HOW DO I GET ON THE EMAIL LIST? You can either fill out the form on the 'Contact Us' page or call 604-883-2274 to have your email added to our email list. You will receive a weekly email describing the hikes for the upcoming week. Every 2 months a spreadsheet outlining all the upcoming hikes will also be emailed. There is no registration or membership. You can also just check the schedule on this website and, with proof of full immunization for COVID-19, join the hikes at your convenience, however you will not know if a hike gets cancelled or altered unless you are following us on Facebook or on the email list. WHAT SHOULD I BRING & WEAR? You should have good, comfortable hiking shoes and good, absorbent socks. Running shoes are not recommended. Wear layers of clothing as it may be cool at the beginning of the hike but you will get warm very quickly. Walking poles are used by some hikers, it is your choice. It is recommended that you use sunscreen and insect repellent as well as wear a hat. Ticks are a common nuisance from spring until early fall, protect yourself by covering exposed skin, tucking in socks, and using a good repellant. ticktalkcanada.com/
Bring water. Do not expect toilet facilities other than the great outdoors. You may wish to have a cellphone, bearing in mind that there are 'dead zones' in many areas. It is also recommended that you obtain the Leader's cell number prior to the start of the hike. CAN I BRING MY DOG? Well-behaved dogs are welcome but always bring a leash. When hiking in a Regional or Provincial Park, park rules state that all animals must be leashed. On other hikes dogs may be off-leash but occasionally parts of the hike are on pavement or are crossing a road and leashes should be used then. Recently there have been several encounters/sightings of wolves in the Pender Harbour area, mainly along the BCHydro powerlines. Wolves are attracted to unleashed dogs and we are strongly advising those who bring their dogs to keep them leashed. Dog owners are asked to either stay at the front of the group or at the rear to avoid having dogs run back & forth through hikers which increases risk of injury. For the safety of dogs and hikers, DOGS MUST REMAIN IN VEHICLES OR ON LEASH UNTIL A HIKE BEGINS. IS THIS GROUP SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN? Vaccinated children ages 12 and up are welcome as long as they are able to keep up the pace of the group and are able to hike for 2 hours. I HAVE VISITORS, CAN THEY COME TOO? In normal times we love having guest hikers, many of whom come from other parts of Canada, the United States, Europe and the South Pacific. During the pandemic, hikers are discouraged from bringing off-Coast hikers. Unvaccinated hikers are not permitted. HOW LONG DO THE HIKES LAST? It varies from hike to hike but the average is 2 hours. A few are 1.5 hours and a few are 2.5-3.0 hours. Check the schedule for details. YOU HIKE SO FAST, WHY IS THAT? There is a level of expectation that everyone will keep up. Experienced hikers within the group expect to hike at a quicker pace. If you are new to our group and find it difficult to keep up, someone will stay with you. However, the expectation is that you will adopt our pace within a few hikes. There is another option, the Pender Harbour Ramblers, who take things at an easier pace on shorter hikes. Contact Val at email@example.com or 604-883-1191 for more info. You can also check out their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/PenderHarbourRamblers/ YOU START SO EARLY, WHY IS THAT? Until March 2020, carpool departures were 8:15am SHARP. Hikes will now commence at 8:30a.m. SHARP from the trailhead from April through October and at 9:30a.m. SHARP from November through March. Again, the Pender Harbour Ramblers are another great option with a later start. Contact Val at firstname.lastname@example.org or 604-883-1191 for more info. HOW WILL I KNOW IF A HIKE GETS CANCELLED? If there are very high winds or extreme rain, snow or ice, a hike may be cancelled. The decision is made by the Hike Leader by 7:15am the morning of the hike so that an email can go out to all those on the list by 7:30am, as well as be posted on the Facebook page. It is very common in the winter for rain to fall heavily through the night but ease up considerably in time for the hike. SHOULD I BE CONCERNED ABOUT GETTING LOST? Each hike has a Leader who takes a head count at the start & finish. You can also ask the Leader for their cell phone number before the hike begins so that you can add it to your own phone, keeping in mind that there are often 'dead' zones for cellphones. However, the ultimate responsibility is yours for keeping with the group. Do not wander off into the bush for a bathroom break without telling someone you are doing this and/or asking someone to wait for you. Do not hike apart from the group. Do not turn back or take a shortcut alone. DO YOU ENCOUNTER WILD ANIMALS? The most frequent sighting is of elk who do not let anyone near them. There also may be coyotes. Wolves, cougars and bears are extremely rare but possible. Generally the group is making a lot of noisy conversation which is the best deterrent for wild animals. You may wish to attach a bear bell to your belt and/or bring an air horn or bear spray, and if you have a dog, keep the dog with you and on a leash as unleashed dogs are a high attractant to wolves. HOW DO I GET ONE OF YOUR HIKING CAPS? Contact us either through this website or by calling 604-883-2274. Each cap is $20 (cash only) and profits go into our trail signage maintenance fund.