Part 3 - Year three youth conquer overnight solo on final expedition

This year the Wilderness School Year Three youth spent their final expedition exploring the magic of the Clayoquot Sound. Launching from Grice Bay, just southeast of Tofino, the group kayaked over to Meares Island for the first stop on their 10-day journey.


Waking up the first morning surrounded by old growth cedar and blankets of fog energised the group, pumping them up for the adventure to come. A plan to circumnavigate Meares Island with stops on Vargas and Flores islands was hatched and the group set off.

The beauty of Clayoquot is that there are many options to camp and change routes if necessary. This proved to be very important on this trip as Day 3 brought tricky weather. Rain and wind picked up and the group of seasoned Wilderness School participants battened down the hatches in Cable Bay for three days.


Cable Bay, with its beautiful stretch of sandy beach, was the site for overnight solos. For the past three years, the youth have been honing their tarp building skills for this final challenge. Armed with a tarp, sleeping bag, sleeping mat and experience, the youth headed out to their own piece of beach to camp out for the night. The rain let up long enough for them to build a cozy shelter. The morning brought tales of adventure, fun and pride, as the youth shared stories of making it through the night in not-so-pleasant weather.


We finished the last days of the expedition with calm seas, sunshine, and the completion of paddling around Meares with a stop at the new Kakawis campsite at the base of Lone Cone Mountain. Woken up by the sound of feral cows walking through our campsite, the group packed up and headed to Tofino harbour to complete their adventure.


– Story shared by Sylvia Storry, community development coordinator