Our collaborator, Charlotte Lau took a girls surfing trip to the coast of British Colombia, where she describes what they discovered on their exploration around Tofino and the waves that they were able to catch on this trip.
After a 30 min ferry from Salt Spring Island, I finally made it to Crofton, BC. I’m not sure how, but I manage to squeeze my 6’4 fish snug in the passenger seat. From there, I drove my little red bug to Nanaimo to meet my friends, who were coming from Vancouver and Kelowna.
There’s not many spots you can surf in Canada, but lucky me, I’m only 5 hours away from the Surf Capital. In the summer time, you can stay out in the water as late as 10 pm and surf, as the sky is light by the multi-hued sunset. The winters are harsh, but it results in epic swells and the best and largest waves of the year.
Car’s packed, surfboards on the roof, music playing and we are on route to Tofino.
We rented this beautiful house in Ucluelet also know as Ukee to the locals. We settled in, got the fireplace going and all you can hear was laughter and tunes as we explored our new home for the next few days.
I love how we didn’t have an agenda. Instead of trying to jam everything in, we just did as we pleased. The only priority was surf, adventure, food and good company.
We spend as much time as we could outside. Beach time was key! We went from beach to beach searching for waves. First, we checked out Mackenzie beach. It was a little crowed and the waves weren’t crashing right. Next we drove by Long beach, and although it looked pretty good, I was pushing Cox Bay. It’s one of my favourite beaches because of its consistent beach breaks. We check the surf report and it was estimating four to seven feet with little wind. Our group had a mixture of surf experience, so while some stayed on the beach, others played in the white wash with their nine feet foam boards, and the rest paddle to the break to catch some bigger waves.
With no booties on, I remember running toward the ocean as my feet hit the cold liquid blue. As I embraced the elements I fought with the current to get out of the impact zone. I paddled and paddled and it seemed like I was going nowhere. And as the waves came down on me, I remembered how good it feel to be in nature and how it is all on me when I’m out there. My lips tasted salty, my toes chilled while my hair can’t seem to stay out of my face but onward I went.
It’s funny how that one perfect wave makes it all better. The condition out by the break was a little rough to get to, but once I did, that first wave made it all worth wild. As I paddled my heart out to catch it, the moment I got up, it was pure bliss.
As much as I love warm surf, something about [Canadian] surfing keeps me smiling all day long. Maybe because I like the extra padding of the wetsuit to shield me from the cold water, but There’s something magically about Tofino, it’s one of my favourite places in the world. You know what they say; you always remember your first time! And my first time surfing was in this magical place twelve years ago.
The combination of west coast trees, salty breeze, surfers, storm watchers and the easy vibes is the perfect equation for a west coast adventure.
Follow all of Charlotte's adventures on instagram (@lau.char)