From November 6th to the 8th, 8 Ecological Restoration Graduate students went on a volunteer trip to Galiano to assist the Galiano Conservation Association with some planting in their recently restored areas.
We had a wild time getting to Galiano the first night and just barely made it onto the last ferry that night. When we arrived at the Conservancy, we were met with a beautiful night sky full of stars and a toasty warm cabin classroom where we all had a chance to hangout and chat until we decided to go to sleep that night.
The next morning, we woke up to a grey, windy day but we got our many layers on and headed out to the North East part of the Conservancy’s property to start planting. As like with many of the gulf islands, Galiano has a high population of deer so we needed to construct deer-proof cages to surround the newly planted plants so they wouldn’t disappear overnight by hungry deer.
On the last day, Adam Huggins, the Restoration Coordinator for the Galiano Conservancy Association, showed us around the property and the many places they have restored and plan to restore. One such part is the Nuts’a’maat’ Forage Forest in which they are attempting to cultivate traditional food and medicinal plants in a restored and regenerating ecosystem.
We planted about 300 pants over two days we had to plant while also having some time to hangout and explore the property. Saturday night we managed to get a fire going despite some gusty wind, and on Sunday we watched the sun set at Chrystal Cove on the property. Just before we left for the ferry terminal, we checked out Montague Bay to watch the last of the light fade behind the Vancouver Island mountain ranges. We finished off the weekend by getting pizza at a restaurant in town called Babes in the Woods. We highly recommend their BBQ Chicken and Galiano Sweetheart pizza.
While this was a one-time volunteer opportunity with the Galiano Conservancy Association, we hope to continue this relationship and visit with them year after year to help them with their grand plans to restore the land that they promise to protect.