Introducing our Instagrammer of the week, @maplemusketeer! Jordan explains, “My theme is something I’ve been living, considering, and calling home, for a number of years now and that is my concept of the ‘Rainforest Kingdom’. The rough boundaries of which are the coastal temperate rainforest and communities that exist by taking at least one boat from the Lower Mainland.
This region is called the coastal temperate rainforest for a reason. Once you leave the very humanized linear constructs of city you return to the transition zones where we blend again into the damp verdant forest along the Salish Sea. This is a place unique and wonderfilled. Taking a ferry any direction from the lower mainland I feel my homecoming: my return to the Rainforest Kingdom.”
A view familiar to any Sunshine Coast resident or frequent visitor. Bowen and Anvil Island seen through the windows of a BC Ferries passenger lounge about to cross Howe Sound from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale Ferry Terminal.
The Rainforest reclaims its own as generations pass like waves on the shore. Each new era removes some of the past as it builds what is to come. This old landing in Port Mellon is a fading legacy of a time before BC Ferries. Processes unfold here. We are merely one part of it. And it is fascinating.
Gibsons Landing, at the foot of Mt. Elphinstone, has been safe harbour for generations. What was, like much of the coast, a resource town, has transitioned into a place of tourism, artists, and retirees, winning awards for the beauty and artistry of its inhabitants. For many seasons my Grandpa’s fishboat wintered at the Government Wharf, and my brother and I grew-up hand jigging for shiners to sell to fishermen heading out for the day. Many things change and many stay the same. It is the nature of these places, the interplay between static and dynamic, forest and sea.
Communities originally developed with the ocean as their main source of transportation and it is reflected in the route of the Sunshine Coast Highway which rarely strays very far from the sea. Generations of children local, and those visiting for the summer, have honed their early construction skills amongst the driftwood washed up along these shores, as seen here in Davis Bay. It is a tradition that needs no instruction other than realizing the invited opportunity present.
The Sechelt Skate Park is in very close proximity to Chatelech Secondary School and was built through a partnership, and the dedication, of local high school skaters and local businesses. Though Skate Parks are now quite common features of most towns, this one was built over a decade ago when the general view of skaters was as punk delinquents set to vandalize and get up to no good. This summer one of those former ‘punk delinquents’ who helped get the park built as a student took time off work from his job at a local shipyard to participate in a community event and paint a new mural on one of the walls. Full disclosure: He’s my brother and I’m very proud of him.
At the top of the Sechelt Peninsula you can find one of the world’s largest tidal rapids. The huge standing waves of moving water draw experienced white water kayakers from around the world, and since the waves are only a few feet from shore they also draw many spectators from around the world.
This old boathouse is a remaining part of my family’s history near Egmont, BC. A number of my extended family’s fishboats were built here, on my great-aunt and great-uncle’s property, next door to the house where my Mom grew up, across the water from where my Grandpa was born. My Grandpa’s parent’s were one of the founding families at the start of the town’s establishment. British Columbia is a young Province, and the stories continue to fade and emerge as we go about our everdays. It is through the work of Storytellers, Archivists, Artists, and Heritage Centres, that the past will survive to inform not just the present, but the future as well.
This is a wonderfilled land of story and awe. This is a place of life, death, transitions, and deep goodness. This is the Rainforest Kingdom.
Jordan Oram (aka the Maplemusketeer) is a location independent writer, photographer, and encourager of awesomeness. Born and raised around the Sunshine Coast/Vancouver Island, his adult adventures have taken him to numerous BC towns, several continents, and 3 months of winter in Saskatchewan. When not working on inspiring social change through developing better perspectives he also drinks a lot of yerba mate, rambles around shorelines in proximity to campfires, hangs out on social media, savours craft beer, and grows out his ginger beard. You can follow him @maplemusketeer on Twitter and @maplemusketeer on Instagram,