Sunday, November 25, 2012

Adventure 45- Wildwood

It had been months since Natalie and I had been out on two wheels together, so strange since we rode constantly all spring and summer. With the change in the weather and with all the hunting, gathering and processing that we have been doing, cycling adventures have been on the back burner. My lack of lone cycling has probably contributed to this as well. Very little riding in my life as of late, and that will probably continue until February, when I start commuting to work again and battling the snow.
Inky Caps
This week we ventured out to Dove Creek to check out a new to us area called the Wildwood Interpretive Forest. Located on Piercy road approximately two kilometers from either the Inland Island Highway exit or the four way stop at Condensory road, this interpretive forest is 682 acres in size and contains second growth Douglas Fir, hemlock and spruce trees. I am a little disappointed that our adventure did not go as planned and we must return to this park better prepared for the weather.

We needed to visit Dove Creek to see friends Allen and Heather McWilliam at Tannadice Farm. As many of you know I had purchased a side of their wonderful pork several weeks ago, butchering it from a whole side in my kitchen. What a cool experience for me and just today my first attempt at creating homemade bacon turned out very well. I also had promised my sister that we would meet her out at the farm so she could pick up some beautiful meat. She has adopted the Paleo lifestyle and wants to avoid shopping for meat in the grocery store. So after confusing set of instructions from Google maps she finally arrived at the farm and loaded up with protein. Natalie and I had a nice visit with Heather and picked up some pepperoni for the road.
The "trail"
I took the long way out of Dove Creek, down along the Tsolum river on the hunt for eggs. I found a cooler with six dozen in it at Rusty Gate Meadows, $3.75 a dozen. Add that one to my list of spots to check when I need the chicken hens marvelous gift. I pulled three dozen and pushed twelve dollars in the money box. I feel that four dollars is a great price and it is easier to send the extra quarter that carry around so much change. We rolled back up Piercy road and parked along side the road the the trail head.
Nice grassy puddle
Natalie argued with me before we left about wearing warm clothes, especially gloves. She decided that, with no worries, her hands would be plenty warm and she needed to bring nothing. I disagreed and warned her. Alas she did not believe her dad and brought no gloves or mitts of any kind. Silly girl. She wore her merino gear so the rest of her was warm, but having cold hands can easily ruin an adventure.We began the ride through a mature forest with decent sized trees and pretty under story, and a little bridge over a creek. We happened upon a fork, with my choice being left, hers being right. Guess who won? Yep the girl. Unaware of the trail situation in the area I agreed and we rolled down hill along a road bed. I didn't realize that this was outside of the park and this is actually a service road for the gas pipeline that continues north and south along the B.C. Hydro transmission tower right away. The coast down the hill was pretty easy and un-interesting. Soon little Miss Natalie's hands were like icicles. The day was below freezing and we were not in the sun what so ever. Her folly was assuming it would be warm because the sun was shining. Being in the truck made it appear to be toasty. Nothing was further from the truth. We originally agreed to come back up the hill and take the other branch, but by the time we came back up the hill she was finished. Too cold and apparently tired(what else is new), so back to the truck.
Hemlock on a nurse stump
We loaded up and drove into Courtenay. Natalie wanted to stop at the Comox Valley Farmers Market and procure a bottle of love, namely some Island Soda Works product from our friend Mandolyn. I dropped her off and parked the truck. Natalie had a mini adventure shopping in the Native Sons Hall alone with the hundreds of others packed in. She did well and came out with two bottles of delicious beverage.
So thirsty, must have soda....
It was a brief adventure, as most have seemed to be lately, but we did get to stop at a new location, visit with friends and family and support local businesses. In my books that is a perfect morning regardless of anything else. Find Adventure.

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