cold weather surfing at Sombrio Beach on Vancouver Island

That rain I said we weren’t afraid of – well, this is my blog post about it.

In Australia, surf seems to come in all sorts of flavours and weather, often accompanied by sunshine and beach tanning. In Canada, that is not the case.

The best surf forecasts seem to come when there’s rain storms of epic proportions along the coast, leaving the surfers who choose to battle the cold and wet, left conquering the elements in whatever mode of transportation took them to the remote beaches that see less population during said epic surf forecast.

So, Thanksgiving weekend, all looked right for a Canadian surf and we prepared as best we could for a rainy Island escape.


Of course our sleeping arrangements were in the Pathfinder, so we carefully planned out each item we brought, knowing the rain would play a huge factor in how we experienced the weekend.


We arrived at Sombrio beach and Rob popped out in his Quiksilver Wetsuit for the first surf of the trip. I have a wetsuit, but no board, and definitely was not feeling brave enough to approach the cold waters, so I was the trip chef, and capitalized on relaxing while he was out playing in the waves.


Let’s return to the conversation about the rain. It was heavy.

We had tarps, and a fire, and a hammock… and blankets. And it was still so very cold and wet.


So much of this type of adventure is attitude dependent – how you go into it, and how committed you are to making it awesome. We fully knew what we were getting into, and so we made it our mission to have an awesome weekend, no matter what. When the rain stopped for a few moments, we took advantage and explored waterfall caves along sombrio, laughing and shivering.


It’s truly a spectacular place, untouched it seems in some parts, and in others where groups set up – it’s as if it’s one of those hidden secrets that only people willing to make the journey know about.


Cold and wet, we knew this was exactly what we had wanted for our Thanksgiving weekend.


And in one beautiful, final moment at Sombrio on that Thanksgiving weekend, the sun poked through the clouds, as if to just let us know that it was still there.

Sometimes, the storms are what need, particularly if our sport is Canadian surfing. And maybe as an observer, the sun popping through gives me yet another appreciation for it’s greatness. Thankful for the heat it brings to light me up just when I need it.



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