The lake lies, glacier-scraped, in a deep valley, fed by the constant trickles of water from the peaks above. 30 kilometres long, 1.5 wide at its widest point, it's more of a slow river than a lake, a drainage canal at the foot of the mountains.
|I couldn't get back far enough to take in the full height of the cliff. Not without a boat to take me out into the lake.|
|Google map. The white areas are mountain peaks.Golden Hinde is the highest mountain on Vancouver Island, at 2197 metres.|
|Terrain view. From the lake surface, at 211 m above sea level, within 5 kilometres, the land has risen to 2000 metres, on both sides of the lake.|
The road winds along the cliff face. When it comes out from behind trees, there's a view over the water. But parking along the roadside is not permitted, probably because of the danger from falling rocks, and the instability (or lack) of the lake-side shoulder, so at these viewpoints, there will be a sign: PULLOUT 500 M. Half a kilometre along, there's the pullout; a safe parking spot where the shoulder widens and looks firm. Usually, it's surrounded by bush; to see that viewpoint, you have to walk back those 500 metres, a kilometre round trip for a photo or two. I did this three times.
At a couple of pullouts, though, there were gaps in the trees. One gave me a view of Mount McBride, 5 km away down the Wolf River valley.
|Mount McBride, 2081 m. high.The little yellow trees are cottonwoods on the east shore of the lake.|
|These signs were helpful. I wish there were more like them.|
|Looking along another helpful sign, to Marblerock Canyon.|