Completing Bowker Creek – The final stretches

Following my adventures in the Hall of Wonders and the Bowker Creek headwaters I was becoming fairly familiar with the underground portions our little urban stream, however, I was aware there were a couple more sections of the creek which flowed beneath the city’s streets that still needed to be explored! Finally, in the summer of 2021, a full two years after my first journey below the city’s streets, I would have the opportunity to finally complete this explore. It was a beautiful summer afternoon when my usual draining buddy popped by and we made our way to the creek. Continue Reading

Totally Not Getting my Friends Stuck in a Drain

Let me begin by stating that despite the title, I did not get any of my friends stuck in a storm drain, nor were we ever in any real danger. I did learn a valuable lesson about knowing the physical limits of your friends before encouraging them to do borderline insane things with you though! The streets beneath downtown Victoria are home to a number of interesting storm drains, many of them popular urban exploration spots for the local UE community. The drains of my hometown range from “easy to access” to “only attempt at stupid o’clock in the morning Continue Reading

Two Trestles, a Tunnel and a Waterfall

Just West of Victoria there is an extensive wilderness green spaced called Goldstream Provincial Park. It features hiking, camping and a nature house among other amenities. If you know where to look, it also serves as an access point to the disused E&N rail line and some pretty cool train trestles. The first trestle (known as the Goldstream trestle) is extremely well known about, and until recently, was a frequent destination for hikers. Sadly, within the last year a high-profile suicide at this very location, prompted calls to erect fencing around the bridge and within the last 6 months fencing Continue Reading

Discovering a New Drain

As we cautiously moved forward into the darkness I stopped my buddy and pointed ahead; a section where the weight of the buildings and earth above us had partially crushed the steel pipe in which we found ourselves. Not dissuaded, but much more cautious, we continued deeper into the Sandy Freeway. Since my last explore in April a lot has changed in the world. The spread of the COVID19 Carona virus, and the subsequent withdrawal of society, made going out on mundane excursions feel like an urban explore – deserted streets, abandoned shops and an overwhelming feeling of stillness gave Continue Reading

A return to Bowker Creek

After my successful exploration of the Douglas Darkie in October, the infamous Victoria rains arrived; rendering additional underground adventuring unsafe. I was forced to content myself with with reviewing archival images, online anecdotes and GIS mapping services for some time while awaiting better weather. The hiatus allowed me to conduct research and and formulate a list of new sites to explore, and first on the list was a return to familiar ground. Bowker Creek and it’s many tributaries As discussed in my original Bowker post; the creek is an urban stream that spends most of it’s life underground, flowing through Continue Reading

Exploring the Bowker Creek Storm Tunnels

As you proceed through the near complete darkness, boots slish-sloshing through ankle deep water, your feeble light catches a familiar, yet unexpected object. You turn your head and squint at the yellow figure and as you approach you find your self muttering in surprise: “is that… Pikachu?” Welcome to the Bowker Creek Tunnels. What are the Bowker Creek Tunnels? Bower Creek is an urban stream in the Victoria-BC area which originates in the wetlands near the University of Victoria and snakes it’s way through several municipalities before eventually outflowing to the ocean. While the creek was once a vibrant aquatic Continue Reading