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  • Writer's pictureRuth Mcbride

Why is the water pump on?!!

We woke up to the sun streaming in the windows of Newman this morning! The sun is definitely coming up earlier now. After sitting around for a bit and catching up on emails and social media, we both said “let’s get an early start today!” At +6C and sunny, we didn’t want to waste a minute of the day outside!

I had put some laundry in our washer/dryer combo unit and was finishing up my ‘toilette’ as Richard likes to call it, when I turned on the water in Newman to wash my hands, and I heard the water pump go on. I thought to myself that’s strange, why is the water pump coming on since its not freezing outside? I called to Richard who was already outside talking to our neighbour Jim, and Richard went to investigate what was up with the water line. After inspecting the water line, Richard discovered that our water hose had frozen again and we were using our ‘onboard water’, in Newman, and that is why the pump was coming on. Richard proceeded to shake the drinking water hose, tap on the water filter and eventually when I tried the water inside, the water ran without the water pump coming on.

The ultimate solution to RV life in freezing weather is to have a heated water hose that is insulated and plugged into a regular electric plug at the outside power pedestal. I said to Richard “That’s it! We are going to get a heated water hose today!! As we started down the Highway 19 to Nanoose Bay for our hike today, I called ‘Big Boys Toys’ RV dealership and asked for the Parts Department to see if they had heated water hoses in stock. We were in luck as they had a 12 foot and a 50 foot hose in stock. And so we set our GPS in Jerry, and off we went to Big Boys Toys.

Unfortunately the GPS we have in Jerry is old and doesn’t always lead us to the places that we punch into the GPS. We have a newer Garmin GPS we are using in Newman, that we should just move over to Jerry, which would resolve our old GPS issues, but we haven’t done that yet. Regardless, we ended up on a logging road, instead of at the ’Big Boys Toys’ RV dealership.

I punched the address for the dealership into WAZE and we did a big circle detour, but arrived at the dealership about 5 minutes later.

Why is it ‘Big Boy’s‘ instead of ‘Big Boy’s and Girl’s Toys’? I think this dealership needs some DIVERSITY training!

Everything for trailer and RV life!

When you have an RV, visiting one of these stores is like being a kid in a candy store!

Of course I found something else we needed in ’Big Boys Toys’! An insulated vent cover for the Fantastic Fan in the ceiling of Newman. Since we don’t need to turn the fans on this time of year, we have been stuffing pillows in the ceiling to keep the cold air from coming in through the fans. Now we have a properly insulated ceiling vent cover in the bathroom of Newman. No more cold toilet seat!!

I had wanted to go to Nanoose Bay for a hike today since we have never been able to get to the Southwest side of Nanoose Bay. Driving by on the main Hwy 19 towards Nanaimo, we could always see across the Bay, but I wanted to have a closer look of what the area looked like to see if we could find a trail to hike.

We headed down Garry Oak Drive until we found a place to park and decided to hike down the steep trail to the very rocky beach area.

As soon as we got down to the rocky shoreline, we saw that the water was an amazing shade of turquoise! What a stunning spot to stop, even if we didn’t have anywhere to hike.

At the bottom of Garry Oak Drive, Nanoose Bay.

Very treacherous rocks to walk on, but what amazing views!

A nice private beach and gorgeous turquoise water which comes in from the Salish Sea/Strait of Georgia.

Definitely a beautiful vista for this home!

Richard on the rocks! Behind Richard, across the Bay is the main Hwy 19 which goes down to Nanaimo and eventually turns into the 1 Hwy which leads to Victoria. The Bay behind Richard was something we could see from the highway, but never understood if there were houses, parks or trails on this side of the Bay.

Rocks in Nanoose Bay. Beautiful colours!

After shooting some stunning landscape photos, we hiked back up to Jerry and went looking for a trail to hike.

Not more than 3km down the road, we found Enos Lake Trail and decided to park and go for a hike.

Apparently Enos Lake is the only place in the world where the limnetic Enos Lake Stickleback are found. Because these three spine fish are endangered, there is a NO Fishing and a NO Swimming rule in place at this park. Enos Lake is 17 hectares long and 11 metres deep. Springtime is the best time to visit this park with plenty of wildflowers among the rocky bluffs, meadows and ponds such as white fawn Lily, Nuttails, Toothwort, and Red flowering Currant. Many songbirds make their home in this park as well such as Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Golden-crowned Kinglets, Chesnut-backed Chickadees and Orange-crowned Warblers. We didn’t see any flowers or wildlife today unfortunately in the park, although we did see quite a bit of snow, exposed tree roots and rocks on the trail! It was a difficult hike with the conditions on the trail today, combined with the change in elevation, as well as no directional signs!

The trail had a lot of elevation, combined with stones and slippery sections when the snow was present.

The trail from the parking lot led us mostly down hill and then we had this narrow, slippery plank to cross over a small stream. We knew starting off downhill on a trail meant we would be going uphill at the end of the hike, which is always challenging when we’re tired!

This sure didn’t look like a trail, but apparently it was the trail. We had to figure out where to hike since there were not many hikers out today on the trail, and there were no trail signs at all.

The little stream we crossed over turned into a little water fall and then we started to hear more rushing water, so we knew we were getting closer to a bigger waterfall.

The larger waterfall at Enos Lake park. We couldn’t get too close to the waterfall as the ground was snow covered and it was pretty slippery.

Enos Lake. The trail didn’t go anywhere near the Lake which is probably what they want, to keep people from swimming or hiking in the Lake, because of the endangered fish.

We kept hiking and got a bit lost frankly, trying to figure out our way back to the car. We ended up close to another ’no name’ Lake which was frozen over from the cold weather we had on the weekend.

Frozen ’no name’ lake.

Enos Lake trail had quite a few Arbutus trees. I love these trees!

Another common name for these Arbutus trees is ‘Madrone’ a Spanish word for the ‘strawberry tree’. The Arbutus bark is very rich in a substance used for tanning hides. The trees do not like shade, and generally occur in clearings or on open rocky bluffs with other species such as Garry oak or Douglas fir. The Arbutus tree’s flowers have a strong honey smell and are very attractive to bees, and fruit eating birds such as waxwings and robins. The bark of the Arbutus tree was used by the Indigenous people’s topically for sores and small wounds on the skin. Another use of the bark is to make a tannic, or astringent tea to smooth an upset stomach or to treat colds. The taste of the arbutus bark tea has been described as a combination of cinnamon, mushrooms and wood smoke. There are some chefs who will use the madrone bark tea to flavour risotto or as an ingredient in ice cream. Interesting.....I’m not sure I’m going to forage for any madrone bark to try making tea anytime soon, but its good to know what the art of possible is!

Which way should we go?

We eventually found our way back to Jerry. It was nice to get out on a beautiful day for a hike and before the hike ended, I had taken off my jacket and my toque. It was definitely a beautiful, sunny ‘warm’ day on the Island!

By now it was almost 2pm and we were getting hungry! We had brought some seedless red grapes to eat in Jerry, but that wasn’t cutting it. We needed some real food! What should we get for lunch? I suggested hamburgers. Richard felt like something a bit more exotic. Hmmm.....? Where should we go?!!

Mmmmm good! Hot miso soup and Korean bibimbap! We had visited this Korean restaurant in Parksville before and wanted this delicious dish again today!

The sun was shining as we sat in the Parksville Community Park by the Strait of Georgia/Salish sea, eating our lunch in Jerry and watching everyone walking their dogs by the sea.

Now this guy was a bit crazy! Not only was he wearing shorts for his walk today at +6C, but he was also in short sleeves! Everyone else walking along the sea in Parksville was bundled up to stay warm. There is always one in every crowd isn’t there?

We meandered our way home to Fanny Bay, looking at a few properties along our drive home.

When we arrived home Richard immediately went to install the heated water hose we were so anxious to try out. Richard couldn’t tell if the plug was working or not, so asked me to give him a small appliance to try the plug on our pedestal outside of Newman. I gave him my curling iron to try first!

The light on the curling iron did not come on when he plugged it in outside. So next I gave him my ‘happy’ UV light to try outside. Next thing I knew, Richard was back inside, frustrated because the light wouldn’t come on either. So tonight we are back to running the water in Newman, until Matt the owner of the RV park can come down tomorrow and take a look at our plug. Hopefully we can find a solution for our heated hose, since the hose is not returnable and we really would prefer to have the heated hose, than run the water all the time when its cold in Newman.

While Richard was outside trying to get the heated hose to work, I decided to make a banana, chocolate chip, cherry cake, to use up the leftover brown bananas! After such a late lunch, I think the banana cake is going to be our dinner, once I’ve finished the blog!

Yum!!!!! Homemade banana cake!

Tomorrow is our run up to Courtenay and Comox for my strength training and Osteopath. After all this hiking, I’m definitely ready to see Abbie again for some therapy!

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