Terrain: Flat

Traffic: None

Season: Year Round

Distance: 11 km o/w

Access: Take the Canada Line to Aberdeen Station in Richmond, exiting from the north end of the station. Follow Cambie Road westward for a single block to gain access to the dykes that encircle the city of Richmond. Though only a block away, the traffic is a horror show around here. Just stay on the sidewalk. If your group has children in it, play it safe and walk bikes to the trail atop the embankment.

Out in the Toolies: A patch of tule fringes the marshland along the West Dyke Trail. Tule [pronounced "tooly"], was harvested and woven into mats by Coast and Interior Salish. Tule mats had a wide variety of uses from roofing materials for seasonal camps to flooring and drying mats. The term "in the toolies", meaning far from civilization, is derived from this hardy sedge.

Garry Point Park: Situated where the Fraser meets the sea, a kite enthusiast prepares to launch on a blustry day.

Steveston Quay: Prawns offered for sale at dockside.

The End

Sea Asparagus

Sea Asparagus

This salty delicacy will be found wherever sea kayakers lurk. Carpeting the water’s edge on mud flats, sheltered coves and estuaries, sea asparagus prefers limited exposure to wave action. Sea asparagus has more aliases than its segmented stems have branches, being known variously as glasswort, pickleweed, samphire and pigeon foot. In the camp kitchen sea asparagus is versatile. Stems can be munched upon as is, used to perk up salads, presented like asparagus or even collected for pickling or freezing. A British Columbia company has developed a market for sea asparagus, shipping the frozen product to upscale restaurants worldwide. Soak sea asparagus in freshwater for several hours before preparing to reduce its salinity.

Illustration by Manami Kimura