Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tofino Waterscapes

My two favourite beaches are Chestermans Beach (particularly the southeastern beach, which is unspoiled by the present Wickaninnish Inn) and Long Beach.  The weather systems come and go off the Pacific Ocean, particularly in late October when we like to visit (right after Canadian Thanksgiving), and the amount and type of sunlight changes continually.  Both beaches are so gentle that one can walk great distances toward the receding Pacific Ocean during low tide.  However, this calm is beguiling, for storms arise which can be so strong that even the hardy local surfers leave their boards on top of their ancient vans.  During our four-day visit, we experienced beautiful calm during low tide, high winds during high tide (with logs washed up and blocking our entrance to Chestermans Beach), severe storm warnings to surfers, gentle west-coast rain, horizontal rain, thick fog, black bears on the golf course but well-fed on migrating salmon and fall berries, and a wonderful sense of isolation (tourists were gone).

Enlarge to see about 109 migrating Canadian geese heading to an inland bay at Ucluelet for the evening

A touch of light on the distant trees, wind-blown waves still safe for surfing.

Fog rolling in from the west (left), waves, high wind.  The spray reminds me of brother Mark's photos of blowing snow near the Atlantic Ocean.

Water churning from the storm, fog in distance, viewed from a high trail west of Ucluelet.

Idyllic calm, nobody in sight.

Looking southeast on Chestermans Beech during low tide.