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Labrador Tea
Forgot the tea bags and dying for a cuppa? Look around the camp. Chances are your drippy socks are draped over a Labrador tea bush. Steep the leaves, but not the socks, in boiled water for a tea that was enjoyed by more North American Indians than any other kind. Don't actually boil the leaves however as boiling releases a chemical called ledol which has a number of unpleasant side effects. Pregnant women should avoid Labrador tea altogether. As a mild narcotic, Labrador tea was also an essential ingredient in kinnikinnik, a tobacco-less smoking mixture used by native groups throughout much of North America.
Illustration by Manami Kimura
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07
Feb
2007
argaiv1188
Deeks Bluffs Trail E-mail
(7 - user rating)
Written by Brian Grover   

Level: Easy
Distance: 7 km o/w
Time: 4 h o/w
Elevation Change: 385 m
Map: Squamish 92G/11
Season: Year Round
Access: See Getting to Whistler

The bus driver should have no trouble stopping on the wide shoulder in front of the trailhead to Deeks Lake. Knowing in advance that the stop is immediately past a small sign for Bosco Creek, on the long straightaway leading up to the hill above Porteau Cove Provincial Park should be helpful however.

From the road the trail shoots straight up the shoulder of the mountain over a short section of creekside switchbacks. Once you reach the top of the bluffs however the main trail turns right onto an abandoned logging road and continues gaining altitude at a more modest pace. Turn left instead to explore the nearby quarry, now abandoned, that once belonged to the Deeks Sand and Gravel Company.

Back on the main trail, begin looking for a branch to the right after 45 minutes or so. Having located the Bluffs Trail, leave behind the trail to Deeks Lake and head down towards the highway for a few minutes. Another right hand branch leads up to a viewpoint overlooking the islands of Howe Sound, an ideal spot for lunch.

Descend to the Bluffs Trail and continue first west then south. The whole area is a nest of disused logging roads but the main route should be obvious. Expect to encounter numerous viewpoints as you make your way along the bluffs high above Highway 99. Eventually the trail begins to descend again, gradually at first then just before the end of the trail, very steeply. Back at the busy Sea to Sky Highway cross the road and look for a pull-out from which to flag down the next Vancouver-bound bus.

bearpaw

 

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