River Bend Guest Suites
We are located in the beautiful Sayward Valley on north-central Vancouver Island. We are only a leisurely and scenic 40-minute drive north of Campbell River. Just two kilometers down a paved country road from Highway 19, our estate is quiet, serene and relaxing.
A Man Named Smit
We purchased what was once the Smit homestead. Frank ‘Flannel Foot’ Smit was one of the original settlers in the Sayward Valley, nearly 100 years ago. Frank walked with a shuffling gait and got the nick name ‘Flannel Foot’. Frank was an accomplished fiddle player and often played at the local dances and gatherings.
Our suites are in a big, rambling home situated on a 62 acre parcel of forested land bordering the Salmon River. This magnificent property and house have been undergoing renovations and recovery for the past several years. While there is much to be done to bring the property back to its former glory, we are proud to share with our guests the results so far.
The yard site, bordered on three sides by huge mature evergreen and maple trees, has about an acre of lawn, a grape arbour, several gardens and an orchard with a dozen mature fruit trees. From the yard there are spectacular views in all directions – including a view of Mount H’Kusam, the highest peak in the area.
An easy five-minute stroll takes one from the yard down a trail to a wonderful sandy beach on the Salmon River – perfect for swimming, sunbathing, fishing or building sandcastles. The beach is also ideal as a put-in or take-out point for kayaking, canoeing or rafting along the Salmon River. As well, the property has several other picturesque trails to explore which meander alongside the river or lead deep into the forest.
The meadow and surrounding forests are often visited by black-tailed deer, Roosevelt elk, eagles, hawks, and many other birds. In early June the hummingbirds arrive and are mesmerizing to watch as they flit around the grape arbour.