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Campbell River – From Sea to Sky

Guest Blog by: Micheal Hack

Growing up in Campbell River I knew there were many things to do in the outdoors, but I didn’t realize how spoiled we truly are. After high school I moved across the country, living in Ontario for university, then bouncing around cities, including Vancouver and Calgary. I learned that each city and area offered different experiences and vibes, I learned what real Canadian winters were about and I learned that the tiny little town on the ocean I grew up in was special. 

The longer I lived away, the greater perspective I gained for what makes Campbell River unique. I found myself drawn to the diversity of outdoor experiences, the mountains, the forests, the lakes, the ocean, the islands, the beaches, I could go on…with each place offering different activities; hiking, biking, paddle boarding, again… I could go on. 

This spring I got to participate in a range of these experiences first hand, I spent a weekend with Destination Campbell River and other locals who have chosen to live here for the lifestyle. We started by going up with 49North Helicopters at dawn and landed on a peak in the nearby Coastal Mountains. Pretty, freaking, awesome! The peak had epic views of the Discovery Islands, back towards Campbell River, and down inlets reaching into the coastal mountains. The mountains protrude out of the ocean all the way up to 2,100m (~7,000ft), the prominence of these peaks are equal to or greater than most of the Rockies, a point which is not lost on you, when you’re standing on top of one looking down on the Pacific Ocean.

After taking it all in, we took off and flew down, and through channels between the discovery Islands, seeing little hidden getaways tucked away on all the different islands. We got up close and personal and landed on an island beach, ate oysters and shared stories with a local island legend, hopped back into the chopper and were back in Campbell River by lunchtime. About as Sea to Sky as a morning gets, but technically we didn’t get out on the water…

To solve this dilemma, the next day we got out on the water with 50 North Adventures to tour through the Discovery Islands on their rocketship of a boat. Being able to experience the same area as the day before from a different perspective was pretty neat. We cruised through the islands, stopped to paddle board in the calm glassy waters of the Copeland Islands, tossed fishing lines in and played a few salmon. Each day on the water can be catered to your interests, dragging lines to fish, searching for whales and other wildlife or simply cruising to new islands and coastlines. We docked the boat at one of the countless waterfront restaurants in the area and walked up for a patio lunch, basking in the sun, we shared stories and plans for future endeavours in our local backyard and our admiration and gratitude for the place we get to call home. 

Overall, it was an amazing weekend that highlighted what Campbell River has to offer. Contrary to popular belief, these experiences aren’t limited to just the summer months but can be had year round. This was a weekend in March, but it could have been July, or September,  I guess that’s why they call it ‘Island Time’.

To recreate this adventure for yourself check out our ultimate guys weekend itinerary here