunshine. Karlie, Thery, Lalit were stretching and giving each other massages. While Josh, Quynh and I set up our tents.

As we watched the sunset, there was this bright star northwest of us. We think it might be one of the planets maybe Jupiter. 

Before we hit the sack at 11pm, Thery, Lalit, Quyhn, Josh and I were discussing quietly planning Karlie’s birthday breakfast the next morning and also at night at Walbran. It’s tough to discuss while Karlie was around, so I pretended to show others photos on my phone when in fact I was showing notes I typed to others. 

We made a consensus to wake up at 7am and prepare her breakfast surprise at 8am. Since Thery is sharing the same tent with Karlie, we wanted to make sure Karlie doesn’t wake too early before the surprise party.

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