Monday 15th January
It was a much earlier start than I was used to on Monday morning!
I joined another one of the hostel’s Day Tours where they take you to Whistler for the day (a town North of Vancouver)
It started at 8am so I rolled out of bed around 6:45am. Just enough time to have a shower, wash my hair, do my make-up and have something to eat from the breakfast downstairs.
The tour was organised by a tour group called ‘Moose’ who do adventure travel in Canada for students and backpackers, I think it cost about $50 which was pretty good as we had a few stops along the way and it was nice having someone tell us a little about the areas we were driving through.
It takes approximately an hour and a half to get to Whistler from Downtown Vancouver so definitely bring something to read or listen to on the way up if you’re planning to take a bus or a shuttle.
Our first stop on the drive up was to Porteau Cove Provincial Park to have a look at the view over Howe Sound and to the Mountains in the distance.
Interesting fact: Our tour guide told us that an old ship had been sunk in the water to attract marine life and for diver’s to practice their diving. Especially for Police Divers that have to search for bodies in the water as their training.
It doesn’t really snow in Vancouver so I had yet to feel the extreme cold while I’m here, however at this National Park I definitely felt a chill!
I didn’t see anyone camping at the park while I was there, but there are 16 walk-in campsites available about 5 minutes from the parking lot. From what I know, most of the campsites are small, ocean front sites with no picnic tables or anything and only pit toilets. Definitely not my type of camping experience haha.
We then got to stop at Shannon Falls Provincial Park which is adjacent to Highway 99. The falls are composed of lots of cliffs rising 335 metres above the Highway, making it the third highest falls in the province.
When we walked to the falls, there was a scattering of snow everywhere which was pretty 🙂
The next stop was to a little look-out spot to take some pictures of the mountain’s.
To be honest, I’m not even sure where we where but it might have been about half way up to Whistler by this stage.
They saved the best park for last – Brandywine Falls!
About 20 minutes away from Whistler, we saw the most amazing waterfall and winter wonderland.
As soon as we hopped out of the shuttle, I walked into knee deep snow and across icy paths to get to this waterfall. Unfortunately it was a little too icy for me and I slipped 😦
To get the best views of the waterfall, you have to walk to the viewpoint which also gives you really nice views of Daisy Lake and the surrounding mountains.
As there was snow everywhere, it all looked really pretty, nethertheless – very cold!
By the time we got to Whistler, it was about 11:30am.
The ski-fields were busy, there were people at the restaurants having lunch and it was of course – cold!
Our group kind of split up and went our separate ways so I walked around Whistler Village for about an hour looking at the shops and taking pictures of the pretty hotels.
This is going to sound super geeky, but as I don’t really ski or snowboard (and from what I understand it’s super expensive to learn at Whistler) I ended up walking past a library so warmed up in there for about an hour. I had brought my Kindle with me and as I was already in the middle of a book I found a chair to read. There were quite a few people sitting around reading so it was nice to sit inside and keep warm while looking at all the snow outside.
As we had all afternoon in Whistler (probably a little too long to be honest if you’re not skiing on the fields) I did a lot of walking around. By the afternoon I had found this really cute Candy Apple store that just had sooo many candy apples and chocolates.
I don’t think I’ve ever had a proper Candy Apple in my life so after much consideration, I decided on a N.Y Cheesecake Caramel apple which I ate while watching the skiiers come off the mountain at the end of the day.
As I’d been sitting down for awhile, I was shivering!
Thankfully it was time to go back to the bus and head back to the hostel.
The drive home was a bit long, it probably doesn’t help that the days here are so short as it gets dark around 4:30pm so it felt like 9pm by the time we got back.
The girls who I’d been hanging out with all week were at the Hostel Bar so I quickly ordered a drink and sat with them.
Beer Pong was the activity of the night so we all signed up in good spirits to win, unfortunately Aussie and I lost the first round so we were eliminated at the very beginning 😦
That didn’t stop us from drinking though. We had about a pitcher of alcohol between us and then shared another one when we played Beer Pong. All the mixing on the drinks made Sarah a bit hungover the next day!
Till next time!