The Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast TrailA week after the wreck of the Valencia, The Daily Colonist of Victoria ran a cover story about the aftermath of the disaster and the horrific scenes that continued to be found. Sydney Van Wyck of San Francisco, who arrived by the tug Wyadda to search for his sisters body was interviewed about the experience. He described bodies found washed ashore terribly mutilated and decomposed. “One body was found yesterday, not identified. This brings the total number recovered to 28. Ten had been previously brought here and eight arrived last night.”

The Valencia Disaster

 Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail1. The Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail2. The Voyage Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail3. The Boats Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail4. The McCarthy Boat Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail5. The Bunker Party Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail6. On the Valencia Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail7. The Rafts Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail8. The Turret Raft Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail9. The Rescue Ships Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail10. The Aftermath Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail11. The Survivors Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail12. The Lost 

The West Coast Trail

Shipwreck on the West Coast TrailPrologue Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail1: The West Coast Trail Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail2: When to Hike & Fees Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail3: Trailheads Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail4: Getting There Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail5: Considerations Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail6: Campsites Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail7: Shipwrecks Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail8: Routes Shipwreck on the West Coast Trail9: Sights & Highlights

Many bodies were taken to the beach at Darling River to be picked up by boat. “The majority were in badly decomposed condition, some with part of the head and skull missing.” Another search began near the Valencia and no bodies were found, however “following where the sea-gulls were thickest found five bodies floating over a mile from the wreck.”  Lineman Logan reported a woman’s body was spotted in the breakers about 100 feet off shore, but they were unable to get close. “Lieut. Stromberg said he would get it if he had to swim for it. He and four men clambered over the rocks, and after many trials secured the body, but the rising water cut them off and they had to spend the night on the rocks without provisions. They were taken off the next day.”   While the Wyadda continued searching for bodies it became possible to take a close look at the Valencia and the unbelievably difficult location she came to be in. Van Wyck recalled, “When the Wyadda was bound down with the five bodies recovered by the Perry this morning she stopped off the wreck and we sent in a dory with two Nome beachmen who got off three bodies which Capt. Smith had ready. Capt. Patterson and myself, with some seamen again visited the wreck, and went to the inside of it, within fifteen feet of the high cliff, which is 150 feet high and with about 30 feet of an overhang – making it impossible for anyone who reached shore from the wreck to climb it.”

Sydney Van Wyck’s continued the story of the search for his sister, “The boat again went over the wreck and I broke off a piece of the spar. The hull was seen plainly, and its plates were seen broken. No bodies were seen. I sure that all is being done this is practicable, though if it were a more settled community more men and steamers could be secured to more adequately search for victims. There were some theories that my sister’s body have been looted of rings, and clothing, but I do not think so. I will leave tomorrow for San Francisco with my sister’s body, which has been positively identified, a local dentist having carefully examined her dental work and compared it with descriptions, and expect to reach San Francisco on Wednesday.”  

The Valencia Disaster Continued: 11. The Survivors

Best West Coast Trail Sights & Highlights

Best West Coast Trail Sights

The Valencia Disaster

There were just 38 survivors of the Valencia shipwreck.  An estimated 140 people lost their lives on the ship over the course of 36 hours.  The 38 survivors escaped the ship at different times and ...
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The Valencia wrecked just before midnight on Monday, January 22nd, 1906.  Nearly 34 hours later, at 9am Wednesday morning the situation on the Valencia was horrific.  Battered by waves, the ship was ...
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The Valencia was a 252-foot-long passenger steamship built in 1882 in Philadelphia. She served as a passenger ship down the eastern coast of North America until 1898 when she was sold to the Pacific ...
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The Valencia departed from San Francisco at 11:20am on Saturday, January 20th 1906, bound for Victoria and Seattle. She cruised roughly parallel to the coast at a variable distance that ranged from about 8 ...
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West Coast Trail A to Z

The Cape Beale Lighthouse was built in 1873 and lit up the southern tip of the entrance to Barkley Sound. Barkley Sound is the huge gap in Vancouver Island filled with islands, with Ucluelet at the north end of the gap and Bamfield and Cape Beale at the south end. ...
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Cape Flattery Lighthouse is located on the United States side of the entrance to Juan de Fuca Strait. Began operation in 1857, the lighthouse tower is 20 metres tall and standing on a cliff the tower’s light stands 50 metres above the water. Cape Flattery ...
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The West Coast Trail by Day

Amazing Whistler Hiking Trails

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The West Coast Trail

The West Coast Trail was created after decades of brutal and costly shipwrecks occurred along the West Coast of Vancouver Island.  One shipwreck in particular was so horrific, tragic and unbelievable that it forced the creation of a trail along the coast, which ...
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Victoria Hiking Trails

Victoria has a seemingly endless number of amazing hiking trails.  Most take you to wild and beautiful Pacific Ocean views and others take you to tranquil lakes in beautiful BC Coastal Rainforest wilderness.  Regional Parks and Provincial Parks are everywhere you turn ...
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Whistler Hiking Trails

Whistler is an amazing place to hike. Looking at a map of Whistler you see an extraordinary spider web of hiking trails. Easy trails, moderate trails and challenging hiking trails are all available. Another marvellous thing about Whistler is that Garibaldi Provincial Park ...
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