The Lighthouse Country Regional Trail and The Widow Badass

Today I had the pleasure of hiking on the Lighthouse Country Regional Trail (LCRT) just outside of Bower on Vancouver Island. This simple trail showcases the beauty of a rare Coastal Douglas Fir Forest. It is also home to Sitka Spruce that commonly grow over 70 meters tall.

The path is level-grade, making it an easy hike. Its South Loop (2.5 km) has been upgraded to accommodate both wheelchair use and visual impairments. Eye-catching and informative signs along the way offer glimpses into the forest’s residents and unique history. These signs also display a sense of humour, nicely illustrated by the one stating, “The best way to identify a Sitka Spruce is to grab a bunch in your hand. The sharp pointed needles on all sides will surely give you something to remember it by.” Ouch!!

Every time that I am privileged to hike on such an amazing trail, whether here or much farther away, I am continually awed by the same thought. Countless men and women (many of them volunteers) turned vision, passion, and determination into something that we can all enjoy today…and would have otherwise lost. No words can express my gratitude.

Making this hike even more remarkable, I was able to share it today with Deb, The Widow Badass. Deb is on the Island visiting her daughter. I was delighted that we were able to meet. As soon as she opened the door, it was like I was being greeted by a long-time friend. Spending time with Deb quickly confirmed that she is all of the things that she appears to be on her blog, i.e., a highly engaging, curious, can-do, take-no-prisoners kind of gal.

When we began chatting, we both solemnly agreed that neither of us wished to write a book (although we both greatly admire those who do). By the end of our visit, I was completely convinced that Deb MUST write her memoir. I totally want to read more of her story. If you are currently unfamiliar with Deb’s blog, I highly encourage you to check it out here. Her words are both moving and inspirational!

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74 Replies to “The Lighthouse Country Regional Trail and The Widow Badass”

  1. Talk about a wonderful outing in good company. One of my favorite things to do as well is to walk/hike and talk with enjoyable and interesting company. Unless it is to spot wildlife. 🙂 It feels like “free and easy” exercise. You catch up with your friend and don’t realize you’ve all of a sudden walked for hours. 🙂 Lovely post, Donna!

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    1. Hi, Anne – We are extremely lucky indeed! I never want to take this area for granted. I haven’t actually counted, but I am sure that I could do a different VI hike every day for a year and not hit the exact same trail twice. Thanks so much for stopping by.

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  2. Thanks Donna, a good reminder of what came before – those who built the trails and preserved the natural area for all to appreciate and enjoy. How lovely to make this one wheelchair friendly! And how special to enjoy it with the badass gal – two badass women – what could be better!

    Great photos! Thank you!

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  3. Sounds like a nice trail and thanks for telling us about Deb. As for a book, I know we all can’t write one but I know we all have an interesting story inside of us!

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  4. What a wonderful meet up in a beautiful setting, Donna! Love the gorgeous photo of you and Deb. I, too, think of those who built the trails when I go on a hike. It is amazing that someone forged the way so countless could enjoy the beauty of the area and as time goes on there are those who keep it up (many times volunteers).

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    1. Hi, Molly – Bill Bryson’s “A Walk in the Woods” goes into great detail about the behind the scenes of bringing a trail like the Appalachian to life from conception to completion. Since then, I always wonder about a trail’s backstory whenever I am hiking.

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  5. So good to see this Donna! I met up with Sue from Sizzling towards 60 for the first time this week and it felt like meeting up with an old friend, it’s always a great moment meeting in person isn’t it?

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    1. Hi, Joanne – Meeting up with fellow bloggers has been such an incredible experience for me. Every single time it has felt like I was seeing a long-time friend….with zero awkwardness in the conversation. Deb is an incredible woman with an amazing story. I was honored to meet her.

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      1. When you think about it, it’s not really surprising that we connect with other bloggers like a longtime friend when we finally meet them. The truth is – we have been friends for a long time 🙂

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  6. Dear Donna,

    Meeting you and Richard has made my visit to the Island even more special! Your warmth and hospitality is so genuine and appreciated! Sorry it didn’t work to meet Jude as well, but I have no doubt I will meet her (and you again) in the future! 😉

    sending virtual love and hugs,

    Deb

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  7. Thanks for taking us on your recent hike, Donna. Gotta love that humourous sign that ended with the word ‘Ouch.’ And even better that you spent the day with another blogger, Deb. I always think that nature is at its best and most beautiful at this of the year when it is just waking up again.
    Glad you guys had a great day.

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  8. It’s amazing what beauty, significance, depth, and meaning can come out of a “simple walk”. And isn’t it wonderful when we can share the experience with others?

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    1. I love this too, Victoria. You never know who might be dropping by your area sometime soon. I initially would not have thought I’d have the chance to meet so many bloggers where I live. I have already met three bloggers who have traveled out this way. I have plans to meet with a fourth (Sue from ST60) this September. I’ve mentioned this before on a few of your posts –I would absolutely love to have coffee with you if we ever get the chance.

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  9. Years ago I used to like to take mini hikes of up to five miles or so, but for varying reasons I no longer do. Unless one defines beach strolls as a hike (I actually do, but I’m sure by definition and convention they’re not by most people). You do make it sound nice to try again, Donna. Oh, and I’ve been meaning to compliment you on the large relevant photo at the top of each post now — it’s cool looking. Thanks for the link to Deb’s blog too. – Marty

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  10. Yup, strolls along the beach definitely count as ‘hiking’ to me. Thank you for your compliment on my header photos. This was easily accomplished as soon as I switched to WP.com. I have no idea why it took me so long to make that change. Now, I’m avoiding the “new editor” like the plague! 🙂

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  11. I love how more and more paths are being made accessible. Sure there are some that can’t be, but nature is too beautiful not to be appreciated by everyone. Love a bloggy meet-up – I’m meeting up with some of my faves on Wednesday…

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  12. Hi Donna – isn’t it so fantastic when you meet another blogger and the connection is right there – old friends/kindred spirits – it’s just the BEST! I found it with Sue the moment we met up and I’m seeing a few of the other girls in a couple of days – can’t wait. And yes, it would have been great if you lived over here too – we’d have had a blast!

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  13. Good morning, Donna!
    I love this post for 2 reasons…the beautiful trail and hike AND the fact that you shared it with a blogging friend…I am on my way to visit her blog after I write this comment.
    I am so jealous of the blogger meet-ups I am reading about – you and Deb, Sue and Deb, etc.
    Someday!

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  14. Hi, Nancy – Thank you for your kind comments. The Blogger Meet-Ups that I have had have each been incredible. Janis (Retirementally Challenged), Kathy (Smart Living 365) and I are meeting up on Vancouver Island this July if you would like to join us! 🙂

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  15. What a lovely space to walk and escape the hurried and harried pace of life. I can almost smell the evergreens from here! And I am sure it was delightfully quiet – something this old librarian relishes.

    Glad you and Deb were able to meet. I have never met any of the gals I blog with and would be terribly shy doing so. But it is wonderful that the two of you got on so well. I am not familiar with The Widow Badass but love the name of the blog so heading there to check it/her out.

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    1. Hi, Leslie – If you have never done a Blogger’s Meet Up, I highly recommend it! For the bloggers whom you regularly follow, you would be surprised how comfortable and natural an IRL Meet Up can be.
      I’m glad that you are going to check out Deb’s blog. She has a fascinating story. I believe that you will enjoy her writing.

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  16. Hi Donna, I love the walk/hike/visit. Friends and I call it a “walky/talky”. It’s a privilege living on the Island with access to many beautiful hiking areas. I have not been on the LCRT. It is now on my list. I read some of the comments on this post and I noticed you mentioned Bill Bryson’s “A walk in the woods”. Coincidentally, I have this book on a hold list from the library. I now really look forward to reading it. I still have very infrequent and not very good wifi. I look forward to catching up on posts when accessible. I love the idea of a “walky/talky” with you in the near future!

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