Other Half of Haida Gwaii
We spent a week in the south of Haida Gwaii. Moresby Island
does have a permanent population (Sandspit being the largest
concentration), but the total is probably fewer than 300 year
round residents. Graham Island - most of the North of of
Haida Gwaii has more than 500 thousand year round residents in
four major communities and a fewer smaller groups. We got
off the boat in Moresby Camp and were dropped off at Alliford Bay
to catch the ferry to Skidegate Landing. We picked up our
rental car there from a local rental and went to our B&B in
Daajing Giids. The B&B was lovely, but we were
especially happy with the on site laundry.
The next morning the kids wanted a sleep in (there weren't any of
the boat) and a "low activity day". Having paid for 4 return
flights to Haida Gwaii, I wasn't about to sit at home and watch
TV. I did a bit of research and decided to hike to the wreck
of the Pezuta. The hike is 12.2km round trip on a nearly
flat trail. I had breakfast and off I went to Tlell, about
30 minuets north of Daajing Giids.
The trail runs parallel to stream / tidal estuary that flows from
the further south on the Island. You start with a
small hill and then walk along a ridge until you come back down to
There is a bridge
across one of the larger streams. The stream runs a dark tea
colour from all of the tanin in the water.
After perhaps two km, you break out onto a service road at beach
level and walk out to the wreck area. This is potentially one
of the busiest trails in Haida Gwaii with lots of families coming an
When I got back home, the kids were curious where I went. I
showed them photos and they wish they went! That said, the
didn't want to leave until after lunch. Oh well.
The next day we drop up to Masset with a stop in Port Clements for
lunch. Port Clements has a pretty large museum focused on
"settler" artifacts from the forestry sector. Some of the
artifacts are familiar from when I grew up (I'm sure we had the
same Sears Catalog at our house), but many of the artifacts are
about logging and mining.
There is a local story about the golden spruce that was cut down in
1997. That spruce was full size and cutting were taken and
replanted in a variety of places. There is one cutting quite
close to the museum, behind the church. We found out that the
golden spruce variant is quite light sensitive and can't grow very
tall because it's exposed to full sunlight. The tree would do
better growing up in the shadow of taller trees.
We drove the rest of the way to Masset and spent the last few
minutes of day to check out the shopping options in Old
Masset. Old Masset is a reserve, but there are a number of
gift shops (Sarah's,
Gin Kuyaas, Spril White) that are selling items.
Tow hill is
about 45 minutes east of Masset and has a few attractions - beach
access with tidepools and a hike to the top of the hill for views
east and west. We started with the walk down to the
From the beach, you get quite a
nice view of Tow Hill - what used to be the inside of volanco.
The trail up has generous boardwalks and is super clearly signed.
About three quarters of the way up the hill you can a nice view east
to Rose Spit. Sadly today was foggy so we didn't get much of a
view. From the top of the hill you get a view west to Agate
beach and (if you could see that far) the airport and Masset.
The hike back down was quick.
far out, I wanted to visit the pole at the Hiellen Village
Longhouses and see the beach access. The pole was raised June
21st, 2017 and replaced a similarly pole that stood in its
place. The use of color on poles has changed over time - they
were once colored with black and red but more modern poles use more
On the ride back to Masset we
stopped in at North Beach Tacos. The parallels between this
area at Tofino-Ucluelet are strong. Tacofino in Tofino has
grown to half a dozen locations in Vancouver and the Tofino location
often has 45 minute line-ups. This Taco stand has three
parking stalls (another family arrived as we left) and it's really a
one person operation.
The Taco's here were fantastic - not
what you expect to come out of small store on a dirt road. The
family running the store are previously from the Los Angles area and
came here for a change of pace. They do get internet - they
have a cell receiver high enough up that they do get some
signal. We were happy for the tacos.
Further toward town, we stopped at Haida Gwaii Beach Shop for
stickers and Ice Cream.
Last - we stopped in town for more tacos and more ice-cream at
Charters Food Truck.
Our flight was at 3pm which meant we wanted
to be on shuttle bus that leaves on the 1pm ferry. Skidegate
days has lots of activities - bingo, a marathon, a small street
market and canoe racing. I really wanted to see the Canoe
racing, but they were an afternoon activty after we were on our
plane. We parked at the community hall and walked down to
see the street market.
The market is setup along the ocean front
road and every vendor had really nice tents.
We started with the Ocean Wise table that had a number of really
nice touching items - a Sea Turtle Skull (cast) and Sea Lion
skull. We visited the Laskeek Bay Conservation Society which
had some nice diagrams of birds nesting on Limestone island.
The kids really wanted the treats and they
Not wanting to miss our ferry, we went off
to the ferry (drop off the rental car) and onto our flights!
Tags: wreck(3), beach(3), cake(1), dessert(1), skeleton(1), food in flight(1)
From: John Harvey Photo > John's Overnight Page > Haida Gwaii > Graham Island
Last Modified Monday, October 2nd, 2023 at 12:48:00 Edit
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