At 5:30 pm, we arrived in Gold River. What a beautiful winding road it is to get here! You pass through Strathcona Provincial Park and the landscape is amazing! Mountains, rivers,creeks and streams, huge cedar trees, mini waterfalls…..so so breathtaking. There are many trails to hike, and if we go back this fall, they will definitely be on my to do list.
My little back seat photographers didn’t get any shots of the wondrous view 😦 I did get some shots with my film camera on a trip to Campbell River, so we shall have to wait for film developing – oh how I am used to the split-second results of digital.
Looking through my photos, I see that I was seriously tardy on taking pictures of this little town in the mountains, so in lieu of photographs, we shall have to use words. Nestled in a picturesque setting , Gold River is a town with an interesting history, it was once a flourishing place, having a pulp mill and logging to sustain its residents. When the pulp mill closed in 1998, people were forced to relocate. In 2001, the wood mill in Tahsis (another small town an hour away) closed as well. The town is off the beaten path, so there aren’t a lot of people traveling through to help keep shops open. What a pity, as it would have been a lovely town in its heyday, all the wiring is underground so there is no overhead wires and electricity poles; nothing gets in the way of the breathtaking view of the surrounding mountains. They have a very nice swimming pool and an arena, there are rivers and the ocean is a short drive away. Most of the buildings that used to house shops are now empty, but when they were full, I bet the town core was bustling. It was named Gold River in the hopes that there would be gold there, but it flopped and there wasn’t.
The apartments we stayed in were at least 30 years old, they would have been a prime place to live back then. Lack of upkeep has caused them to deteriorate, leaving only 2 buildings rent-able. There are 8 building in total, each having 12 or so apartments. The grounds would have been lovely with bamboo growing all around, concrete walkways and a common ground area in the center with a park, gazebo and even a swimming pool!
We stayed in an apartment on the third floor, it was in decent shape. Paul informed me that it was the nicest one he had seen there. The first apartment he stayed in smelled of cat urine……gross. This was our home for 5 days. I enjoyed the simple living of having very little stuff, there was so little to keep clean!
The man that ran the apartments did not like to throw anything away, so the apartment came furnished and the park was stocked with old toys and slides….. we could see it from our windows, so Mama could peek at the kids while they were down there playing.
There was moss growing everywhere. The concrete stairs and walkways as well as old parking spots, were slowly returning to the Earth.
One of the buildings was completely overtaken by vines.
Our apartment was up top in the middle.
We visited Gold River for 5 days while Papa finished up work. We amused ourselves by checking out the pool, the local library and the thrift store. We visited the river, popped in at a delightful cafe and pottery gallery, and made a trip to Campbell River for more food because Mama didn’t buy enough groceries…ooops. We made good use of our time, while still getting in naps, home-cooked meals and decent bedtimes.
It was nice to be somewhere that was in bloom, the cherry trees were showing their beautiful pink flowers, lining the streets with their blossoms. Back in our hometown there was still snow on the ground and everything was still dormant, when we return we are hoping the snow is gone…… but for now where we are, it is spring.