HOW to survive the West Coast Trail

BestHike editor Rick McCharles

After hiking the West Coast Trail twice in 2021, I put together a video playlist with two goals:

1. WHY the West Coast Trail is our #1 hike in the world.

2. HOW to survive. It’s dangerous and challenging.

Below are all 7 videos. If they help, bookmark them and/or subscribe on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch the Introduction on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Bamfield to Michigan Creek on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Michigan Creek to Tsusiat Falls on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Tsusiat Fall to Cribs Creek on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Cribs Creek to Cullite Creek on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Cullite to Port Renfrew on YouTube.

Click PLAY or watch Nitinat Option on YouTube.

Giant BANANA SLUG in my Tent

On finishing my first West Coast Trail hike 1999 I threw my backpack into the trunk. Drove directly to my parents home hours away.

Two days later I unpacked. Found 2 banana slugs inside.

I’m more careful now to keep pot, mug and cutlery clean and packed away at night.

My tent zipped.

Yet I still had a banana slug in my tent this year. 😐

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Arctic Circle Trail, Greenland

… At just over 100 miles long, and taking 7 to 10 days to complete, the Arctic Circle Trail crosses the largest ice-free patch of West Greenland.

This splendid backpacking route, lying 25-30 miles north of the Arctic Circle runs from Kangerlussuaq to Sisimiut – both with airport access.

a summer walk, ideally from mid-June to mid-September, when the tundra is bursting with life; during the long winter, snow and ice, short days and bitter cold are the norm …

Cicerone

Bo Normander posted an excellent trip report from 2017:

GUIDE TO THE ARCTIC CIRCLE TRAIL IN GREENLAND

Lisa Germany (from Australia) posted her trip report.

Or you can listen to an interview where she describes Greenland and the ACT in detail.

The Best Treks in Northern Peru: Cordillera Huayhuash and Cordillera Blanca The 10Adventures Podcast

On this episode we dive head first into the incredible trekking regions known as the Cordillera Blanca and the Cordillera Huayhuash in Northern Peru. Our guest Christian Alvarado, owner of Huaraz-based adventure tour operator Go2Andes shares his expertise on these 2 incredible mountain ranges and the 3 main treks offered here.  If you’re a lover of high altitude trekking, you don't want to miss this in depth look at the 3 most popular treks here, the Alpamayo Trek, the Santa Cruz Trek and Huayhuash Treks. Find out what goes into preparing for these types of high adrenaline adventures as Christian shares everything from acclimatization plans, transporting gear, and best times to travel.    Check out a full list of Go2Andes incredible trekking tours on 10Adventures or going to https://www.10adventures.com/tour-operator/go-2-andes/
  1. The Best Treks in Northern Peru: Cordillera Huayhuash and Cordillera Blanca
  2. Adventuring in Europe Now: What‘s it like to travel right now
  3. The GR5: Trekking from the Alps to the Mediterranean with 10Adventures founder Richard
  4. Cycling from Brighton to Budapest with Ryan
  5. Cycling and wild camping 5,000 km around Europe with Jens

Banff’s Marsh Loop Trail in Winter

Trip report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles.

A very popular short walk out of Banff townsite in the Canadian Rockies, the highlight is seeing song birds, waterfowl and amphibians.

Not so much in winter. 😀

Yet I’d argue it’s even more beautiful with snow and ice.

Click PLAY or get a glimpse on YouTube.

10 Adventures has a great write-up calling it the Marsh Loop Hike. (3.4km)

Dale Hodges Park, Calgary

by BestHike editor Rick McCharles

I was born and raised in Calgary, Alberta in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky mountains.

BEST urban hiking — in my opinion — is along the north bank of the Bow River in the NW of the city of nearly 1.3 million.

A new attraction has been added. Dale Hodges Park – stormwater wetlands, wildlife habitat, trails for cycling and walking, and lookout points across the scenic river valley.

Formerly a gravel pit, it won the highest award of honour from the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects for its use of environmental landscape design.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I’d never seen a muskrat (photos) in my home town. Until I visited Dale Hodges Park.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Hiking Tunnel Mountain Banff in Winter

Tunnel Mountain 1,692 m (5,551 ft) is located in the Bow River Valley of Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

The mountain is nearly completely encircled by the town of Banff and the Banff Springs Hotel grounds

Climbing Tunnel is super popular year round as the trail is well graded. In winter many folks bring hiking poles and ice cleats as there are slippery and icy sections.

4.3 km (3 mi) round-trip.

You’ll often see Elk on the way up as I did.

Banff Township seen from Tunnel Mountain

related – Banff’s Tunnel Mountain Hike is Wonderful in Winter

Bobcats in Calgary

In my travels around the world I’ve seen much elusive wildlife including snow leopards.

BUT I’d never seen more than bobcat paw-prints.

In recent years, bobcats have been moving into big city Calgary, population 1.2 million plus.

MyCalgary.com

The city offers plenty of squirrels and jackrabbits.

One took a nap in a city yard a couple of weeks ago.

I saw this one just after dawn in the neighbourhood where I grew up. It seemed totally unworried about me standing only about 2m distant.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

BestHike #10 – Overland Track, Australia

The Overland Track in Tasmania is one of our top 10 hikes in the world.

Click PLAY or watch a 1 minute introduction on YouTube.

Overland Track

The best & most famous walk in Australia.

Overland

AT A GLANCE

  • surreal, unique Tasmanian vistas
  • pretty lakes, tarns and waterfalls
  • exiting by ferry it’s minimum 62km (38.5mi) carrying a pack plus many possible sidetrips without a pack.
    • Elevation Gain: +4,793 ft / 1,461 m
      Elevation Loss: -5,160 ft / 1,573 m
  • 8000-9000 walkers / year in the past
    • 60 walkers start / day 2018 in high season
    • Oct 1 – May 31 Overland Track Pass reservations online
  • access by public transportation
  • easy-moderate hiking IF the weather cooperates
  • add challenging sidetrip peak scrambles if the weather is good
  • Nov – early May best months
  • possible to hike year round (snow travel during the winter)
  • 7-nights recommended. Start Ronny Creek. Finish Cynthia Bay.

Read more on our Overland Information page.