Mushrooms of the West Coast was an introductory identification and foraging class taught by Andy MacKinnon and Erin Feldman out of the Tofino Botanical Garden Ecolodge. These annual workshops are hosted by Raincoast Education Society and have now been offered on Thanksgiving weekend for several years in a row.
This summer, I spent my time in Tofino on a social media fast working on the I Digher, a 1961 decommissioned gillnetter with a built-in living space. I purchased the old boat last summer, with the intention of using it primarily as a living space when in Tofino (writing and surfing), and secondarily as a vehicle for exploration, fishing, and adventure for next summer (2017) – a dream I have had for as long as I remember.
Campfire Ghost Story: Keeha Beach Vancouver Island
This is a personal account of an unexplained experience I had on Keeha Beach on the west coast of Vancouver Island during the late 90s. Keeha (sometimes Keaha) Beach is part of “the Graveyard of the Pacific,” a stretch of water that has claimed thousands of vessels and lives. To the south of the beach is Pachena Point, where people have reported seeing the ghost ship SS Valencia, and to the north is an abandoned First Nation village some have claimed is haunted as well. Many people have claimed to have had “spiritual” experiences here.
Towards the end of the video I also share the release date of my upcoming book!
The 25-foot Amanda Anne plows through the frigid February waters of the Juan De Fuca Strait. Somewhere in the darkness ahead of us are the islands habituated by a wolf many in the Songhees First Nation believe is sacred.
Campers were the first to report a lone wolf on Discovery Island, east of Victoria, in 2012. Conservation officers dismissed the sightings as mistaken identity. Perhaps a dog had been abandoned on the island? While coastal wolves have been known to swim short distances, it seemed unlikely that this one would have swam the five km. from the city of Victoria.
However, Songhees First Nations members and conservation officers have since confirmed that the skittish animal is a coastal wolf. Discovery Island is part marine provincial park, part Songhees reserve land, but the wolf has also been spotted on various other islands nearby, including First Nations reserve lands such as the Chatham Islands. It has been dubbed Staqeya by the Songhees, which means “wolf” in their Coast Salish Dialect.