Got Buoys? (West Coast Trail 2015 - Day 5)

Day 5 - Wednesday, August 25, 2015
Route: Tsuiat Falls (KM 25) to Michigan Creek (KM 12)
Distance: 13 km
Start Time: 10:15am

Unlike previous days, waking up was a little tough.  Our bodies were a little worn out and our energy levels weren’t as high, plus most of the boys were determined to finish all the liquor last night just to shed some weight.  But hey the sun was shining and we were more  than 2/3 of the way there!  Getting back to the trail, we definitely used our ladder climbing skills to good use with several flights ahead of us.  Once the group reached the top, it wasn’t too bad of a hike, the trail was relatively flat with a few obstacles such as the Klanawa River cable cart crossing.

We also found a few relics along the way such as the abandoned donkey engine (once used for hauling logs to construct the trail), a rusty anchor on the rocks, and a boiler from a steamboat shipwreck.

At the end of the day, the group reached Michigan Creek (named after the steamboat whose rusty boiler sits next to the camp).  This camp seems to stand out a little more than the rest due to the fact it’s littered with carved buoys. They are literally hung everywhere on site.  Since buoys and floats seem to wash up on shore throughout the trail, hiker’s tend to personalize their own as a way to signify their accomplishments of either finishing the trail or a rite of passage depending on which direction on the trail you’re headed too.  Plus since hiker’s aren't technically allowed to take anything from the trail, so it’s a symbolic way to say you were there. 

Seeing that this would be our last night, Brock took the opportunity to put the final touches on his hiking stick with a few significant markings such as 75 notches for the 75 km of the trail and a whale for the wildlife that we saw.  

With Brock also finishing up the “Furious 7” buoy from last night, what better way to keep up with tradition than to hang our “legacy” with the rest of the historic artifacts others have left behind…