Claire Watson ArtClaire and her husband Adam reside in Tofino, British Columbia. You can find her Saturdays from late May to early October at the Tofino Market in the Village Green from 10-2pm.  Scroll down for her detailed bio!

Yes I know… the river otters again, but they’re so cute to watch until they start crapping all over the dock. I still love them. The last few days, as I have returned from the shower, they’ve just sat there… blocking my passage to the boat. They stare at me as if to say, “where do you think YOU’RE going?”  I don’t back down. I just snap back at them… “move over varmits, mind your manners!” There are 5-7 of them at a time… a pretty big wharf rat pack if you ask me. I think it’s time I give them names.

These characters HAVE had me thinking how cool dock life is down here at Fourth Street though, and it is about time I gave you all an introduction to the ‘otter’ side of Tofino (har har)… the side that isn’t often thought about when you think about this magical place. Tofino (according to Google images and most media articles) is a place of wilderness and mile long beaches, beautiful sunsets, clustered specks of surfers in the waves and world class food. It is a tourism destination for sure, and a perfect place to unplug and get out of one’s busy city life. Visitors to Tofino flock here from all over the world, saving their pennies for months for their annual (or singular) visit, and they need to book ahead (like MONTHS) or they will be out of luck for prime accommodation here. Annual rainfall aside, I never to take for granted my daily beach walks, or dockside sunrises and sunsets, as it fills my creative well on a daily basis.

Fourth Street Docks inhabit a micro-culture of its own here in Tofino. For wildlife, we have river otters (as you well know by now), raccoons, sea lions, eagles, ravens, crows, seagulls, kingfishers, swallows and a myriad of other birds (of which my daughter’s besties Cedar and Toby are the local birders and can tell you more than I can). We even have Orcas visit the harbour on occasion too which can be a treat in itself.

Read more on Claire Watson Art  The ‘Otter Side’ of Tofino.   To colour The ‘Otter Side’ of Tofino click here & print!

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Travelling to Tofino during COVID-19 – Please review this information before you plan

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Updated Highway 4 Road Closure Schedule at Kennedy Hill