Preparing for our trip to Haida Gwaii

As our time in Tofino is coming to a close, we are getting ready for our next adventure – 2 months living in the van in Haida Gwaii, studying at the Haida Gwaii Institute (HGI). We will be attending a field school at the HGI called ‘Plants, People, & Place,‘ where we will take four courses between May 9th to June 30th.

A couple of months ago, before we got the official go-ahead that the program was running, we had booked our ferries all the way from Vancouver Island to Haida Gwaii. We are taking two ferries to get up to Skidegate – the first being a 22 hour ferry from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert; and the second being an 8 hour ferry from Prince Rupert to Skidegate. Needless to say, it will be a long 30 hours on ferries – we’ll definitely need some book or podcast recommendations. Since we are driving our van up to Haida Gwaii, the van will be accompanying us on the ferry. Thankfully we had booked these ferries early, as they were already booking up quite fast for this time!

The next step of preparing for our trip was securing a place to live – or in our case park our home! We were sent a package of housing options from the HGI. None of the options were offering a parking space of hookup for an RV or van. However, we reached out to a bunch of the contacts given and asked if they would be open to sharing their space with us (particularly the shower, laundry, and bathroom). Luckily there was one lady, Jamie, who was super keen to let us park on her property. We now have a place to park our van and it is conveniently located to the town, to the school, and to the grocery store!

The last, and I think some of the most exciting things left to plan are the road trip up to the ferry, and the trips we’ll go on when we’re there. We already have a few things planned for the road trip:

  • Visiting our friend Vanessa in Campbell River
  • Stopping in Telegraph Cove and camping there for a night
  • Elk Falls Suspension Bridge

Because we booked our ferry so early and didn’t know the exact program dates, we have about a week off until the program starts – which gives us a bit of time to plan a little surf trip. I have done a little bit of research and it looks like there is some good surfing up near Masset in Naikoon Provincial Park. So we are planning to take the van with us up there for a couple days to surf, explore, and relax.

If anyone has any suggestions of other places to stop along the way or things to do in Haida Gwaii, we’d love to hear them! I am hoping to invest in a good camera (digital this time) so I can document all of these adventures and post them to this blog.

I suppose the actual LAST thing we have to prepare for this trip is packing up our life here in Tofino and moving most of it to either Victoria and Vancouver, while only bringing the ‘essentials’ with us…who knows, the van might be stuffed!

Either comment below on this post or direct-message us if you have any suggestions!

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