Comox Sunrise at Goose Spit, Photo Destination BC Boomer Jerritt
The community of Comox, together with the City of Courtenay and the Village of Cumberland, form the Comox Valley and are located on the eastern shore of North Central Vancouver Island. The valley celebrates the sea, the surrounding farms and a backdrop of majestic mountains. The region is home to several busy marinas which are protected by a rock breakwater which is in turn protected by the Goose Spit. Goose Spit Park is a unique landform, which together with Gartley Point creates the region’s Harbour. It is a flexible sand spit with a beautiful recreational beach and a sheltered lagoon. There are unique and rare plants and excellent views.
Just a short distance north is Black Creek with its many farms. Also Miracle Beach Provincial Park which offers lush forest trails and at nearby Saratoga Beach is a warm, shallow and safe swimming beach, great for beach-combing for sand dollars, crabs and seashells.
Some of the best saltwater fishing on the island, particularly for salmon, can be found in the waters between Courtenay and Comox. Because of its sheltered location the shoreline around Comox is well suited for rod fishing in a small boat. You can also buy seafood directly from the fishermen at the Comox Harbour Marina. The valley is surrounded by wilderness and there are great trails, awe-inspiring scenery and plenty of wildlife. Take the chairlift to the top of Mount Washington for a magnificent view of the entire Comox Valley. With many local parks, and countless kilometres of hiking trails the Valley beckons to be explored on foot. Golfing, bird watching and skiing at Mt. Washington in winter are all right on the region’s doorstep.
The Comox Valley has had human inhabitants for over 4,000 years due to its gentle climate, abundant seafood resources, and ease of movement along important waterway trade routes. This waterway trade included a variety of materials and foodstuffs. Eulachon oils, shells, cedar products, and fish were commonly exchanged with other coastal peoples. The Salish word “Koumuckthay” means “plenty” resulting in the Valley being known as the “Land of Plenty”.
The Port of Comox was founded in the mid 1800s on the slopes of the Comox Peninsula. Overlooking the protected waters of Comox Harbour (once known as port Augusta), it was an important port for the ships of the Royal Navy and transport steamers. In 1910 the Comox Logging and Railroad Company was founded and for a time was the largest logging company in the British Empire. The rich heritage left behind by the logging is reflected by many of the street names found in the area. The strategic defense of the region saw a Canadian Forces Base open in 1942. Except for a brief closure after WW II this Canadian air base on the West Coast has been the heart of the community.