Wild Side Trail with a Three Year Old

–submitted by Mathew Lettington; Read the full report on his blog

Dear Hemingway,

We did it! We survived our first father-and-son backpacking adventure. I’m happily writing the trip down as a success! We picked the perfect location, Flores Island’s Wild Side Trail, and lucked into a spate of great weather. Of course, our adventure companions helped us enjoy the trip all the more. We were just two members of an eighteen-person trip that I was co-leading. Trips of this size are often complicated, and the Wild Side Trail is fraught with additional issues. This trip proved no different. Aside from the normal challenges with the water-taxi, some of our hikers had contacted me the night before because they were stranded with a broken axle.

As I expected, you fell asleep on the drive to Tofino on the day before the trip, which made you grouchy and unwilling to go to bed that night. What’s a dad to do? We made the best of it by wandering the mean streets of Tofino, even though it was well past your normal bedtime. I treated the trip with the care that it deserved: we ate pizza-by-the-slice, I bought you a toy car at the Co-op, and when we returned to the hostel (the Doctor’s House, as you called it), we watched the sunset from the big window in our room. It was ten o’clock by the time you were asleep, after we read all the way through the Five-Minute Star Wars Stories book–twice!


Total Distance: 15 km
Total Time: 3 days




Continue reading “Wild Side Trail with a Three Year Old”

Surviving the Wild Side Trail with 21 Month Old Hemingway

When does the summer start? For many Families living on Vancouver Island they might say, May long weekend as this is when many make their first camping trip of the year. For my family, Easter weekend holds a tradition in my family, not just a lowly ham and/or turkey but a tradition of camping.

This Easter I picked the Wild Side Trail as the destination for Hemingway’s first backpacking trip. The 11 km of walking combines easy beach walking and a small mount of forest walking, over headlands. It’s satisfactorily long, worth the effort. It features beautiful west coast rainforest and offers opportunities for wild life encounters.  Further, the wilderness is old-growth forest; one of the few areas left on the west coast. The route brings hikers past dozens of forest-giants, moss so thick you’ll want to lie down and sleep forever, and at least a few Culturally Modified Trees. Adding tot he fun, I brought the Island Mountain Ramblers with us. In total 15 people hiked and camped, including three children.

Flores Island’s Wild Side Trail GPS route

Read the Full Report on his Blog….

Total Distance: 34.6 km
Time: about 9 hours of hiking over 3 days