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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

What’s that barking noise?

We had a light rain all night and woke up to a foggy, very rainy morning. We had wanted to go for a hike today in Cumberland because it was going to be a “warm” 8+C, but we weren’t sure if the weather would clear up for us. We dressed for a rainy hike anyway, being optimistic the weather would improve





We could hear a noise coming from the floating oyster traps in Fanny Bay, so I decided to walk to the grassy landing, near the boat harbour to see what the noise was.


Sea lions barking away on the oyster traps. Apparently the sea lions sleep 8-12 hours at a time. They are binge feeders, eating all they can when food is plentiful and then will rest for long periods of time. I guess this was their “awake” time because they sure were barking up a storm!


From the grassy landing I looked back to see Newman looking wonderful against the mountains in the background.


Newman is to the right of the picnic table on the bottom left of the photo.


We headed north west up to Cumberland to find the China Bowls trail. The All Trails app rated the trail as moderate, 3.9km, out and back trail with a 102m elevation. When we arrived at the parking area there was only one other car parked on the side of the road.


The trail was very uphill and is still an active logging road. As we started up the trail, the sun came out! I had to take a call from work but it gave me a bit of a break, to catch my breath on the hill!


Sun shining through the heavily treed forest.

The logging road was nice and wide and while it was hilly, it wasn’t too difficult to walk.

With good cell service I can work from anywhere!


It’s a good thing we had the All Trails app and that my data worked on my phone, because this trail was not very well marked and at one point we had to determine which fork in the road we needed to take, to stay on the trail. We quickly realized that all of the mountain bikers take this road up to the top, and then determine which crazy difficult mountain biking trail they are going to ride back down. Got a dog? No problem, as long as they follow you on the trail, dogs are allowed “off leash”.


In Cumberland there are an amazing number of mountain bike trails of different levels of difficulty: 8 green or flat trails; 93 blue or hilly trails; 57 black diamond or hard trails; and 15 double black diamond or really difficult trails! We enjoyed looking at the names of the mountain bike trails as we hiked up to the end of the China Bowls trail.

This name cracks me up!

Don’t think I want to try this one!


The blue trails were not as high up on the road, so the descent from these trails would not be as difficult

These mountain bike trails are also hiking trails, but they looked a little bit narrow and difficult!


We heard rushing water and were delighted to find a small waterfall at the end of the hike. It was a bit hairy getting up the trail to be able to photograph the water fall, but with Richard’s help I was able to make it up to a small viewing area where I had steady footing.

A bit steep and quite a few wet tree roots to climb up and over.

Nice little waterfall at the end of the China Bowls trail.

I found these mushrooms on the side of the tree by the waterfall. I’ve looked them up but keep getting different information on the type of mushroom. Needless to say, we didn’t pick them for dinner!


After hiking down the trail we were hungry! Biblio Taco was calling our names in downtown Cumberland! And so was the the Cumberland bakery!

Door on the right is where you enter, sanitize, order and pay. Door on the left is where you come back 10 minutes later to pick up your feast! Everything is homemade at this Mexican restaurant, including the tortillas and their hot sauces! Their fish and meat are locally sourced too.


Chicken tacos with pickled red onions and red cabbage.


Pulled pork tacos.

Chicken taco salad with a homemade avocado dressing. I have to say this was the best taco salad I have ever had! Another delicious lunch meal which we ate today, like yesterday in Jerry, the Jeep! We are finding we really enjoy having lunch out somewhere, and then coming home before dark, to have our dinner at home in Newman.


I was able to buy Richard a fresh tourtiere from the Cumberland Bakery, which I’ve frozen for his Christmas Eve meal. You can take the French guy out of Quebec, but you can’t take the Quebec out of the French guy! He’s got his pickled beets to eat with it, so he will be feasting on December 24th...I’m having a steak and mushroom pie instead....


Heading out of Cumberland towards Courtenay we saw a very unique fence around a home owner’s property . Talk about a quirky town! Anything goes it seems, but we really like the vibe in this town and definitely will be back to try some of their other trails and there is a pizza joint we really want to try too!

Old pairs of skis make up this fence around a homeowner’s property.


The fence goes down one side of the property and around the corner too!


After heading into Courtenay for a quick visit to our local Staples for some printing and envelopes, we headed to Union Bay for a quick trip to the post office. No cards or letters yet for us...still hoping we get some mail some day and that my new camera shows up too!




100% chance of rain tomorrow but it won’t be the polar vortex that is coming back home!






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ronporter38
16 dic 2020

I’m pretty sure that was a Fungi on the tree and not a Mushroom. Good thing you left it on the tree & not considered home for dinner. Probably not a good idea for a primarily city dwelling Easterner to consider foraging for edible mushrooms in B.C. 😀

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