This is our projected itinerary for the second part of our cross-Canada journey. It picks up where Part 1 left off. The purpose of this leg is to get us down the west coast to Vancouver. There’s some decent mileage to cover but a far more relaxed atmosphere once we get to Vancouver Island. But getting there is half the fun right?
Kluane – After a few nights in our Otentik in the national park it is time to set out on the road. We’ll also say goodbye to our “Nan” who is joining us for our time in the Yukon.
Watson Lake – One can’t just draw a line south through the western part of Canada, so we have to backtrack east to catch Highway 37 south through the Rockies. Watson Lake will be our first stopping point. It will also be a big test for how much driving the family can endure.
Kinaskan Lake – Another stopping point on the way to the coast to catch a ferry. This is about the midpoint and makes sense to rest here.
Prince Rupert – This is where our ferry departs to the island. Hopefully, we get some time to relax here after some massive drives. Apparently, 6 months was not early enough to book the ferry on the Friday of a long weekend so we are booked on the Wednesday ferry which was not our first choice. We’ll update you later if the Friday waitlist ends up working for us.
Port Hardy – The ferry gets in late so we need to spend a night in the coastal town.
Campbell River – It will have been a while since the kids have had a proper beach. I’ve been to Vancouver Island a couple of times and have not made it this far north. I remember bugging my parents to go there when I was a kid for no other reason than it is was the next location on the highway sign. Finally, I will get to see what I missed.
Pacific Rim National Park – One of our major “wins” in planning so far as somehow I managed to snag a site right on the beach. Fingers crossed it does not rain the entire time as we are expecting this to be a highlight.
Sproat Lake – Paigey and I went swimming here years ago on one of those amazing “travel” days that stays etched in your memory. As we remember it, it was really hot that day and the water was perfect, people were waterskiing and I think there were rock carvings. Now we get to see if any of that was true and if we can replicate it again.
Gulf Islands National Park – Sidney – I’m not sure if this really counts but Paige was looking for a place to stay in Sidney and it turns out Gulf Islands National Park actually has a campsite on the mainland (so bizarre to refer to Vancouver Island as the mainland!). I must have checked out Gulf Islands National Park at least 5 times doing research and never noticed a campground near Sidney. But Paige did! I don’t think it has showers though. But we wanted to put the kids in another summer camp and needed a place to stay for a while. We will make this one work.
Salt Spring Island – The kids have to see the island my wife visited as a child. There’s a market, deer, cheese factory, and tidepools. There is something for everyone (try and guess which of those is for me). It will also be our first time ever living in one of those “tiny houses” you see on television.
Vancouver – There is so much to do here and yet we have so little time. As long as I get to eat at a White Spot, I will be happy. I hope I don’t have to revisit my fear of heights at the Capilano Bridge which for some reason I’ve had to do a couple times in my life. The outcome is always the same, I hold on tightly to the rails and people laugh at me.
We are on Vancouver Island and the surrounding area for a decent chunk of late Summer so if anyone wants to come and join, we’d love it.
We might not create a post about the third Canadian leg yet because it’s the one with the most flexibility. As September rolls around, the campgrounds and summer resorts empty out and we’ll have lots of options. We’re still arguing if we stay in Canada or take the American route home. But rest assured, stops in Canmore (to see cousin Shawna) and Calgary (to see cousin Lorron) will be included.
Ciao for now