Tow Hill Road and Hl'yaalan Waagusd North Beach

SGaanuwee Supernatural Beings inhabit all corners of Haida Gwaii. You can find many of them very easily. Just a half-hour drive east from Masset you will find Taaw Tldáaw Tow Hill. You can drive a well-maintained gravel road through old-growth forests, then follow a boardwalk to Taaw’s foot. With a flooding tide and strong swell, you will see Kwahtsiisda the Blow Hole throwing sea spray high into the air.You will find Hl’yaalan ‘Llnagee Hiellen village on the eastern bank of Hl’yaalan Gandlee Hiellen river. K’iygang the Haida canon of oral histories confirm, this village is one of the many villages existing below and above it, where SGaanuwee live. Sprawling sandy and stony beaches, old-growth forests and diverse bog ecosystems characterize the surrounding area. In our physical realm, many neighbouring villages concentrated along this coastline. The concentration of Haida households here may have supplied the area with its name: Naay Kun House Point.You will find numerous cabins and campsites in the area, plus gift shops and a coffee bus. Every year a few visitors lose their vehicles during a drive on the beach, to the annoyance and at times amusement of Islands residents. Don’t risk being “that guy”. Do not take rental vehicles out on the beach, and do not drive above the high tide mark or on sensitive razor clams beds. In fact, a better plan is to ditch the idea of beach driving entirely and rent a bike to enjoy the area. Be respectful of the environment you are in.

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From Hl’yaalan, hikers can access the Cape Fife Trail. If the 12-hour walk (return) won’t suffice, then the three-day East Beach Trail stretches south to Tll.aal. Along the way, you will pass through domains of numerous SGaanuwee, among whom live Gaahllnaas – Utláaman, Gadaa K’aw, Gaaw XanhlGa Sk’aajawaay, Xaasa, Kiid Gaataalaa, SGuuhlGuu Kuuna, Nang Na Sandlanee ‘Giidangwaas, Tl’aajaang Kuuna and NáaGa Saandllnaa Gaydangwas. 

Less ambitious hikers may settle for SGidlii Gandlee K’yuuwee White Creek Trail, an easy two to three-hour-long walk through beautiful bog ecosystems. 

As well, there is a well-maintained boardwalk at Taaw Tldáaw, a portion of which is also wheelchair accessible out to Kwahtsiisda. 

Check out the beautiful offerings at Chown River Gallery

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