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post #31 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2017, 10:24 PM
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.... Courtenay/Comox basically has everything we might need from the lower mainland, except our friends. And our friends seem to like visiting Powell River!
Hmmm... I hadn't thought of that.... that you would use Courtenay Comox as your urban area instead of Lower Mainland. That makes powell River a much more feasible place to go.... that's food for thought, thank you

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post #32 of (permalink) Old 06-26-2017, 11:28 PM
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I am not considering it seriously (too much $$$ to begin with), but sometimes just daydream "get the heck out of it all, calm, peace, quiet, nature, self-sufficient"
Perhaps you should come out this way and do the circle tour (Vancouver to Sechelt to Powell River to Comox and then back down the island to Vancouver) to see what you think about the ferry line ups/scenery/general vibe. Best to actually experience the trips and the general areas.
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post #33 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2017, 12:56 AM
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second red flag I see is this airport, as I am easily irritated by noise. Living in Kits for years low flying small / float planes most people never notice drove me crazy.
I wouldn't worry about it to be honest. Any realtor will be able to point you to locations where noise is a non-issue. Even just 10 minutes away from the airport, you will be unlikely to hear anything ever. The exception is when the Snowbirds Practice but you can go a little further away and avoid that as well and that is just a short period in the spring.
You may also consider Campbell River and the small places in between (Merville, Black Creek).
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post #34 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2017, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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When I first moved up here I thought I would be back and forth to the Lower Mainland a lot, but it has not panned out that way.
That is good point & something I find very consistent with my own experience, as someone who moved a lot (every 5 years or so on average). You think you will be doing this or that, but in reality find yourself pretty tied to place of residence

What really came out of all this discussion is that transport is far bigger issue than I perhaps thought. So let me ask 1 more thing: How much of a gong-show is Nanaimo - Horseshoe Bay ferry? I took that one several times but as a tourist who basically doesn't care. Is it similar to Horseshoe - Gibsons, or better?
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post #35 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2017, 02:00 AM
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That is good point & something I find very consistent with my own experience, as someone who moved a lot (every 5 years or so on average). You think you will be doing this or that, but in reality find yourself pretty tied to place of residence

What really came out of all this discussion is that transport is far bigger issue than I perhaps thought. So let me ask 1 more thing: How much of a gong-show is Nanaimo - Horseshoe Bay ferry? I took that one several times but as a tourist who basically doesn't care. Is it similar to Horseshoe - Gibsons, or better?
I live in the lower mainland but travel to the Island a few times/year and I grew up on the Island so I've taken that ferry many many times.

Nanaimo used to be more of a problem but then they built the Duke Point terminal a few years ago so now there is one terminal (Departure Bay) dedicated to the Horseshoe Bay route and one terminal (Duke Point) dedicated to the Tsawwassen Route.

If you are willing to take an early ferry or a late ferry or pay for a reservation, it's pretty seamless. Towards the end of the day on a busy day the schedule does slip a bit. Long weekends get busy but keep in mind that you will be going against the flow. For example, all the reservations are sold out for Horseshoe Bay to Nanaimo this Friday but there are still multiple sailings with reservations available for people going from Nanaimo to Vancouver.

The problem with the ferry system is that everyone wants to ride the boat on a long weekend but we obviously can't afford to buy 10 extra boats that will only work 6 days/year. As an Islander (and can I infer that you won't be tied to a M-F 9-5 work schedule?), you can just choose to go at the non-busy days. They even have some sailings with cheaper rates if you go off-peak. I've been on a ferry where I think there were only about 15 cars (on the full size boat!)

The cost does become a real issue though if you are going with a vehicle.

How many times/year do you think you will want to get to the mainland?


Edit to add:
Keep in mind that the reservations only apply to vehicles and that even if reservations are sold-out, they do leave some first-come first-serve deck space. Passengers rarely face sailing waits.. but on a busy weekend if can get hard to find parking - I don't know how often the parking fills up.

The key thing is to just avoid the busiest days or to plan ahead and catch an early boat with a reservation.

They publish some charts showing the busiest times.
http://www.bcferries.com/schedules/b...a_Day_rt2.html

Last edited by Steventy; 06-27-2017 at 02:04 AM.
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post #36 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2017, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Steventy; this is more or less along the lines I expected.

As mentioned I am only trying to get general feel, maybe even funneling my inner thoughts, and 1 real good thing that emerged is severity of transport. No, for what I had in mind 60-70% of the time I'd be foot passenger & this does seem to alleviate the problem.

Susie, I will be doing exactly the tour you suggested --- Van - Sechelt - Powell River - Comox - Victoria (Metchosin is 1 area I am interested in) - Nanaimo - Van. But again, this is still as tourist, and I've been on that road many times before; things are much different when you are local full-time as opposed to passing by (even if passing by with purpose).
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post #37 of (permalink) Old 06-27-2017, 02:40 AM
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Port Alberni is another one to think about. Very affordable. Still just an hour to Nanaimo but closer to Tofino than the other options. About 90 minutes to Mt. Washington. Close to the water.

In my opinion it still has a bit of that "declining logging town" feel but I wouldn't be surprised if the character is changing.

I think that Comox Valley would more options for hikes within a 60 minute drive.
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post #38 of (permalink) Old 07-13-2017, 03:49 AM Thread Starter
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solo75: If someone was coming next week (July 17) to Comox and was asking you to recommend a day-hike, what would you suggest? say 6 hrs, moderate, doesn't have to climb anything, but as scenic as possible?
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post #39 of (permalink) Old 07-13-2017, 09:07 PM
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There's an excellent FB page for VI hiking with thousands of members. It's very active and people on there very knowledgeable. they are quite willing to share up to date conditions and trail advice for every area of the island. It's a favorite FB site whenever we head over there

"Take a hike Vancouver Island"

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post #40 of (permalink) Old 07-13-2017, 10:15 PM
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Sunshine Coast & Sechelt, my 2 cents (having lived in Gibsons for 4+ years and spent lots of time there as a kid)


-Ferry is a backbreaker, can't stress that enough. You will not do daytrips to the city. You will arrive 1.5 hours early for a ferry and miss it. It will be an hour late. You will get home at midnight.
-For Squamish to Port Mellon road to happen I think you'd have to redo the entire Port Mellon to Sechelt system as well, Port Mellon road is very twisty, tight, slow.
-Recreation is very limited... do ya like hiking in trees? All day? Every day? I think it would only work if you're a sea kayaking maniac
-Very uh, self-policing lets say. I wrote a letter to the paper once to disagree with an editorial. I had a guy phone my house, people approach my parents. It's full of old people with bugger all to do but complain about everything. There are old dudes who stand around with a radar gun called 'Gibsons speed patrol' on random streets.
-There is one road, Gibsons to Sechelt. You will become consumed with rage getting stuck behind Ms. Brady old lady going 40km/h.
-Just. Don't. Do. It.
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post #41 of (permalink) Old 07-13-2017, 11:41 PM
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solo75: If someone was coming next week (July 17) to Comox and was asking you to recommend a day-hike, what would you suggest? say 6 hrs, moderate, doesn't have to climb anything, but as scenic as possible?
I would pick Crest Mountain on the Buttle Lake side. There could be snow patches higher up but normally people would have hiked up there so at least there would be footprints to follow. It is a bit of a stiff hike.
Here is a photo taken at sunset from Crest Mountain.Click image for larger version

Name:	Crest Mtn Hike Aug 18 2015 075.jpg
Views:	242
Size:	310.0 KB
ID:	214882
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post #42 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2017, 04:19 AM Thread Starter
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Looks great! Here is some info I found online for Crest: http://www.summitpost.org/crest-mountain/920362
Will post report if I do it. Thanks!
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post #43 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2017, 05:48 AM
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Here is a photo taken at sunset from Crest Mountain.Attachment 214882
Results may vary. Always pack gore-tex. Professional photographer.
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post #44 of (permalink) Old 07-14-2017, 11:59 AM
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Results may vary. Always pack gore-tex. Professional photographer.
LOL ... I went up there a few weeks back, starting in mixed sun cloud, turning to solid cloud/fog/rain 2/3 of the way up. No rain gear, No Pics, no TR ... a miserable time was had by all ... but I appreciate the "potential" and so will return soon.

BTW, there was a fair bit of snow starting a fair ways up, past 4500' ... couldn't see bugger all and snow was wet, lousy so i turned around. I'm thinking the snow's mostly gone now but the bugs will be in full force.

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