Sharon’s ACL surgery this past May has kept her off her mountain bike, but she has resumed commuting to work and doing easy urban rides. With summer coming to a close we wanted to get out for an small adventure that her knee could handle so we decided to camp overnight at a local beach campground.
Island View Beach is ~20kms from our house along the Lochside Regional Trail. There is a pretty steep climb to get to and from the beach, but other than that it’s a flat route.
To keep things simple I just loaded up my cargo bike with the bare essentials like: tent, sleeping bags, chairs, beer and ice. 😉
I didn’t bother with a stove or food. We just stopped along the way and ate an early supper.
We found several empty tent spots at the campground and settled in with a cold drink to celebrate the last sunny days of summer.
Since we weren’t counting grams I brought a roomy 2 person tent which was quite luxurious.
Fruit is in season on Vancouver Island so Sharon started foraging for a snack.
The beach was a short ride from our tent so we cruised over there to chill for a bit.
It was a typical Vancouver Island beach – super nice and totally empty.
With the sun setting we headed back to camp to get cozy our sleeping bags.
We woke to persistent and sometimes down right heavy rain. I fired up my smartphone and was happy to see the weather report was saying it wasn’t raining. Too bad the local clouds didn’t get the memo!
We packed up quickly and hit the road. Starting with a long steep climb to get away from the beach. On a different day I might have grumbled about a rough start to the day, but since we were cold and wet a strenuous climb was welcome as were our rising core temperatures!
We stopped about halfway home for some hot tea and snacks. The rain went nuts while we were inside so it proved a good time to take a break. I like tea in the morning, but this pot seemed almost magical – I couldn’t get to the bottom of it no matter how many cups of tea I drank. I eventually gave up!
The rain had pretty much given up by the time we left the tea shop. That made for pleasant riding the rest of the way.
The Lochside Trail is quite scenic and given it was early on a wet long weekend morning we had the place to ourselves.
This was only Sharon’s 2nd ever bike camping experience and she had a good time. I think we’ll use this combo of bikes and loads in the future on tours as it resulted in quite comparable speeds on the bikes – especially on the climbs. I don’t mind doing shorter tours and with a heavier load I get a good workout anyways. Plus we can have as many luxuries as we can bother to pack on the cargo bike.