A week-long vacation with West Coast Offroaders to a place I’ve been wanting to explore for a long time – Vancouver Island. About an hour ferry ride west of mainland Vancouver, the island is a gem for adventurists.
Mission? Finding a secret 4WD beach and waterfall on Vancouver Island!
We got off the ferry from Nanaimo port and headed North. I’ve seen photos of a stunning beach camp and was dedicated to finding the spot. There’s no GPS coordinate shared publicly. But with a little research and map reference, I took an educated guess.
Usually, I share my GPS tracking for each trip. But due to the secrecy of these two locations and respect to locals, I am keeping it low. During the time on the island, there was a huge wave of “do not geotag” movement going on in the Lower Mainland. Mainly due to the overexposure of certain trails eventually led to “overuse” and being “trashed” by those newcomers. Some trails were closed due to the high volume of vehicle passing.
To this, I have mixed feelings. In Australia, 4WD culture is more developed, and sharing trail knowledge is a common thing. There are tons of guide books and map books telling you which trails are worth checking out. Some even go as detailed as providing turn by turn instructions. However, in Canada, good wheeling locations seem to be hush-hush. But that’s fine. If someone (like us, in this case) wants to find it, with some research and a map book, we’ll sure be able to find the secrets!
We found a little hidden ocean inlet along the way.
Secret 4WD Beach on Vancouver Island
And we found the beach! Spent a good few days beach camping. It made me miss the beach camp days in Australia so much. The weather was warmer, the sand was brighter and smoother. But as far as quarantine goes, this beach on Vancouver Island will do the trick for me.
As much as we’d like to stay longer, there are more places to explroe on the island and we packed up our gears rather excited.
Unnamed Waterfall on Vancouver Island
On our way to Tofino, we took another night camping just west of Sproat lake. Guess what, we found yet another hidden gem with guidance from locals. An unnamed waterfall!
Days in Tofino, we were settled in Surf Junction campground. Bringing 4WDs into an organized campground felt like wearing a cocktail dress at a casual gathering. A sedan and a tarp would suffice. But I loved the much needed hot shower!
Walked aroung Cox Bay Beach while the boys surfed. I know, i know. It’s Tofino, how could you not surf!
Julia and I originally decided to take a surfing lesson together. But when the date came, with clouds and light precipitation, we decided to go the safer route in case we get sick in cold weather – we chose hiking instead.
We checked out a bomber crash site in the woods and had the infamous Tacofino.
Our trip was ended with a detour to Virgin Falls. There are paid ATV tours going to this fall so we decided to take our 4WD. Turns out the forest road was rather well maintained and wide open.