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 …

Spring Wildflowers at Schooner Cove

Spring is an ideal time of year to search for wildflowers in British Columbia. The relatively remote Schooner Cove is an interesting place to visit in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve and a good botanical destination. It’s not really a long walk, but it’s long enough that most people don’t make the effort to make their way around the point at the end of …

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 …

A Helleva lot of Velella

One of the early arriving Velella velella last week on Wickaninnish Beach in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. It’s like some ill-conceived, poorly planned invasion on the shores of the west coast of Vancouver Island. In the last week, small blue jellyfish-like creatures have been landing on the beaches of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve in the millions—large swaths of …

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 …

Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites

The massive gates, battery gun emplacements, underground magazine rooms, towers to climb, windows to peek in and out of, and  secret rooms to discover. All of these things and more make Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Sites of Canada very cool destinations for kids (and adults) of all ages. Last weekend I took Clara and Alden on a …

Rainforest Trail Ramble

I try to walk the Rainforest Trail in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve before 9:00 am. At that time of day I usually have the place to myself and can soak in the huge red cedars and western hemlocks, some of which are 1,000 years old. Last week I was trying some forest photography when I heard the sound of …

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 …

Wandering Tattler Tale

Halfmoon Bay is one of those spots in Pacific Rim National Park that is often overlooked by visitors with only a short amount of time. Access is via the 1.4 km long Willowbrae Trail—at the 1.3 point, just before it descends into Florencia Bay, the trail splits. The trail that leads off to the right runs through a stretch of …