Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Day 22: Escaping the Wall of Water - Tofino to Whiterock

The previous day at the Visitor's Centre we were told that the 'wall of water' was coming. They were not lying!

Lots of wind and rain overnight, a perfect time to go.

While the Sunshine Coast and large areas of the Lower Mainland near Vancouver, BC experienced hundreds of fallen trees, major power outages and damage we missed most of the weather drama.

Leaving Port Alberni we passed through Cathedral Grove, known for its very large, old-growth trees. The winds were whipping and parking was limited so we kept on going.  As we drove along the south shore of Cameron Lake the winds were severe.  Dominic piped up from the back seat, "Mama, the speed limit is only 60 km/hr here!"  Well, when the branches are flying and the lake is boiling I was not going to stick around.  The Gypsy Wagon was let loose and we flew down the highway for a few minutes until we passed the end of the lake and things settled down a little bit.  Thankfully, we only had a few small branches fly at us.

We stopped in Coombs to see the goats and the markets.  The main market is a feast for the eyes with many interesting foods and imported wooden toys and art supplies.  A real mix of unusual items crammed into every possible space.  The other vendors were mostly heavily incensed stores full of imported silk clothing, carved Buddhas, naked female forms and ice cream. We took a pass after the first two stores.

Because our 'cheap' reserved sailing on BC Ferries was not departing until 8:15 pm we had some time to pass.  We parked at the mall in Nanaimo and went to see a movie.  Then, we made our way to the Duke Point terminal to pass two more hours.   Surprisingly, the ferry was not cancelled by the wind and was still running pretty much on time.

Once on the mainland we drove a short 20 minutes to White Rock to do some hobo camping in the Walmart parking lot.  This worked out well as the store was closed by the time we arrived so there was plenty of room to park.  Dominic was not too sure about parking under the buzzing heavy voltage power lines though.

We all slept well as this Walmart is not on a major road so the traffic was quiet.  The Gypsy Wagon kept us snug as bugs in a rug.

Last night on the road :).

Grabbing one last Starbucks coffee before leaving Tofino. 

The rain and winds have arrived. 

A great day to be leaving. 

Lunch at Boston Pizza in Port Alberni with the cousins. 

Lots of room to park in Port Alberni.  Nice. 

A rainbow to show us where the ferry terminal is. 


11 pm - Walmart in White Rock. 

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