Posted on 19/05/2013 at 12:05 under Canada, 2012/2013
After leaving Nelson I headed north up along Kootenay Lake. As the weather and the scenery were both picture perfect I decided to camp for the first time this year and to give my new tent a whirl. This turned out not to be my most successful camping experience. Although the rec site was in a nice spot, there wasn’t really anywhere particularly suitable to put a tent! I selected a rare piece of flat(ish) ground but it was too rocky to use tent pegs so I had use rocks to pin it down. After winning this battle and then climbing in to my little one man tent I discovered an hour later that my inflatable mattress had a leak. This meant that I was now lying on the rocky floor. I re-inflated the mattress, which I knew was futile and after another hour was back on the floor so I abandoned camp at midnight and hiked back to sleep in comfort in the van!
Posted on 11/05/2013 at 15:05 under Canada, 2012/2013
Leaving Hope I had the choice of two highways – the 5: an express route towards Kamloops or the 3: a slower, scenic drive into the Okanagon. Not really much of a choice! On highway 3 I passed the “Big Slide” – the biggest landslide in Western Canada before driving through Manning Provincial Park.
Posted on 04/05/2013 at 14:05 under Canada, 2012/2013
For my last night with Richard and Karina we went out for Thai food before playing some board games with a bottle of wine. A very nice way to end my time in Comox with good friends, before an early start the next day to get the ferry to the mainland.
I was heading to Squamish but first stopped off at Capilano suspension bridge in North Vancouver. As well as a pretty impressive suspension bridge they have a “canopy walk” where you walk high up in the trees and a “cliff walk” where you walk on a platform around a vertical rock face.
Posted on 29/04/2013 at 12:04 under Running
It’s been eight weeks now since I injured my knee and things are improving, but i’m still taking things easy. After seven weeks I was starting to get concerned – I was still experiencing a strange sensation when doing anything slightyl strenuous, no pain as such but definitely a little discomfort. I expressed my concern to the running club in Comox via their forum and another member, who also happens to be a doctor gave me some reassuring words that it didn’t sound like a permanant injury and that things would improve. He also recommended that I go to see a physio to confirm the injury and to seek advice – which I did.
Was I was glad that I did! This is my second ever visit to a physitherapist and it was another great experience. Explaining the injury, my concerns and the fact that I was just about to leave for a big road trip the physiotherapist was able to assess my knee and confirm that I was suffering from Patellofemoral pain syndrome (AKA ‘Runner’s Knee’). He explained that the injury was caused by an imbalance in strength in my quad muscles, which was pulling the knee to one side and causing pain when moving.
Posted on 23/04/2013 at 12:04 under Canada, 2012/2013
Well the mini road trip is over and I am now back in Comox to take stock, tweak a few things with the van and get ready for setting off on my big cross Canada trip. It’s an exciting time for me and also a little scary. This also marks the last time I will be in Comox during my time in Canada and I am going to have to say goodbye to a lot of awesome people – though i’m sure not for good. I have been here for nine months now and have had a fantastic time, largely due to the great people I have met and two Canadian roommates in particular: who I owe a lot of this enjoyment to.
Since my last post I travelled back down island at a lesisurely pace, taking in a few sights along the way.
Posted on 17/04/2013 at 16:04 under Canada, 2012/2013
For the last nine days I have been exploring North Vancouver Island in the van as a sort of ‘mini’ road trip – to both test out the van setup and to see what the rest of the island has to offer. The further you go up the island the less people there are so I had been looking forward to seeing the ‘wild’ part of the island – and so far it hasn’t disappointed.
Posted on 08/04/2013 at 11:04 under Canada, 2012/2013
The van has really come together in the last two weeks which has largely been down to Hilary, Richard’s mum and her amazing sewing skills. When a couple of months back I mentioned that foam covers would have cost more than the foam itself (which isn’t cheap you know) Hilary kindly volunteered to sew something together. If only she knew what she was getting herself in for!
She also managed to locate me some old sheets for the covers – some red and white bedsheets and as we were measuring up she jokingly mentioned that we could make the Canadian flag with these colours. Well I thought that sounded like a brilliant idea and with minimal grovelling she told me that if I could make a maple leaf paper template big enough then she would do the rest! Using almost all of my computer/printing skills I managed the template and Hilary worked her magic. Plain covers alone were no simple task, because of my design there needed to be four individual covers with velcro on the bottom… which now needed a flag positioned across them!
Posted on 05/04/2013 at 21:04 under Running
Just a little update on my running situation – it has been nearly four weeks since my last run due to my knee injury. Around ten days ago I attempted a very short, easy run but my knee didn’t feel strong enough and I ended up walking back the last half. While the knee is improving slowly, I don’t want to start running again until I feel it is ready – so after that run I decided that I had to rule myself out of the Juan de Fuca run I have been training so hard for. I knew it was the smart decision, this is too big a hole in my training and there wouldn’t be enough time to get my body ready for that kind of distance before I leave Vancouver Island.
It was a sad moment for me telling Pat that I wasn’t going to be able to make the run. Since the injury I have gone from feeling frustrated and angry at myself, then calm and patient to concerned at how long the recovery process is taking. My main focus at the moment it giving the knee the time is needs to heal so it doesn’t affect the kinds of activities I have planned for my road trip – mainly hiking and trail running. So this means not doing anything that will strain the knee. I am also taking Glucosamine Chondroitine supplements which Dave recommended to me, as it is good for the joints and especially cartilage. I am hoping the end is in sight and I won’t have lost too much of my fitness by the time I am able to run again.
Posted on 29/03/2013 at 19:03 under Canada, 2012/2013
I have been back in Comox a few days now and as well as catching up with a few friends I have also made some good progress on the van. I picked up the custom foam sections I had ordered which really transforms the van into a cozy camper (I am currently writing this while sitting on the now foam covered bench in the van) and I have sorted the blinds, which I thought were going to be a lot more complicated than they were.
The bench, now with foam (foam covers to follow!)
Posted on 20/03/2013 at 14:03 under Canada, 2012/2013
The last three weeks have flown past and my time on Saltspring Island has been unforgettable. It has been as much of a retreat as it has been work – aided by having my own getaway cabin and gourmet food served down at the house! I have been working 3-4 hours a day on the farm 5 days a week. This has consisted of odd jobs (ranging from fixing sheep feeders to building large greenhouse walls), feeding the sheep and chickens as well as chopping, cutting and stacking wood…. a lot of wood!
During my time off I have been exploring the island on foot and in the van, relaxing in the cabin and also doing a little work – a nice mix of a little freelance and working on my own projects. I even did some paid web development work for my hosts who needed a helping hand with a website they had made!