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Sunshine Coast Trail Part#5

DAY 9 – Meet the VIP

Mission for today: Don’t get lost girl! I checked a couple times with the GPS but still, when I had to decide if I wanted to go right or left to make a loop around a hill I ended up on the right side even though I was sure I was one the left trail. However, I was again lucky this happened because one hour later I bumped into Eagle Walz. He and a couple other people founded the Sunshine Coast Trail 24 years ago, and here he was, still on the trail, dirty and sweaty, fighting with annoying bugs, chainsaw in his hand cleaning the trail. How awesome is that? We chatted for a while and he even knew about the lost boy(girl)friends story at Tin Hat as Dawn is a good friend of his—tiny Sunshine Coast world. It turns out he is also from Germany, haha! Now it makes sense the trail goes up and over every mountain top 😉

I totally forgot to take a pic with him, but he signed my map.

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It was a long way up to Walt Hill Hut, but again, totally worth it. A sweet fully insulated cabin on top of a crazy bluff, facing east. Got up for sunrise at 5:50 the next morning, good idea 🙂

DAY 10 – Civilization

I had a long day ahead of me, so there was really no time to get lost today… In the morning I made my way down from the Smith Range towards Stillwater. I was thinking about bailing here, by getting off the trail and skipping the last sectionas I wasn’t sure if the snow up on Mt. Troubridge had melted yet. But the weather was too nice, I had lots of time AND I met Eagle. There was no way I could skip the end and NOT finish the trail. Unfortunately, as I only had enough food for ten days I had to go into Stillwater to get more supplies. Dawn and Geoff gave me their number and said they live right at the trailhead, so if I needed something I could call them and they would pick me up or drop supplies off. Since I had reception again and my schedule was kind of tight (as I wanted to get to the next cabin that day), I thought I would give it a try and called them. It worked out perfectly! Dawn was at home, so she came and picked me up and gave me a ride to the store, but they didn’t have the propane I needed. So we drove to their house (of course another awesome first row ocean view house) where we met Geoff. He took me into Powell River to get the right propane and food. When we came back to the house Dawn had some lunch ready. Grilled cheese and PEANUTBUTTER-HOMEMADE-JAM toast. That was so good! Peanut butter isn’t bad with banana and cinnamon or jam – YUM!! Got me over my Nutella addiction for sure.

I stayed at their house way longer than I planned since Dawn told me they wanted to go to Patagonia. I still have all my pics from my trip on my phone, so I shared places and photos with them. Geoff gave me a ride back to the trail and after easy 7 kmI got to the next hut, Stanley Golden. They just built it and it’s not even on the map yet, but Eagle told me so I knew where I would have to look for a hut somewhere in the bush. Not much to say, another awesome place.

DAY 11/12/13/14 Congrats!

The next and last 2 days were pretty straight forward. Went up Mt. Troubridge on the one side, camped in a pretty Cedar Log Cabin on top and went down on the other side. The first night I had to share the cabin with another person. A guy from Germany, hiking the trail solo, heavy pack, was wondering if he’s gonna make it all the way. Same same 🙂 Had a little sunset run to the top that night which was worth it and then a restful last sleep.

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On my way down I met a group of 4 people going up. They were stoked that I did the whole trail “Congrats girl! You for sure deserve a nice drink now!” Oh ya. I didn’t bring any booze and what not on the trail, what a nice feeling. I had lots of good ideas, finally came down enough to think in detail about this blog, a name and logo popped up in my head, had time to do some life planning and also to clear my mind and soul out from some things I was holding onto for way too long.

… and then there is the end of the trail. One step and it’s over. Done. That easy. The trail spit me out at Saltary Bay, the ferry terminal where I arrived in Janice’ and Frankies car 2 weeks ago. Not really an idea of if and how I will make this work and not the tiniest guess of how awesome it would be, what unbelievable great people I would meet and how it would change me and my world again a little bit.

From there I hitched back to Loras’ house as she invited me to come over for a shower, food and a bed after I finish. The last ride was with 2 guys again. They congratulated me and took me to the pub where I had the sandwich on the trail as they said they have the best Cesars in the world. It was really good and with all the Shrimp, sausage and pickels in there a full meal for me after the hike. Funny how fast I got hammered of that after 2 weeks of alcohol abstinence 😀

I forgot it was mothers day, so when I got to Loras house (the guys dropped me off right there) her daughter Chesney from Victoria was there, as it was Sunday her husband was there as well and they were hanging out in their awesome backyard giving me a warm welcome. I had another best shower in my life, Chesney made some delicious Mums Day Dinner and Janice came over and we had some drinks together. After that I fell into a bed that felt like heaven and had a very good sleep. Could not have thought of a better finish of the trail. Thank you guys for being so awesome!

The next day they gave me a ride to the ferry, where I accidentally (of course) ran into the group I met on the trail the other day. They were heading to Van, so I got a ride with them all the way to Gibsons where I had a little stopover to see my friend Eileen. Perfect! We went for a little stroll, some food, some beach, I checked out her nice place and then caught the ferry to Horseshoe Bay. Before we reached the terminal I checked every single car on the ferry with my “Squamish?!” cardboard sign to find a ride. Worked out again, a couple from Israel on their way to Whistler gave me a ride. On the sea to sky highway they were so stoked about how pretty it is here and couldn’t belief that I live in the middle of all this. They dropped me off on the highway and I walked back to my friends trailer.

Where I started walking exactly 2 weeks ago.

As if nothing happened.

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Mel • July 10, 2016


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Comments

  1. Judy Carlson July 19, 2016 - 9:58 am Reply

    Great story–what an inspirational trip. Loved reading about it!
    (I knew Golden Stanley after he retired from the land he homesteaded where the cabin is now–looks like the forest has all grown up again.)
    So glad you have shared your experiences with everyone and hope you have many more great adventures.

    • Mel July 19, 2016 - 12:17 pm Reply

      Hi Judy!
      Thanks a lot for writing me here 🙂
      Enjoy your summer & lots of adventures!
      Mel

  2. Nic March 21, 2017 - 1:03 pm Reply

    Thanks so much for sharing this!
    My husband and I are from North Van and have been dying to hike the Sunshine Coast hut-to-hut trail for years now. Thanks for confirming it is all we hope it will be. 🙂

    • Mel March 21, 2017 - 2:17 pm Reply

      Hey Nic!
      Thanks for leaving a comment here!
      And… Yes! Go for it! It can only get more famous each year. Let the snow melt a bit more (for the section on Mt. Troubridge) and then pack your bag and get excited. I did it in spring and it was beautiful! Enjoy 🙂
      Mel

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