The lesson I had cemented, that I hope to carry with me always, is that I’m here on Earth for a reason, that I have gifts that are necessary to explore and make space for, but that it’s also okay to do things that are just for me. I’m the collection of my lessons and experiences, and my desires are worth honouring. I also know that our ability to thrive on this planet is limited by our greed, ignorance, false sense of helplessness, and the corruption of those in power – and that we have a responsibility to this absurdly beautiful and deeply precious place we call home. I learned gratitude for the gifts of the Earth, the help of strangers, the love of my sister, my own capacity and strength, and the sense of community that kept us company when we were far from home.
My notes-to-self were centred on writing that day, and how I could release myself from the fear of writing poorly, or that no one would read or care about what I have to say. I decided that wasn’t relevant, and that I would write for myself and release it regardless of the fear. And if someone liked it, or needed it, then that is why I did it. For that one person. Even if that one person was me.
After three hours on the water, we found our island! It was very small. We pulled up next to a houseboat that was moored on the dock. They offered to help but it’s my experience that something like that only needs a couple hands, and it’s good practise to make sure you can do it alone, so we passed on the offer and got ourselves out of the canoe and up on the dock.
A skunk starting snooping around! She was absolutely persistent and was not afraid of us whatsoever. At first Christine and I were both nervous because getting sprayed is zero fun, but she never turned her back to us or anything, or seemed like she felt the least bit threatened, so we tried hissing at her and making other noises, but after a while we just started to ignore her. But she wouldn’t leave us along until the food was completely put away.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have the best experience. When we looked up the beach online, we saw that it was closed due to fecal contamination from the nearby RV campground. Shut due to shit.
Although drizzling at first with the horizon clouded out by the rain, while we were up there looking around, the fog lifted and we saw the full scene, uncovered, before us. We hadn’t realized that there were lakes right in front of us, beautiful mist-covered bodies of water shouldered by tall tamaracks and evergreens. The contrast between the golden trees, the bare granite, the grey-blue of the lake, and the bright green of the foliage was stunning.
Standing on that ruddy cliff overlooking a violent ocean, with the wind ripping at our coats and threatening to blur our vision entirely, I had a moment of complete devotion. I felt so connected to our sublime planet and her machinations, and my tiny but never insignificant position on her. I had been gifted with the experience of seeing a sliver of Canada, and to go from one end to the absolute tip of the other felt like a pilgrimage.
The rain, when we arrived, absolutely blistered. Not much grows on the mantle, so the wind can really whip around the massive hills. We really got pelted but we tried to hike hard to keep ourselves warm. The hike was easy and really neat, with waterfall streams along the way, culminating in a really unique swirling circular rapids and waterfall.
The water got super choppy and it felt a little dicey for a bit, but eventually we docked and made our way back down the 3k trail to the car. Couldn’t have asked for better timing – we saw the fjords within one of the only windows of sun during the entire day.