Map Atlas - Pacheedaht Region
Database - West Coast


Pacheedaht aquatic region
(click to enlarge)
Pacheedaht OVERVIEW

The Pacheedaht First Nation have 4 reserves on 174 hectares, approximately 80 km from Victoria. Facilities on reserve include a Band Office, longhouse and campground. Pacheedaht First Nation is led by Chief Arthur Jeffrey Jones.

The region is also home to the village of Port Renfrew, population 400, which lies at the mouth of the San Juan River, 107 km northwest of Victoria. Port Renfrew is the jumping-off point for the West Coast Trail heading north. The popular 77 km trail stretches between Port Renfrew and Bamfield.

In the mid-1930's, the San Juan Valley attracted large scale logging operations. The Malahat Logging Company built a railway line from their beach camp, extending 22 km to beyond the Bear Creek Valley. Beach Camp was located where the present Port Renfrew townsite is today. Bear Creek Trestle, built in 1939, stands 242 feet high and spans 517 feet across. The bridge was, in those days, the highest wooden trestle in the world.

Forestry has been the long-standing economic force in this region, but extensive harvesting and a downturn in the forest industry has led residents to seek additional economic activities in the region. The tourism sector is being promoted to help address this need, with infrastructure improvements planned to serve recreational interests. A majority of current business activities are small in scale or home based and will continue to be so until the tourist potential of the area is developed.

Many beaches grace the shoreline of this region. Sombrio beach, southeast of Port Renfrew, is a popular destination for surfers. One of the reasons for Sombrio's popularity is it's location within 100km from Victoria.

Visitors to this region come to experience the beauty of the coastal environment, the vibrant cultural history and the challenge of hiking one of the most arduous hiking trails in North America. Tourism activities have flourished in this region due to the popularity of the Trail.

Common terns

Common terns migrate along the coast in spring and fall, pausing to rest on floating logs and kelp beds. In fall, they can be spotted in the thousands, diving for small fish or feeding on flying insects.