Sunday, August 31, 2008

Biking Vancouver Island, part II

The idea was to get on the TCT at Cowichan Lake, and then bike down to the Kinsol trestle, doing the upper half of the section we started per the map here...
...but we take a wrong turn just 200m down the track, by not following to the letter the instructions on the sign.
Turns out there are TWO railbeds leading out of the Lake Cowichan community, the northern one an old abandoned CP railbed, and the southern one the TCT (goes through a park, with trestles, etc).

If you get on this old railway bridge, you are on the wrong path!
We end up on the CP railbed, which follows the highway to Duncan and is rather unexciting, not very well-maintained and backing onto dumpy backyards (trailers, dead cars, garbage...). It takes us about an hour to figure out that we are on the wrong track, but by then we are committed. Luckily, after lunch the scenery improves; the railbed leaves the highway and the dumpiness with it. We pass through Paldi, with its old water tower and Sikh Temple (!).

The forest is lovely and green, no traffic, and NO ATVs! Yay! The trail is muddy and this makes for interest for the kids, you can't just put it on autopilot. We finally end up in North Cowichan, at Sherman Road, quite near HWY 1, after a 3.5 hour ride. Consensus: more fun than yesterday!

And, bonus, we still have the "real" TCT to explore for another day!

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