Spotting the orca rubbing behavior or seeing whales offshore is a memorable experience. You could see humpback whales swimming close to the shoreline and listen to breathing orcas enjoying the pebb
The Orcas usually approach the bay to rub against the pebbled beach in shallow water close to the shoreline, in as little as 1.8 m (6 feet) of water. It can be very close to the beach during high tide. The sea should be smooth and avoid windy days. The chance to spot them increases if you overnight at the campground at Bere Point Regional Park. Select an ocean view site at this fantastically located campground. It is serviced during summer only.
In the evening, we spotted Humpback Whales, and in the morning, we heard orcas rubbing on the pebbles. This rubbing ritual lasts from 15 minutes until 2 hours sometimes. Four different types of orcas occur here around Vancouver Island. The rubbing ones are the northern residents. It is still not known where the behaviour comes from. Is it a form of socializing or to get rid of parasites?
If you like to know more about the orcas and other occurring whales around Vancouver Island, check out our article Vancouver Island Whale Watching.
Weather and Season Details
The precipitation of Vancouver Island's east coast is just 700-800 mm per year. In contrast, the west coast of the island is exposed to moisture-packed winds blowing from the Pacific Ocean and receives plenty of precipitation from October to March. Summers are in general, relatively dry.
Spring is always a great time to visit Vancouver Island. Daily temperatures range from 11-15 ºC. It's a great time for wildlife viewing. The Pacify grey whales are on their route to Alaska, Grizzly and black bears finish their hibernation a looking for food along the shoreline.
From June through September, Vancouver Island is typically sunny and mild, although the temperature at Malcolm Island seldom goes beyond 15-17°C but can reach up to 25°C.
Autumn (late September-October)
In fall you may see a lot of fog, especially in the morning, which could last until mid-day or afternoon. The temperature is on average, around 12°C.
Vancouver Island enjoys a moderate and mild winter in most regions. Therefore outdoor activities such as fishing and hiking in the south-coastal areas are possible, even in January.
At least in the northern parts of Illinois, it can be challenging to find a spot to hike with rigor. Starved Rock offers visitors many ways to encounter the great outdoors.
It’s a magical year-round destination for hiking and sightseeing. In summer it’s very special to see the waterfalls after a hard rain, in winter when the falls are frozen. Spring offers the beauty of wildflowers. Fall shows its beauty with yellow, golden and red leaves that are present on the trails.
Avoiding Tourist Crowds
The park is a less busy in winter months (Dec, Jan, Feb). Otherwise it’s often heavily crowded in spring, summer and fall. Even more on weekends and national holidays. To beat the crowds: Avoid weekends and be there early. The visitor center opens at 9 AM but you can arrive and park earlier. Another way to avoid the crowds is to hit the trails that are not located in the main hub. The park is large and has many trails where you can ‘hike away’.
Bird Watching Months (Eagles)
Every year, thousands of eagles migrate to the area, they come for the fish found in the cold waters of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. The birds begin arriving in late December and stay until March. To spot the eagles and be on the safe side visit in January or February. Park administration says, that depending on the weather, most of the birds are gone in March already.