Totem pole, Stanley Park

We don’t tend to focus on tourist attractions when we travel – but we did enjoy seeing some of the replica totem poles in Stanley Park.

Totem

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Tofino Coast (2)

We loved our time on Vancouver Island and this shot shows just how beautiful it can look when the sun glistens off the water.  We went out on a boat from Tofino and saw some fabulous auks including Tufted Puffin and Rhinoceros Auklet.  But, the wildlife highlight was the moment, first thing in the morning, when we looked out from our balcony to see grey (or possibly humpback) whales swimming past.

Coast2

Hidden Cove, Vancouver Island

As we drove up the long track to Hidden Cove Lodge and, just as we first caught sight of the lodge, we also saw…..one adult black bear and two black bear cubs.  They were only about 100 feet from us.  We watched in awe and forgot all about winding down the window to try and get a photo.

Cabin2

The next day we headed off to nearby Telegraph Cove.  After getting quite close to black bears we were excited about the prospect for seeing more wildlife – but nothing could have prepared us for what happened next.

We sat on some rocks looking over to some of the smaller islands between the mainland and Vancouver Island.  In the distance we could see numerous killer whales arching out of the water, presumably chasing salmon.  Then, suddenly, an otter sprang out of the water about 20 yards from us with a live eel in its mouth.  Over the next 10 minutes it proceeded to eat this eel, seemingly unperturbed by our presence – though I was too worried about scaring him off to unpack the camera.

 

 

 

 

 

Desolation Sound

On our first night out of Vancouver we stayed in this lodge at Desolation Sound.

 

We saw kingfishers, woodpeckers and sapsuckers…but I failed to catch any on film.  The only shot I did get was of a tiny squirrel – the quality is so poor I can’t tell if it’s an American Red or a Douglas!

squirrel

Still, it was a great start to our wilderness holiday!