I have just arrived at the historic fishing village of Steveston, well it's classified as a small town due to the noticeable expansion of new houses but thankfully the new developments have been built on the surrounding farmland and seem to be successfully tucked away out of mind, keeping the cosy feel of a village very much in tact.
|Picture looks more like a Western movie than quaint fishing village|
Steveston started growing in 1870s when a salmon cannery opened up and each season people would migrate down to work, naturally these workers would end up staying year-round adding to the population. 20 years later canning had boomed and around 20 canneries were operational within Steveston, giving it the nickname Salmonopolis.
Too much of a good thing, soon has to end, and canning of salmon is no different with fish stocks in decline, the industry finally ceased in the 1990s, Steveston turned its hand to shipbuilding for a while to ease the transition. It still remains an active fishing port but with an emphasis on it's history and developed waterfront, tourism is starting to creep in.
|Most boats than you can shake your mast at!|
Locals will tell you it's lost all its charm and has become an impersonal place but to me it seems walking around this central village nothing has changed since it was first established as a town in the late 1880s, with the old buildings lovingly looked after, everyone's friendly, everyone knows everyone else, adding to the surrealism is that it's like walking around a giant maritime museum, I hate maritime museums but this one is wonderful, just... a bit, weird.
I took a walk along the waterfront going to myself “Oh look, water, plant, boat, industry, houses” and when that stopped I went to the surprisingly impressive fountain of knowledge that is the Britannia Heritage Shipyard, a maritime museum – I didn't spend long there out of principle, but I wanted to, which I found... a bit, disturbing.
|Oh look, water, plant, boat, industry, houses|
I stopped off at the boardwalk on my way to Gary Point to sample some of the local delicacy, fish and chips – going for a salmon fish and chips, it was the freshest tastiest deep fried nuked fish I have ever tasted, was so good, I think I could easily become a fat greasy mess if I chose to stay any longer than I did and if the chips weren't so crap.
Gary Point is a small sand dune park with a few sculptures, beaches and wildlife not much going on to the untrained eye, but at sunset it felt very atmospheric and cold, which reminded me that I had a long journey home ahead of me.
|Some interesting debris|
I left Steveston thinking what a great and positive place it is, but with a feeling a big elephant was looming over me pointing its trunk to all these things I've missed out and all those historical hidden gems that are waiting to be found.