Saturday, August 16, 2014

Pacific Playgrounds 2014

We've just returned from our main vacation for the summer, and our sixth consecutive year staying up-island at Pacific Playgrounds. Each year, I mean to take the camera and post a mini photo-tour of the campground, and each year we return home with no (or very few) photos.

This time it's different. I took advantage of a dull morning, with everyone else off shopping for fishing tackle, to take a stroll with dog and camera in tow.

So, visitors are greeted by the welcome sign alongside the office and store. Straight ahead is a marina and boat launch.

The campground itself is pretty typical. Six roads with generous pitches and dotted with trees that provide welcome shade.

This is our pitch, complete with the clutter of two weeks' outdoor living. And, yes, those are animal cages in front of the picnic shelter. Our rabbit and hedgehog come camping with us, as well as the more traditional dog!

At the back of the campground is a large playing field. There is a swimming pool and playground behind the building just left of center.

A track leads into the woods behind the campground. This lamppost always makes me think of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

This track makes a good shortcut up to the public road, and this gorgeous old bridge. The grocery store is just a few minutes walk away. Very handy.

The bridge crosses the beautiful Oyster River, seen here meandering off towards the sea. The river runs right alongside the campground, hidden behind the trees on the right. The river was lower this year than we've ever seen it. Too low for tubing, but nice and warm for swimming in the deeper sections.

Follow the river downstream and we arrive back at the marina...

...And then the wide expanse of Saratoga beach.
That's a tidal lagoon in the foreground, with a sandy beach stretching out beyond the shingle bank.

That trip for fishing tackle paid off, with some salmon brought back from Campbell River.
And tubing may have been off the list of activities, but we got good at catching freshwater crayfish instead.


  1. Hi Ian - vaguely know where that is .. I've been on the ferry over to Nanaimo to see my mother's cousin and her family outside Duncan.

    How amazing - such delicious looking salmon and then the freshwater crayfish .. wonderful seafood.

    Lovely looking camp site - good such a variety of activities ... fun - thanks for the views .. cheers Hilary

  2. Lovely place for a camping holiday.
    Looks like a whole lot of fun for the family

  3. Hilary, you are in the right area. The campground is just over an hour's drive north of Nanaimo. The crayfish were delicious!

    Mynx, lots of fun. We're trying to persuade the kids to tour somewhere different next year but they keep wanting to go back here.

  4. That's wild to think you could just float all the way to the ocean.
    Would be cool to see that lamp post in winter if the place isn't too close to the ocean to get snow.
    And you have a hedgehog? Need to post some pictures of him.

  5. Alex, I'm sure they get snow there in winter, and that would indeed be cool to see.

  6. I love that your pets get to go camping with you! :)

  7. What a beautiful beach, and it looks like you ate well with all the salmon and crayfish.

  8. Carrie, the kids even take the rabbit for walks :)

    Jean, we did indeed. Of course, a few trips to the grocery store helped too :)


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