The Wild Pacific Trail

How’s that for a name? The Wild Pacific Trail… it conjures up spectacular images, doesn’t it!? Well the real thing is even better than anything you can create in your imagination.

Since 1999, a volunteer organization, based out of the seaside town of Ucluelet, B.C. has been working on crafting… and I mean crafting… a spectacular trail along the rough, rugged and wild shores of the Pacific Coast of Vancouver Island, just outside that remote town. It has great flow through its twists & turns in & out of the coastal, temperate rainforest, with its trail climbing up and down, to and from cliff-tops, viewpoints and benches. It has crashing waves & rugged rock as its backdrop. And it even has thoughtfully placed, highly inspirational artist “nooks” (little balconies and platforms) and perches (like the crow’s nests on ships), scattered along the “Artist Loops” off-shoots on the trail, (for aspiring plein air artists). All that, and it’s now a decent distance to hike (compared to our previous visits) and such a wonderful place to explore.

In places it is a narrow track that leads up to terrific viewpoints.
Some places have stairs, carefully built to get you safely to the cliff tops.
The trail took us through some wonderful rainforest features Like this….
… and this!
And the views, well they were simply stunning.
At times you can get so close to those crashing waves… and their sound is deafening!
The pounding surf is thunderous.
And the beauty of the location, tremendous.
The winds that come off the Pacific Ocean create strange looking trees, where branches can only grow on their land-sides. Some are stunted by these conditions, like Bonsai trees.
The waves are mesmerizing. (Watch the video below for a time-lapse.)
The power of the wave action was heart-pounding. Thrilling. Incredible.
On the day we hiked there, we experienced rain, drizzle, cloudy skies and brilliant sunshine… all over the course of the 4 hours or so we were there, and loved when the sunlight filtered down through the rainforest trees.
The plant life in the rainforest sections was fascinating. These ferns grow perpendicular to their rock wall home, nestled in ta bed of the thickest mosses.
The light coming through Old Man’s Beard is soft and wondrous.
And in typical, rainforest fashion, there were often trees growing ON fallen trees.
Someone has a sense of humour!
And all the while, the views kept coming, carved out of the rainforest wall that formed the side of the trail. Here, the waves crash so hard they made great, billowing clouds of sea-foam (that slightly yellow stuff on the water in this photo).
Little clouds of sea-foam flew through the air, carried by those wave-pushing winds, and would land at our feet on the rainforest floor, filtering gently down through the trees. It was magical.
Logs, washed up on shore from the storm surges, were tossed about by the waves, and their roughness and piles caught  and trapped the sea-foam.
The trail comes close to the edge in places, especially in the sections called “Artist’s Loop,” but you are high enough to be safe from the surges.

And then there are places where you just have to go, explore (knowing that there’s lots of rock in front of you and the tide is going out… because doing this can be quite dangerous).

There were “civilized” places to stop, rest, and take it all in. Tame places to sit, I know…
…. but they had views like this!
Near the end of the trail, the ground was more freshly disturbed, and the trail more newly created.
And then were there, at the end of what they have currently completed. One day it will reach Pacific Rim National Park.
The views on the way back were equally as beautiful.


Never forget to look up for a terrifically dizzying perspective!
And the eagles came out to play. Can you spot one in this photo?
I love the way the mosses and lichens can pull water out of the air.
Some places lie deep in the darkness of the forest.
This droplet puts it all in perspective… water, the reason for this incredible landscape, and the droplet’s size…. what we are in this incredible place.

I am always amazed by the skill and the generosity of volunteers in this country. Those of you who have followed along for awhile have read me mention The High Rockies Trail… that and this Wild Pacific Trail are perfect examples of what someone with vision can accomplish, with the help, skill, generosity, time, labour, financial donations…. heck, the “gifts,” in whatever form they may come, of others. One last view of this incredible trail….

IMG_1106.jpgFor more info and a user guide about the trail system, go here.


For more experiences of our 2017 Trip to Tofino, go here….  And check out more hikes from Canada and our adventures around the world here.

10 Comments on “The Wild Pacific Trail

  1. Wow this does look stunning. I would really love to do this walk because as I have recently “discovered” mountains I do love the beach, so what a beautiful trail. More and more the Canadian posts I am reading make think i should move higher up on the visit list, it is so beautiful. Lovely post and I love your little time lapse videos. I have had a bit of break so planning to catching up with my blog world more now as the year settles in. Louise

    Liked by 1 person

    • I look forward to reading more of your posts, and your adventures, Louise. Where will you head to next? (And I agree, even though I’m from here, Canada is a spectacular place to visit, if you love outdoors and large, open places. It’s one of the last places on earth with huge swaths of protected wilderness… google the Nahanni National Park Reserve… that’s on my bucket list!). I promise to keep writing about our hikes here, and hopefully tempt you more!

      Liked by 1 person

    • And Louise, with the kind of adventures you do, you might really enjoy the West Coast Trail, once you finally get over here. It is spectacular, but you have to reserve your spot as they limit the number of people who can be on it at any given time. And you have to carry all your gear. And know how to read the tide tables… because some connecting parts of the trail require you to be on the beach at low tide (otherwise it’s under water… and that rainforest can be quite impenetrable where it meets the shore!).

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ok, you’ve convinced me – the Pacific Northwest is amazing. (It wasn’t a hard sell 😉 )

    You’re pretty prolific the last few days, you’re clearly a much faster writer than I am.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha ha… spoken like a Pacific Northwest guy, himself! I have about 3 more posts left in me for Tofino. When I really love a place I write… and write… and I was getting a bit of pressure from friends who wanted to see the pics (I used to put them up right away on FB, but it takes me longer now that I’ve switched to blogging). I’m back home now and life is getting in the way, so I won’t be quite as prolific now.


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