Sea to Sky Highway.

Trip Start Aug 25, 2013
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Trip End Oct 12, 2013


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Where I stayed
Whistler Vacation Club at Twin Peaks

Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Tuesday, September 17, 2013

We were on the road to Whistler at 10am, along the Sea to Sky Highway (Highway 99).

Our first stop was at Provincial Marine Park – Porteav Cove – situated on the most southerly fjord, the park features a picnic ground/campsite with views over Howe Sound to the mountains beyond. A few old ships have been sunk to attract marine life, to provide interest for scuba divers, after seeing the sea life and corals at the Vancouver aquarium; surprisingly I would be confident to say it would be a very good place for a close to the city dive.

I took your suggestion Andrew (thank you), we went to the Britannia Mine Museum, and I am embarrassed to say I learnt more on the tour about mining copper than I ever did working in the industry. We agree it was very well done.  The Britannia was once the largest producer of copper in the British Empire during its operation (1904 to 1974) producing more than 50 million tons of ore.  The tour started with a train trip into the mineshafts with explanation of how the shafts were built, the change of work equipment, including how light was used to assist the workers and then the final production information. 

A short stop at Shannon Falls followed, the third highest falls in the province.

For lunch we stopped at Tim Horton's (well known hockey player) – Canada’s favourite coffee house – it’s a drive thru – and sells nicer Doughnuts than Krispy Kreme (hard to believe hey).    A big variety of soup and bagels are big over here, I’m guessing because of the cold weather.

Half way along the highway is the township Squamish, and we stop at the largest collection of Western Canada’s heritage railway equipment, we view a roundhouse and many heritage locomotives and railcars restored.   There were a number of volunteers at the park, it was nice to see them all working on the old trains, an interest/hobby that will fade with the younger generation no doubt.  Grandfather we wished you were here with us, the park had model trains too!

We drove past the The Stawamus Chief (often referred to as simply The Chief), it’s a granite monolith that claims to be the second largest in the world, towering  over 700 m (2,297 ft) above the waters of nearby Howe Sound. The Squamish, indigenous people from the area, consider the Chief to be a place of spiritual significance. Nearby there is Bald Eagle viewing areas also, in the winter there is over 200 to be seen at one time however we didn’t see anything, but again could only smell the salmon dying after spawning, it’s very fishy stinky.

Our last stop was the grand finale – magnificent Brandywine Falls, just downstream from the falls is Daisy Lake.

We arrive in the quaint resort town of Whistler at 4pm.  Whistler has a local population of about 10,000 people and a rotating transient population of seasonal workers.  We found the Aussies! There are a few that work here.

Our accommodation is so handy to the village, a warm and cosy feel, with our own fireplace.

To get a lay of the land, we collect the hire car - first go at driving on the wrong! side of the road.  I've got this system of tying a hair band around my right finger so tight my finger feels like it will fall off, so I constantly remember what side of the road I must stay on!    Don't laugh or judge - it's harder than you think and especially when turning across traffic.   Taking a drive around was good, we ended up lost at Lost Lake!  Beautiful lake and facilities anyway, in the winter it is used for cross country skiing trails and later on we found out the lake in the summer is the only place for nude bathing.  We were in luck, late afternoon and chilly, so nothing surprised us that was bare bar the bear warning signs.
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