Spring on the Island Highway

What price convenience?

The new highway allows for quicker travel but bypasses some unique Island scenery.

The freeway from Campbell River down island is, I’m sure we all agree, a much faster way to go than the original way; especially when you’re trying to catch a ferry. I do miss the old, scenic route with its many quaint, definitely “Vancouver Island-ish” views. Forced to give yourself some extra time to make the trip, one often turned it into a bit of an excursion with lunch stops, etc.

Thus the new highroad became somewhat of a paradox. The ride became faster and easier but the price we’ve paid, it seems, is that we’ve given up our “best in the world” Vancouver Island views along the famed eastern seashore. There is one spot on the new road, however, that turns my head for a second, third, and fourth glance, especially in springtime. Often I’m glad it’s a split, four-lane thoroughfare because I’m all over the road, captivated by the panorama before me. The view is at it’s best when traveling down-island and makes it debut very soon after leaving the Courtenay/Cumberland turnoff. At this time the road is indeed a “High” way and soon vistas of the distant shore below begin to emerge.

Every spring the flowers along our highways make me leap for my brighter colours as the Scottish Broom turns our landscape into a blaze of  gold and yellow. As if this isn’t enough, just so the yellows will really come alive, the purple/blue lupines gather around them. Mother Nature, using her complementary palette demands your attention, screaming out at you out at you from the roadside until she is satisfied that she has flooded your visual senses.

I’ve painted the Lupines/Broom arrangement before, usually between Port McNeill and Port Hardy, and probably will paint this dynamite combination again. The scene from the highway shown here has beckoned for me to paint it ever since the freeway’s introduction. The springtime flowers begged to be added!

 

Gordon Henschel owns an art gallery in Nimpkish Heights. www.henschel.ca

 

 

Just Posted

Vancouver measles outbreak prompts vaccine vigilance on Island

No cases here yet, but Island health authorities push measles vaccinations - and not just for kids

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

VIDEO: North Island Peewee Eagles unleash avalanche of goals against Peninsula in semi-final showdown

The two teams squared up on Sunday morning at the Chilton Regional Arena in Port McNeill.

North Island Seniors Housing Foundation takes the next step towards getting Trustee Road land

Seniors rejoice, Port Hardy council is very much in favour of helping… Continue reading

Port Hardy Volleyball club requests funding from Port Hardy council

The sport of Volleyball is alive and well in the North Island,… Continue reading

Students give two thumbs up to no more B.C. student loan interest

Eliminating the loan interest charges could save the average graduate $2,300 over 10 years

Ontario man accused of killing 11-year-old daughter dies in hospital, police say

Roopesh Rajkumar had been hospitalized with what police described as a self-inflicted gunshot wound

Manitoba ‘pauses’ link with ex-B.C. premier Gordon Campbell after allegations

Campbell had been hired to review two major hydro projects

City of Port Alberni cancels tourist train operations for 2019

Steam train to McLean Mill is out of commission for repairs; city wants to re-examine rail costs

Heritage minute features Japanese-Canadian baseball team, internment

The Vancouver Asahi baseball team won various championships across the Pacific Northwest

UPDATE: Woman, off-duty cop in critical condition after stabbing outside B.C. elementary school

The officer was interceding in an alleged assault when he and the woman were stabbed

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

B.C. business groups worry about looming economic decline in wake of NDP budget

The party’s second government budget focused on plenty of spending, business advocates say

Most Read