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Virgin Falls Tofino BC
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Virgin Falls Tofino Hunting Waterfalls on the Pacific Coast

Looking for an awe-inspiring hike? Why not visit Virgin Falls, Tofino? A wonderful short hike on the Pacific Coast of Canada. In this post, I’ll share some tips and techniques for photographing Virgin Falls, and some of my favourite photos from this breathtaking destination.

Table of Contents

Where is Virgin Falls in Tofino?

Virgin Falls is about an hour and a half drive from Tofino, British Columbia. Most of the trip will be on logging roads. The drive is a 110-kilometer round trip and I highly suggest a four-wheel drive, especially for the last 30 kilometres.

Virgin Falls Location

Where is this wonderful location? It’s just past Clayoquot Arm Provincial Park and Clayoquot Plateau Provincial Park, along the Tofino Creek. The landscape around Virgin Falls comprises mainly of old-growth forests and rugged roads.

Map of Virgin Falls Tofino

Virgin Falls Hike

The hike to the Falls from the parking area is approximately 200 m and takes about 2 minutes to walk. If you cannot find the trailhead, don’t worry. Listen for the sounds of the falls. Or walk towards the red bridge at the washout. Follow the washout till you see the trail.

Attractions at Virgin Falls trail

The Virgin Falls is surrounded by trees and wildlife and offers scenic views of the surrounding area.

You can hike, swim and explore the mysterious nature of the area. There is also a campground with a view of Virgin Falls where you can enjoy camping with an exceptional view. Bears and eagles are prevalent in the area, so be careful when hiking or swimming in wild areas.

Driving to Virgin Falls Tofino on Vancouver Island

From Tofino Or Ucluelet

  • From the T-junction where you either go to Tofino or Ucluelet, you want to head back to Port Alberni
  • Turn left onto Pacific Rim Highway
  • Drive to Deer Bay Rd
  • Cut back onto West Rd
  • Follow West Rd past Kennedy Lake Provincial Park
  • Cross over the Staghorn Creek Bridge
  • Ver-left back onto Deer Bay Rd
  • Stay on Deer Bay Rd along Auseth islet Approximately 24 Klm

FYI – this route is where most of the back county surfers live. The First Nation has place road block to try and keep them out.

FYI #2 – The latest reports ( Aug 2022) the logging road to the falls has been washed out. The logging roads are impassable by vehicle. 

FYI – Feb/23 The debris has been cleared and the road is passable, however there is a washout still hindering non-4×4.

Be prepared for back-country driving

Driving conditions to Virgin Falls are pretty bad. Most of the roads are a narrow logging route with large potholes and uneven gravel. My advice would be use of a 4×4. Portions of the road are just wide enough for a single vehicle. It’s important to keep an eye out for places where you can pull over. Be aware logging trucks use the roads, so it is important to keep your distance from them and remain alert for any changes in road conditions.

Planning for the Virgin Falls Tofino a back-country drive

It’s important to pack the right items for your safety and comfort. Here is an expanded list of items you should bring with you:

Back Road map: Yes, they’re old-fashioned, but many GPS and SatNavs lose signal in this area, so it’s safer to have a backup.

Cell phone: may not have cell service, but the GPS still might work.

Blankets: If you get stranded while waiting for help, blankets can keep you warm until help arrives.

Spare tire: Did I mention its rugged terrain? It’s very easy to get a flat tire; make sure you have a good spare.

General car toolkit: Tire jacks, jumper cables, tow-rope. Items to get you out of a tight spot if something happens on these bad roads.

Virgin Falls Tofino Vancouver Island BC

Tips and tricks for capturing amazing photos of the waterfall!

1. Take Multiple Shots – This will allow you to find the perfect angle and lighting for your photo.

Experiment with different angles: Taking photos from low and high angles, from the side or directly in front of the waterfall. Move closer or farther away. How does it affect the composition?

Vary your distance: Adjust your distance from the waterfall to capture a close-up shot or wide shot that highlights its overall size and beauty.

Watch the light: Snap photos at different times of the day, see how it affects the mood and tone of each photo.

Compare shots: Compare your photos against one another until you find one that best captures your story.

2. Use a Tripod – A tripod will ensure that your photo is crisp and clear.

You will want to use a tripod; it ensures that the photo is tack-sharp. A tripod provides stability, allowing you to take longer exposures without camera shake. Using the tripod will help you take better pictures of waterfalls with minimal effort while ensuring they are crisp and clear.

3. Use a Wide Angle Lens – This will help capture more of the scene in your photo.

Use a wide-angle lens to photograph more of the scene. It’s shorter focal length allows you to photograph a wider field of view. They are especially useful for waterfall photography, where you want to capture a large area or show the vast area in which the subject is located.

By using a wide-angle lens, you can capture more of the scene and create a sense of scale. It allows us to exaggerate the scale of the waterfall.

4. Take Time to Experiment – Try different angles, focal lengths, and framing to find the perfect photo.

Vary your angles: Taking photos from high and low angles, try using a drone.

Use different focal lengths: Experiment with using wide angle, normal, and telephoto lenses to see how they affect the composition of the photo.

Experiment with framing: Fill the frame with the subject or leave space around it to create a sense of balance or tension in your photo.

Experiment with different techniques until you find one that works best for your subject and mood you’re trying to convey!

6. Be Aware of Your Surroundings – This will help you to avoid getting distracted or running into anything while you’re taking photos.

It is important to pay attention to what’s happening around you, especially if you’re in a busy or unfamiliar place. Keep your equipment safe and avoiding tripping over it; keep it covered while taking photos. It is important to respect the privacy of others by not taking photos of them without their permission. (an ongoing joke within my group.) Being mindful of your surroundings means you can take better photos without disruptions.

7. Practice Makes Perfect – Practice taking photos before you arrive at the waterfall, so you’ll be ready when the perfect shot appears.

Practice taking photos before you go to Virgin Falls. Get familiar with your camera and be better prepared for the perfect shot of the waterfall. By practising different angles, focal lengths, and compositions, you become more confident in your skills. By practising taking photos in different lighting conditions such as low light or golden hour, you will light affect the look of the photo. Therefore, practising beforehand can help you capture the perfect shot!

Virgin Falls Tofino BC

Final Thoughts on Photographing Virgin Falls Tofino

With these tips in mind, you’re ready to take some amazing photos of Virgin Falls. Remember to take your time, be aware of your surroundings, and have fun! And don’t forget to check out other great photo locations in the area.

Photographing Virgin Falls Tofino was an enjoyable experience, and if you go, it will leave a lasting impression. The natural surroundings provide endless opportunities for exploration and creativity. I would call this a must-visit destination. Whether you are looking for a place to hike or spend a day photographing, you will come away with unforgettable memories. So, if you are a nature lover and love to capture the natural beauty through your lens, then Virgin Falls Tofino should be on your bucket list.
While visiting this are be sure to stop by Long Beach in Tofino

Frequently Asked Questions

Virgin Falls is located in Alberni-Clayoquot, on Vancouver Island, Canada. It is between Tranquil Creek Provincial Park and Clayoquot Plateau Provincial Park, and can be accessed via Highway 4. The landscape around Virgin Falls is covered with forests and is next to the Tofino Creek.

The hike to Virgin Falls is approximately 200 m (656.1 miles) long. It starts in a parking space and is through a beautiful forest, so it is not hard to walk.

Virgin falls is approximately 53 m (173.8 ft) tall and is surrounded by a fascinating forest that may seem like a fortress. Under the waterfall lies a pool with crystal clear water, perfect for swimming.

Yes, there is wildlife in the area. Bears and eagles are both prevalent and easy to spot.
Bears: These large mammals can be dangerous if encountered in the wild. It is important to keep your distance and not approach them, as they may become aggressive.
Eagles: Eagles are large birds of prey that can be dangerous if they feel threatened by your presence or if they have young nearby

Yes, there is no dedicated campsite near Virgin Falls, but you can camp at the parking lot.

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