Backroads of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands


175 pages
Contains Photos, Maps, Bibliography, Index
ISBN 1-55105-099-4
DDC 917.11'2044




Reviewed by Patricia Morley

Patricia Morley is professor emerita of English and Canadian Studies at
Concordia University and an avid outdoor recreationist. She is also the
author of The Mountain Is Moving: Japanese Women’s Lives, Kurlek, and
Margaret Laurence: The Long Journey Hom


An initial map of the Vancouver Island shows the nine areas that are
covered in separate chapters. Joan Donaldson-Yarmey’s guide to the
most scenic parts of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands proposes
numerous day trips, and/or their combination into longer back-country
tours. The author has published two other guides to British Columbia:
Backroads of Southern Interior British Columbia (1996) and Backroads of
Southwestern British Columbia (1997).

Here, she covers campgrounds, hiking trails, waterfalls and beaches,
Native sites and totem poles, historic sites and museums, ancient
forests, and recreational activities such as beachcombing, fishing, and

The layout includes numerous small black-and-white photographs
(typically one to a page) and small maps. Frequent passages of lively
historical anecdotes are set off against shaded backgrounds. These
colorful passages complement the more formal directional texts.

The Backroads series would be helpful for families out for a day as
well as for more ambitious holiday planners. Backroads of Vancouver
Island and the Gulf Islands is an intelligent and useful addition to the
already crowded field of West Coast travel guides.


Donaldson-Yarmey, Joan., “Backroads of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 28, 2024,