This is a beautiful hike through old forests with HUGE big-leaf maple trees, leading to a sandstone shoreline across from Gabriola Island and Mudge Island. When you get to the water you can turn right and walk along the shoreline path to Joan Point Park at Dodd Narrows, where a dramatic tidal current puts on a big show at the right tides.
This is a great place to see marine mammals, including orcas if you're extremely lucky. The current at Dodd Narrows creates a unique fishing experience for whales and other mammals. The sea lions pass by on their migrations; they love to lie on the log booms parked around the nearby Harmac pulp mill, and you can hear them clearly from the Cable Bay trail!
It's good to see Mudge Island so close, across the narrows from this beach. And then there is Gabriola Island to the left, then Protection Island, then Duke Point and the Harmac pulp mill (in its massive closeness).
A well-established trail starts at the parking area and descends gently for a little less than 2km. Then it crosses a pedestrian bridge and emerges above a beach of stone. You can continue to the right, following the shoreline as close to the water as possible, according to the tideline.
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