We spent the whole month of August exploring Vancouver Island…. well it turns out the Island is actually really big and we only managed to see a small part of it, but we’ll definitely be going back. Right at the top of Vancouver Island, a short boat ride out from Telegraph Cove, is the tiny little Compton Island. We were lucky to work for a great new Whale watching camp called Orca Dreams for an unforgettable 4 weeks. Hearing the blows of Humpback Whales while working in the kitchen, from our tent at night, or while relaxing on the beach became a very normal occurrence, along with Seals, Dolphins and Porpoise playing right off our private beach. Reports of Orcas nearby sent everyone rushing for the boat to get that bucket list experience ticked off, and the rare sighting of Black bears, and Grizzlies in the wild was even more than we could have ever expected.
Besides all of this amazing wild life, some of our favourite encounters were of the Human kind. Every four days we met 10 new faces, names and stories to learn. Beautiful BC’s wildlife brought together people from all over the world, people from different walks of life that all had that passion to venture all the way to the top of Vancouver Island to see Killer Whales. There were many travelminded people that had never seen Orcas before, a few BC locals that had spent many summers in the area, a couple of guests that were content with relaxing at camp and than there was Pieter, the Orca obsessed butcher from Belgium.
After four weeks in the wild we slowly made our way south and back to the mainland. On our way down we decided to give hitch hiking a try (inspired by Hanna who has travelled her way around Europe and Canada for the last few years, and JD who hitched his way from the top to bottom of Africa). We took 6 different rides and stopped along the way for nights in Cumberland, Courtney, Nanaimo, Cowichan Bay and Victoria. Each friendly person that stopped and helped us on our way was great, we had a short time to learn about each other and were reminded each time how generous and friendly the people of Vancouver Island are. We were also welcomed into the homes of a couple of different guests from Orca Dreams and treated like family. Hanna told us that she had total faith in Humans from her hitch hiking adventures and already we have received such unconditional kindness from strangers that it’s easy to see why.