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Storm Watching in BC


For those who live on the pacific side of British Columbia, you know what storm watching is, or have at least heard of it. Extremely popular, storm watching is an outdoor activity (although some places are built for indoor viewing) with wonderful visual rewards. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and experience.

I’d say it’s an add for the bucket list. In BC, storm watching takes you head to head with nature, and you’re front and centre for the whole event. Some seasoned storm watchers will sit back, relax and observe the magnificent waves from a resort, while others will opt to participate outdoors, disappearing into sheets of ocean spray.

The pacific side of British Columbia is home to over 6000 islands and during the winter and early spring months the shores on the west coast erupt with waves and winds firing on all cylinders pounding the coastline.

There are waterfront resorts that allow you to enjoy the sounds and sights of a pacific storm while staying safe and dry inside behind large protective windows. You can spend hours watching the waves toss beach logs about, it’s mesmerizing.

If adventure travel is more your cup of tea, you can suit up in head-to-toe rain gear and rubber boots, waterproof the camera and prepare to walk the beachings alongside the thundering waves and ocean sprays. Some resorts will supply guests with this kind of gear – you can always ask ahead for what’s included before planning your trip!

While this is a fun experience, any one who ventures outside during a storm of this magnitude should be smart – there’s strong, unpredictable winds, rogue waves that have the capacity to knock you down, and occasionally flying logs. While being outside is exciting, try to stay a minimum of 50 feet away from the tide line during these storms.

The most recognized locations for storm watching is in the Pacific Rim area on Vancouver Island – Tofino and Ucluelet – and also, off the northern tip of the Queen Charlotte Islands. The unprotected coastline fronts the open ocean and receives the strongest of the incoming storms. Many accommodations in the communities of Tofino and Ucluelet offer storm watching packages.

Exciting and a way to do it for those who play it safe, and those who are more adventurous! Start planning your trip today.