After 11 years of bringing you local reporting, the team behind the Vancouver Observer has moved on to Canada's National Observer. You can follow Vancouver culture reporting over there from now on. Thank you for all your support over the years!

Surfing Long Beach

The author with surfer

My surfing adventure is the first of three stories filed from Black Rock Resort, in Ucluelet, a world class hotel in one of Canada's most beautiful locations.  Black Rock offers drop dead beautiful interiors, exceptional food, and a spa overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

View from Suite 315 at Black Rock Resort 

With its proximity to Pacific Rim Park's old growth forests and its miles of beaches made for surfing, beauty and adventure intersect.   

Today,  I took a surfing lesson with Inner Rhythm Surf Shop in Ucluelet.   A first time surfer, I mastered the art of having a blast in the ocean on a board, zipped snug into a wet suit, soaking up the negative ions and the views of the  rollers socking Long Beach.  

I admit that as my instructor, Simon, led me out into the ocean with my 13-year-old son, Eli, and I faced my first waves, I told Simon I felt hesitant.  Before we got near the water, Simon carefully explained how to manage in the rip tides he said poured out into the ocean around the rocky corners at the ends of the beach.  "Don't ever try to swim against a rip tide.  The ocean is always more powerful," he said. Now, standing in the churn between waves in the unruly ocean, I felt out of my element.  

He promised that my body would adjust to the environment and it would be okay.  As a wave approached, I climbed onto the board, activated my core strength, looked behind me, lifted up into a cobra like pose,  and paddled four strokes. I felt the wave catch the board and power me forward and on that ride in I understood the sheer ecstasy of surfing.

After a half an hour of surfing prone, Simon taught us how to pop up and we spent the next part of the lesson working on getting up on the board.  Eli made it, but not me.  I work out regularly and have the muscles to show for it, but an hour of jumping into and over incoming waves for the big high of riding them in, had the double effect of energizing and exhausting me.


More in Beautiful BC

Stanley Park named world's second most beautiful city park

According to Travel + Leisure magazine, Vancouver's own Stanley Park is also the world's second most beautiful city park, edging out many famous parks around the globe. Surrounded by water and...

The Peerless: the paddlewheeler that could

Not only did "The Peerless" make it down the Thompson River from Savona to Spences Bridge, but she also, eventually, made it back upriver again.

Kumsheen Celebrates 40 years of River Excellence

It all started with one little raft, a few paddles, eight miles of Thompson River whitewater, and a VW van loaded with enthusiasm. Four decades later, Kumsheen and I have both matured but I’m just as...
Speak up about this article on Facebook or Twitter. Do this by liking Vancouver Observer on Facebook or following us @Vanobserver on Twitter. We'd love to hear from you.