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Horsetails
Some would say the first plant: ever! A gigantic earlier relative of the common horsetail thrived in the Carboniferous era and eventually became our present day coal deposits. Containing silica, horsetails make a natural "sandpaper." On the west coast horsetails and salmon slime were used to polish masks, canoes, bone tools and soapstone pipes. In spite of the rough texture of the stalk, the young plant heads can be eaten as asparagus.
Illustration by Manami Kimura
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09
Feb
2007
argaiv1747
Howe Sound Introduction E-mail
(4 - user rating)
Written by Brian Grover   
To keep building your skills locally try taking on the more open waters of Howe Sound. Though less protected than Indian Arm the numerous islands and islets of this nearby waterway offers a degree of shelter during all but the worst of conditions. One local anomaly, known as a squamish, is a high wind born in the mountains behind the community of Squamish that bears its name. The Coast Salish name means literally "mother of the wind." Though resulting in some of the best wind surfing conditions around, when a squamish hits the mouth of the sound it can churn up seas that the inexperienced may find threatening.

The many islands which comprise Howe Sound provide a labyrinth of channels and coves, beaches and banks to explore over many days. Two possible routes are outlined below but bear in mind that detours are possible depending on your schedule and time constraints.

Bowen Island Sea Kayaking has two locations to put in from. Rent your kayak at their main office on the dock at Snug Cove then, depending on your destination launch there or take advantage of their shuttle to Tunstall Bay to gain immediate access to Howe Sound.

Like Indian Arm, Howe Sound is not wilderness by any means. It is sparsely populated however and the further north you go the less signs of civilization you will encounter. One disappointment is a pulp mill at Port Mellon and another one at Woodfibre at the head of the sound. On windless days, when kayaking is at its best, the whole sound can fill with noxious haze that puts the lie to any notions of untamed wilderness. Yum!

bearpaw

 

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