Fall is our favourite time to be on Vancouver Island. The waves pump, the crowds thin out and the weather isn’t totally unbearable. We all know the question; imagine you were deserted on a remote island, what items could you not live without? We have put together our top twelve items for fall on this Island.
- Aftanas Sled Round Tail Surfboard—This is my go to board for Vancouver Island; actually this is my go to board for everywhere now. The shaper is a Tofino local and knows the waves really well, and his boards are made for the conditions here.
- Filson Dry Bag—This bag has been a lifesaver for me. It keeps my camera dry, as well as anything else that is inside. It’s perfect for the rainy weather on the island.
- Billabong Towel Poncho—We do a lot of undressing and dressing in beach parking lots. With this poncho, changing in and out of your wetsuit is easy peasey. Last fall Jenn swore she wouldn’t spend another fall on the island without one.
- Arc’teryx Gortex Rain Shell—This jacket will keep you bone dry, which will keep you happy. It rains a lot on this part of the island (it’s a rainforest after all), and there is nothing worse than being soggy and cold.
- Hunter Rain Boots—Most rain boots are sloppy and hard to walk in. These ones are slim and comfortable for dog walking and surf checking. They also come in an array of super cute colors, which is also very important.
- Patagonia Fleece—The trick to staying dry and warm here is strategic layering. This fleece is the perfect under-the-raincoat layer or outer layer, if it isn’t raining. Patagonia gear is high on our list because they promote sustainability and also back up their products with a lifetime guarantee.
- Stanley Thermos—Yes, this thermos is growler size and can be filled with beer at the local Tofino Brewery, which is perfect for post surf beers on the beach. It keeps liquids cold for 24 hours and hot for 18 hours, so it can also be filled with tea or whatever other liquid your heart desires.
- Salvaje Bikini—Didn’t think you would need a bikini on this chilly island? Guess again. You’ll need one for the post surf hot tub. These bikinis are just our ultimate favourites. Use promo code OCEANANDOAKF&F online for a deal.
- Billabong 5/4 Synergy Wetsuit—The water starts to cool down in September and October, so a hooded suit is preferable for those who value coziness. We like Billabong because of the flexibility and comfort; some 5/4’s can be very restricting and hard to paddle in.
- Xcel Wetsuit Gloves—As the temperatures drop and the fall swell fills in, gloves become a necessity. We like these ones because they aren’t cumbersome as some others can be.
- Xcel Wetsuit Boots—These boots have fleece lining and are super cozy.
- Lightspeed Outdoors Waterproof Beach Blanket—This beach blanket is another key item to staying dry. Perfect to sit on for the post surf beer.
If you are coming to Vancouver Island during the fall, we hope this guide will help you out a bit. Stay warm, dry, and happy on the island!
We decided that it’s about time we share a few of our favourite potions! Living by the beach and constantly spending time in the sun can damage skin and make your hair a nightmare. Like when you forget a hair tie and come out of the water with one giant dreadlock (this is a weekly occurrence for me). Or your sunscreen washes off after 10 minutes and your face gets fried to lobster status. These products are our go-to and will hopefully help you stay fresh faced and bushy tailed!
- La Roche Posay Sunscreen (broad spectrum, water resistant 80 mins)—This is my absolute favourite sunscreen! I can walk the dog in the morning, reapply, surf in the afternoon and my face does not get burnt. I try to avoid getting a tanned face and seriously, this stuff does the trick! It stays on really well in the water and the best part is that it doesn’t make my face dry like some sunscreens do. It can also be used on your face and body so you don’t have to carry around two different sunscreen bottles.
- Colorescience Sunforgettable Loose Mineral Sunscreen Brush—Jenn introduced me to this mineral sunscreen brush and now I cannot live without it. It is perfect for running around town or sunset drinks on the beach when you still want to be wearing SPF but you also want to look natural and not shiny faced. You just brush it on your face, neck & chest and you are protected,bronzed & glowy!
- Kiehl’s Ultra Face Cleanser—In Costa Rica we wear a TON of sunscreen and sometimes reapply multiple times throughout the day. This cleanser is great for taking it all off. It is gentle but it works! I like that it is scentless and doesn’t irritate my skin at all.
- Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate—I recently started using this on my face at night and in my opinion, it beats every night cream I have tried. After a day in the sun, my face needs moisture and this concentrate works wonders. Even during the time of year when AC is necessary for a good night’s sleep, you will wake up with a dewy glow.
- Revlon ONE Coconut Conditioner—Now for the hair! My hair is hard to manage. It’s thick and dry and becomes even more so when I’m in the ocean and sun. This leave-in conditioner is a life saver. For those of you with long hair, you know how horrific it can be combing out your hair after a beach day or surf session. This product makes it easy. Plus it smells like a dream!
- Moroccan Oil—This is my other secret weapon. A few drops of this (combined with the coconut conditioner) and my hair stays smooth and shiny.
- NARS Laguna Bronzer—Since I try to keep my face white to avoid sun damage, I like using a little bronzer for a colour boost. Some bronzers are muddy or orange, not this one! You will look like a perfectly tanned goddess without the sun damage.
- NARS The Multiple Stick—I use this stick for blush & highlighting my cheeks but it can also be used for lips & eyes. Application using this stick is fool proof which is great for me since I have zero patience when it comes to makeup. The colour I use is Orgasm which is great for blush and just shiny enough to notice but not overly.
- Great Lash Waterproof Mascara by Maybelline—This mascara is so awesome that I have never even tried to use any other. It stays on in the water, comes off in the shower and isn’t clumpy.
- Kiehl’s Coconut Lip Balm—This stuff smells delicious and has a bit of SPF which is what I want. It also isn’t sticky and really keeps lips soft and moisturized.
Writing by Kaitlyn Shea