Lovekin Rock at Long Beach

Early in the sunset the sky over Lovekin Rock is a mix of pale blues and salmon. It gets better! There’s something about a wet beach at sunset that I just can’t get enough of. Over the course of the summer I check the tide tables and try to find days when the sunset coincides with a low or dropping tide. …

Mole Crab Mania!

I’ve been spending summers out on the west coast since 2006 and I’ve never seen anything like it. Earlier this July, a large number of juvenile Pacific mole crabs made an appearance at Wickaninnish Beach. And they’re still here! A handful of Pacific Mole Crabs (Emerita analoga) found at Wickaninnish Beach in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Pacific mole crabs …

Union Bay Coal Hills

Large chunks of black rock on the beach at Union Bay are remnants of the area’s historic use as a coal shipping terminal between 1888 and the 1960s. Pilings are other evidence of historic industrial activity at Union Bay. I’ve lived in the Comox Valley for some time now but have never walked out into the coal waste hills at …

Radar Hill Beach

Remote Radar Hill Beach is a challenging destination in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s definitely off the beaten track in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and takes a little effort to get to but the Radar Hill Beaches are spectacular. The trail down to the beach is not maintained by Parks Canada and the going is fairly rough—there are …

Serene Schooner Cove Sunset

Looking west at the setting sun at Schooner Cove in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. Yellow Sand-verbena (Abronia latifolia) in the foreground amongst the drift logs. Schooner Cove in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is one of my favourite places on the west coast of Vancouver Island to visit. It takes a little longer to get to (about 30 to …

Signs of Spring … Gold

A constellation of Gold Star (Crocidium multicaule) in the dunes at Point Holmes, Comox, BC. One of the most beautiful early blooming spring flowers on the east coast of Vancouver Island is gold star or common spring-gold (Crocidium multicaule). In the Comox Valley the best show is along the narrow stretch of sandy “dunes” between the road and beach at …

South Beach Slow

I’m not sure why more people don’t visit South Beach in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve—it might be that I’m usually out there off peak hours, but this summer I’ve rarely seen more than a half-dozen people walking the curve of gravel beach each time. It is a relatively easy 800m (about 15-20 minute) walk from the parking area but …

Damon Point State Park

During spring break this year I did a week long road trip down Route 101 through Washington and Oregon so this post is a bit of a retrospective. One of the places that I visited was Damon Point State Park, a bit of a nature refuge in the tourist town of Ocean Shores. I stopped in at the tourist info …

Hello Hermit … Crab

On the beach with the kids this week and we found a beautiful hermit crab in its shell. All we could see was its blue claws. A shy hermit crab at Miracle Beach Provincial Park. Hello! I thought that with those blue claws this would be an easy crab to identify. I think that it might be a very worn …

How to Find a Glass Ball

Participate in the dune grass pull at Wickaninnish Beach on Sunday, August 22 and you have a chance to find and keep this glass ball. If you’re like me you’ve always kept an eye open for flotsam and jetsam while hiking the long sandy beaches of the West Coast. Occasionally a glass ball will turn up but today that has …