Canada's pictorial stamps of 1938, covering the higher values, represented a very definite theme showing Canada's gateways to the north, south, east and west. The precedent established in 1928 of utilizing the higher denominations to illustrate scenes and subjects of Canadian geographical, industrial and historical interest, follows in this series. In an endeavour to maintain artistic balance of the designs, the Post Offices Department decided in the case of the pictorial stamps of this issue to eliminate subject descriptions from the designs. This information appears in English and French in the marginal paper along with the plate number.
This design shows the view from West Bay on the northern side of the entrance to Vancouver Harbour where the Lookout at the Narrows is situated. Prospect Point and part of the city appear in the background. This is Canada's western gateway to the Orient and the Pacific. In the distance looms Mount Baker in the State of Washington.