Summer Hikes on Film

Sunshine Coast and Garibaldi Highlands

6 min read by Dmitri.
Published on . Updated on .
Kodak Portra 160 with Kyocera T-Proof (Yashica T5). Helm Creek Trail, Garibaldi.

British Columbia is a vast Canadian province. It can take multiple lifetimes to explore. Tempting, as it is as beautiful as it is expansive.

This summer, I visited a few nature spots with my wife and brother. We took the dogs with us to the camping grounds and easy hikes on Sunshine Coast. Our final trek across the Garibaldi Provincial Park range had to be pet-free.

Kodak Ektachrome 200 (expired in 1994, cross-processed in C-41) with Yashica T5. Saltery Bay, Sunshine Coast. The couple you see in the distance swam to a rock submerged by the high tide. Around that rock, there’s about two metres or six feet of water. And when the tide is low, the stone is nearly fully exposed.

Sunshine Coast.

The weather was excellent. The dogs loved the outdoors, of course.

Still, I felt quite tired by the end of this trip as it was the three of us with two dogs in a 2012 Mini Cooper and lots of time spent on the road (I was the driver). As with the walks, I really enjoyed the mountainous windy roads and the car felt incredible on the pavement for it was designed precisely for that. Still, 100% of my attention had always had to be on the road, even when I felt winded from carrying our older doggo in a backpack.

It was lovely to see Norah (the older doggo) prance happily into our apartment once we returned home. She enjoys pillows, warmth, and comfort.

Film Ferrania P30 with Yashica T5. Porpoise Bay Park, Sunshine Coast.

Throughout the summer, we were lucky not to have encountered the massive smoke from the forest fires up north. The air felt clear every day of our trips.

Garibaldi Highlands.

But the weather turned on us halfway up our most difficult trek from Cheakamus Lake to Singing Creek Camp Ground at Garibaldi National Park.

Loaded with tents, food, and two waterproof cameras, I was sweating profusely as we struggled up the seemingly infinite foresty hills. The rain, which started to drip on us forty minutes away from the camp, felt like a welcome relief. But the dampness soon became bothersome. Everything was wet. Not a single dry sock (all my fault, of course, as I forgot to wrap my backpack in the rain hood).

CineStill 800T with Yashica T5. Singing Creek Camp Ground, Garibaldi.

The dampness persisted the next morning and throughout the day, but the long walk across the serene alpine vistas served as a potent distraction.

CineStill 800T with Yashica T5. Garibaldi.

Despite the cold and the chronic attire moisture, my brother and I resolved to test the Nikonos V diving camera under the frigid blue waters of glacier lakes. Each dip left me shivering on the shore. Still, I did it more than once to get a few mediocre exposures. The best photo on that camera so far has been my brother’s portrait of me struggling to keep a breath in. It was cold but also felt like we had a lot of fun.

Lomography Color 800 with Nikonos V. Garibaldi lake.

Having taken the final nature’s ice bath, we had a quick bite of hot noodles with sausages and went on our way up in an attempt to catch a scenic view before the rain started pouring again.

JCH StreetPan with Yashica T5. Garibaldi.

The fog got thicker as we gained altitude, stripping our destination, Panorama Ridge, of its usual appeal. Instead of the expansive overlook of the deep-blue lake amongst giant snow-capped mountains, it was plumes of fog over the jagged rocks and distant trees that looked like thorns from afar.

JCH StreetPan with Yashica T5. Garibaldi.
JCH StreetPan with Yashica T5. Garibaldi.

Throughout this entire cold and foggy adventure, my brother rocked the strangest outfits to match the weather. Like this clear poncho on a bare chest:

JCH StreetPan with Yashica T5. Garibaldi.

We felt the weather getting worse as soon as we got to the summit. It was colder and darker by the minute. We couldn’t see much and it was time to go back to the camp.

Agfa Vista 200 with Yashica T5.

…Then, sleep in a damp tent, wake up, pack up, hike down the mountain to the parking lot, and drive home.

Agfa Vista 200 with Yashica T5.