It is difficult to summarize Vancouver Island kiteboarding spots and conditions, with Nitinat probably as the most consistent and well known summer spot, and Tofino as your best winter and wave kitesurfing option. But there are many to choose from that it is a place where you can live in a city like Victoria or any number of small towns and find some of the best kiteboarding spots Canada and BC have to offer. For mainlanders, making the trip to the Island can be quite trying getting ferries during the summer holidays and will require some patience. For locals, the quality of life here is unsurpassed with so few people accessing the many year-round outdoor activities.
There are a number of Vancouver Island kiteboarding locations in or near Victoria and a bunch that are within a 2 hour drive of the city.
Kiteboarding Victoria In or near Victoria:
Cook St./Dallas Rd. - a popular spot fairly central in Victoria. Some people call this kite beach. This spot is the best in summer and for intermediate to advanced kiters only.
In a nearby town:
Gordon's Beach (Muir Creek) - this location is past Sooke (near Shirley) and works best in Westerly wind. Sooke is located a half hour drive west of Victoria and is another great summer spot. Check out this locals vid.
Jordan River -this infamously good surf spot is half way between Sooke and Port Refrew approximately 60 km from Victoria.
There are webcams for a number of these places to check out live conditions located online at bigwavedave.ca
Kiteboarding Tofino , the well known coastal surf town, is generally a fall and winter exercise as this is when the waves and cold front westerly winds come through. Cox bay in Tofino is the beach to hit to find hardcore riders chasing these winds and swells. Reading forcasts and local knowledge is the best way to get Tofino good but you can be lucky.
Nitinat kiteboarding is a great summer weekend trip - click here to scroll for more on Nitinat.
Goose Spit in Comox has its local riders but with its butter flat water as the wind blows over the spit from the ocean, its a great kiteboarding spot.
Kiteboarding Nimpkish is another option. Nimpkish lake is situated in the north of Vancouver Island, south of Port McNeill and has been a long time favourite for windsurfers. The rugged park here also offers great hiking and protected areas of old growth Hemlock forests. Nimpkish works on similar types of summer thermals winds to Nitinat. June, July and August being the best months to kite here.
Nitinat Lake (also spelled Nitinaht) is the jewel of Vancouver Island kiteboarding. Nitinat is 2.5 hours, with at least 1 hour of the journey taking place on a rough logging road, from Victoria. The journey is long and the camping is rustic but its a lot of fun.
The View down Nitinat lake out toward the Vancouver Island west coast and where a small inlet connects Nitinat to the Pacific ocean.
The beach setup
Windfest race day.
During the summer, Vancouver Island Kiteboarding is this campsite!
Check out the Big Wave Dave forum an active place for both Vancouver Island kiteboarding and windsurfing. At present time there aren't any comprehensive summaries of kiting in the area for newcomers. You will have to fish around a bit and ask a lot of questions. Or just show up on a windy day and chat with the locals. They are a friendly bunch!
Surfing is a growing sport in the cooler Pacific regions. There are many spots on Vancouver Island and the Victoria area. The competition can be pretty high for Victoria waves. The best place for newer surfers is Long Beach in Tofino.
Been there, done that, got a question? Tell other kiters about your experience at this kiting destination. You can also embed youtube video if you have something good to share.
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