Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

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Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
IUCN category II (national park)
Map showing the location of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
Map showing the location of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
Location of Pacific Rim National Park in British Columbia
Location British Columbia, Canada
Nearest city Victoria
Coordinates 48°38′10″N 124°46′09″W / 48.63611°N 124.76917°W / 48.63611; -124.76917Coordinates: 48°38′10″N 124°46′09″W / 48.63611°N 124.76917°W / 48.63611; -124.76917
Area 511 km2 (197 sq mi)
marine: 221 km2 (85 sq mi)
terrestrial: 290 km2 (110 sq mi)
Established 1970
Governing body Parks Canada

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is a Canadian national park reserve in British Columbia comprising three separate regions: Long Beach, the Broken Group Islands, and the West Coast Trail. The entire reserve encompasses 511 km2 (197 sq mi) of land and ocean. It is characterized by rugged coasts and lush temperate rainforests. The reserve is open from mid-March until mid-October. It was created in 1970 as the first national park reserve, and remains the oldest, having yet to fulfill its promise of becoming a national park after more than 45 years. The reserve was opened in 1971 in a ceremony attended by Princess Anne of England, who was presented with a driftwood abstract sculpture by Jean Chretien, the minister responsible for Parks Canada. The sculpture was the work of local artist Godfrey Stephens.[1]


This park reserve is home to mammalian species of raccoon, black-tailed deer, cougar, wolf, black bear, marten, and mink.

Visitors are often thrilled by views of various marine animals such as seals, porpoises, sea lions, and many species of whales that are frequent at this shoreline.


The park encompasses a thin strip of land located on the south-west coast Irel Island. To the east of the park lies the Vancouver Island Ranges of the Insular Mountains and to the west is the Pacific Ocean.

During fall and winter, the area is continually subjected to moist air masses from the Pacific Ocean. The presence of the mountain ranges causes the air masses to rise and deposit large quantities of precipitation, a phenomenon known as orographic precipitation. The area averages over 3,000 mm (118 in) of precipitation per year, a key factor in producing temperate rainforests. During the drier summer months the area is sometimes covered in fog.

Long Beach[edit]

Satellite picture of Long Beach.

Long Beach is the most visited and most accessible of the three regions. It is made up of the coastal region from Tofino to Ucluelet.

The primary feature in this area is Long Beach itself. The area also contains the Green Point campground, which has 94 campsites for both tents and small trailers. There are also numerous trails in this region, running through bogs and temperate rainforest areas.

Other structures in the area include a ranger station, British Columbia Highway 4, and Wickaninnish Interpretive Centre. This centre is the main educational centre in the area and contains exhibits about local wildlife, plants, native culture, and history. The centre also includes a theatre, restaurant, gift shop, and information desk.

Long Beach, 2004

Broken Group Islands[edit]

The Broken Group Islands region is made up of over one hundred small islands and islets in Barkley Sound. The largest forested islands are Effingham, Turret, Turtle, Dodd, Jacques, Nettle and Gibraltar Island. The area is accessible only by boat, and is popular with kayakers. There are seven camping areas scattered on the islands. Campers should be aware that there is no fresh water available in the Broken Group Islands, so any water needed will have to be brought in.

West Coast Trail[edit]

The West Coast Trail is a 75 km (47 mi) trail along the west-coast of Vancouver Island from Port Renfrew to Bamfield. The trail was built to aid in the rescue of shipwrecked sailors. Construction on the trail started in 1907 and by 1910 the "Lifesaving Trail" was complete. The trail was abandoned in the 1950s. By 1970, the trail was transformed into The West Coast Trail, a challenging trail that takes visitors along rocky beaches, through rainforest, and across sometimes rough and muddy terrain. The trail has been improved greatly over the years and can be traversed in 5–7 days.

Tsusiat Falls, a campground on the West Coast Trail.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Trebett, Margaret (February 1971). "Teepee Workshop Produces a Gift for Royalty". Times Colonist. 

External links[edit]