Vancouver Island offers exceptional views for outdoors enthusiasts, especially those looking for an off-road adventure. Winding through North Vancouver Island’s highway you’ll find yourself immersed in a dense evergreen forest towering overhead. Two hours southwest of the quaint Village of Port Alice, BC you’ll find yourself at one of the best-kept secrets – Side Bay.
Described by some as an extraordinary oasis, or Canada’s very own Hawaii, you’ll find remarkable views for miles! Side Bay offers black lava rock protrusions and sandy beach’s which are able to be driven on with a properly equipped four-wheel drive vehicle. On a clear day, you’ll find views of Brooks Bay Peninsula which is the only part of Vancouver Island that escaped glaciation and offers plant species found nowhere else on this planet.
November is the official start of storm watching season on Vancouver Island, where people make their way in droves to Tofino and Ucluelet. Side Bay offers unobstructed views of the Pacific Ocean and the solidarity to storm watch, thus creating the perfect November escape.
Combining the off-road capability of Wheel Fun Adventures Jeep Wrangler and Treeline Outdoors Ponderosa rooftop tent created an unmatched set-up for this adventure. The first night spent at Side Bay there was a 4.9 magnitude earthquake off the coast of Tofino, creating massive swells and intense winds. The following day at Side Bay was spent inside of the tent as the winds and rain levels were intense, stepping outside of the tent for a brief washroom break resulted in being soaked head to toe.
Thankfully, we had the protection of the Annex which created the perfect shelter for cooking and protection to the vital diesel heater as well as offered panoramic views for the ocean. That night we were greeted with wind gusts reaching up to 90km/hr accompanied by torrential rains. Our Treeline tent keeping up exceptionally warm and dry. Sunday morning, we woke up to a beautifully calm ocean and we’re astonished that not a single tear had occurred to the tent.
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