Sunset Park Trail in the Village of Port Clements
Sunset Park Trail is a 'must' for your Haida Gwaii visit. This is an easy (flat), well maintained trail at the west end of Port Clements and is accessed via a parking lot 2 km east of the Sunset Park Campground of which it adjoins. It is somewhat secluded and located between a treed park-like setting and the Yakoun Estuary tidal flats.
The trail reveals an abundance of Salal, Salmon Berry and Huckle Berry bushes. The area is a deer browse as well as a nesting and feeding site for birds. It is also a year round home to a number of eagles. The forested area consists of Alder, Cedar, Spruce and Hemlock trees. Signs of earlier day logging are evident by the ‘spring board’ cuts in the huge stumps of cedar trees.
A ‘bore hole’ in a cedar tree alongside the trail indicates the site of a Culturally Modified Tree (CMT). The Haida will have bored such a hole to test the quality of the cedar.
The path joins with the Sunset Park Campground at a picnic shelter at the 2km point and continues on for appx 500 feet to a bird watching tower overlooking the Yakoun Estuary. The tower is accessed via a ramp to the first level platform and by stairs to the second level.
The estuary is a feeding ground to a number of birds including Dowitchers, Yellowlegs, Red Knots, Western Sandpipers and Least Sandpipers. Occasionally Black-bellied Plovers and Dunlin winter in the estuary. It's a wonderful place to explore – consider it for a springtime visit to Haida Gwaii!
Sandhill Cranes at the estuary