To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Jordan Oram's picture

The other day, my travels took me to the West Coast of Canada’s rainforest. I went to college in Victoria, the Capital of British Columbia, a number of years ago and return fairly often to visit friends, and my Father, who call the region home. So it was that last week I found myself waking up to an early morning flurry of texts from my frequent photoadventure collaborators Karsten Klawitter and Nicole Barrette with an invitation to head out of town, to the west along the coast, into the Rainforest Kingdom: more specifically, to hike various levels of visible trail to Peden Lake and Peden Bluffs in Sooke BC.

Conversation en route switches back and forth from future plans, to past stories of adventures, and brief forays into comments about how new technology has changed how we listen to music on our trips, but still end up playing something by Counting Crows at least once.

At the parking lot, we discuss outfit choices, adorn ourselves with boots, sort out backpacks, and set out into the woods, passing under fallen trees acting gate keeper, and move uphill to the sound of a waterfall.

 

A Damp Approach: To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

A Damp Approach

 

A Forest Gateway To Adventure. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

A Forest Gateway To Adventure

 

Enjoying a Waterfall View. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Enjoying a Waterfall View

 

The Sooke Flowline is an abandoned concrete aqueduct that once served the city of Victoria and the town/region of Sooke. It was opened in 1915, and the final section ceased use in 2009. Our path takes us over it. Our return path will take us along it for a brief meander. But first we’ve a lake to find, rock to scurry, and bluffs to look out from!

 

Karsten explores. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Karsten explores

 

History in the form of a water pipeline.To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

History in the form of a water pipeline

 

Peden Lake has a small research cabin built at it. Other than minor graffiti, and some detritus, it would serve as a competent shelter if needed. A fibreglass canoe with tiny wee paddles also offers an alternate distraction/method of exploration, but we opt for a brief snack, some rehydration, and then continue on our way upwards as the dark clouds seem to draw more near.

 

Water over root. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Water over root

 

Peden Lake - cabin and lake. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Peden Lake - cabin and lake

 

Feet and Fungus. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Feet and Fungus

 

We break above the treeline and continue to seek out an old path through the moss that carpets the glaciated stone. Survey tape adorns trees branches, sometimes it hints at the trail location from where it deteriorates fallen on the ground. Eventually we make it to the top and are greeted by a view over the forest to the Strait of Juan de Fuca and beyond to Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. We’re also greeted by wind and the rain that has decided to cool us off.

 

Crossing the water. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Crossing the water

 

Further up. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Further up

 

Through the woods. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Through the woods

 

Wet moss covered terrain to a view. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Wet moss covered terrain to a view

 

A pause and a stretch. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

A pause and a stretch

 

From Peden Bluffs. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

From Peden Bluffs

 

After a few minutes appreciation for the moment, we find a trail more suited to a wet descent, away from the slippery exposed rock, and reenter the shelter of the forest. Sharing stories of our own past trips, that challenged us in various ways, we make it back to the parking lot roughly four hours after starting out.

 

An alternate wet descent. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

An alternate wet descent

 

Forest shelters. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Forest shelters

 

Terrific terrain. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Terrific terrain

 

A route hiked. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

A route hiked

 

Rest. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Rest

 

With the tailgate down, we catch our breath and add another adventure to our list of shared experiences. Followed, of course, by our traditional sushi feast.

 

Recovery. To Peden Lake and Beyond: A Photoadventure

Recovery

 

 

Jordan Oram is the Photography Editor for Wandering Educators.

He has a passion for encouraging and empowering others to realize the combinations of their unique passions and strengths. In April of 2012, with $250 to his name, he travelled more than 10,000 km, over 7 months, across Canada and back, which will be the subject of his soon to be released ebook. Since then he's continued to travel around to where he's invited, with no home of his own, to encourage people to rock out their awesomeness. Find him at www.maplemusketeer.com

 

All photos courtesy and copyright Jordan Oram

 

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