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Raincoast Education Society


The Raincoast Education Society (RES) was established in August 2000 with a mission to help shape an environmentally sustainable future for the Clayoquot and Barkley Sound region through education and community stewardship. Thier aim is to enable citizens within and beyond the Clayoquot and Barkley Sound region to participate knowledgeably, effectively and responsibly in the work of shaping this future for our region and for our planet. The Raincoast Education Society (RES) is an independent non-profit society and registered Canadian charity.

RES seeks to accomplish their mission by delivering a broad range of high-quality educational and interpretive programs, such as guided walks, seminar series, summer camps, school programs, and slideshows focused on the natural environment, cultures, and communities of the Clayoquot and Barkley Sound region. They also bring outside educators and experts to the region for programs and presentations. 
They work with a broad range of public, private and community institutions and agencies, both within and beyond the region, in order to establish and maintain a high-caliber education and interpretive network and to reflect a wide range of perspectives in all educational and interpretive activities. Learn more...

Guided Walks...

The expert guides of RES draw on both scientific and cultural perspectives to provide a unique understanding of the globally significant ecosystems of the region. From the rare coastal rainforests to the rich marine environment to the impressive wildlife migrations, guided walks explore the incredible diversity of flora and fauna. The most popular guided walks are their rainforest walks, intertidal walks and mudflat walks (as listed below), but they are always happy to customize tours for groups.

Rainforest Walks   Intertidal Walks   Mudflat Walks

Rainforest Walks

Coastal temperate rainforests are one of the world’s rarest ecosystems, comprising less than 0.1% of the earth’s surface. British Columbia is home to more than 25% of the earth's remaining old-growth temperate rainforests, with Clayoquot Sound containing the largest tracts of ancient rainforest on Vancouver Island. RES guided rainforest walks will provide you with a unique understanding of this globally significant ecosystem. Learn more...

Join RES for the following weekly walk in July & August of 2015:

  • Interpretive Walk at Cox Bay Beach. Every Wednesday, 10am to 11am, July 8 to August 26, 2015.

Intertidal Walks

RES intertidal walks are a great way to learn about the fascinating creatures that inhabit our coastal tide pools. Tide pools exist in the rocky intertidal zone, subject to two high-tides and two low-tides everyday. Thus, half the time the rocky intertidal zone is underwater and half the time it is exposed to the air. Not only do the hearty marine creatures that inhabit this rugged environment have to deal with fierce waves. Learn more...

Mudflat Walks

The Tofino Mudflats Wildlife Management Area (TMWMA) is the only protected area in the District of Tofino, and is home to dozens of marine and terrestrial species, from shrimp, clams and packs of wolves to herons, owls and migrating shorebirds. RES mudflat walks provide a unique, hands-on introduction to this rich and complex ecosystem. Tours can be customized to the group and can stay close to shore or take off your shoes and head out into the mud. Learn more...


The Raincoast Education Society hosts 3 major events each year:

The Tofino Shorebird Festival

Every year from late April through May, flocks of sandpipers, plovers, whimbrels, and many other shorebirds pass through the Tofino area. Thousands stop here to feed and rest as they make their impressive journey from South and Central America northward to their Arctic breeding grounds. Learn more...

The Tofino Lantern Festival

The Tofino Lantern Festival is their 'signature' community event and fundraiser, drawing the young and old with an unbelievable variety of hand made lanterns. The Tofino Lantern Festival was born in 2001 and since then has grown to feature local musicians and artists and includes a ‘permanent collection’ of locally-created West Coast lanterns. Learn more...

The Raincoast Re-Skilling Festival

The Raincoast Re-Skilling Festival is designed to provide local residents with the skills to begin the transition away from a globalized, fossil-fuel dependent community towards a more localized, self-reliant community. The Raincoast Re-Skilling Festival provides a space to share knowledge about specific skill-sets and to highlight individuals, organizations, and businesses in our communities that have teachable and important skills. Learn more...


RES field classes are designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the rich natural landscape of Clayoquot Sound. Designated as a UNESCO biosphere reserve, Clayoquot Sound provides a unique opportunity to study the interconnections between the rich marine ecosystems of the Pacific Ocean and some of the largest tracts of old-growth coastal temperate rainforest in the world.

Rooted in the Nuu-chah-nulth philosophy of Hishuk-ish-tsawalk (everything is connected/everything is one), RES courses provide opportunities to study natural ecosystems from a holistic perspective, and to engage with specific ecological components through hands-on, outdoor-based learning. Each course focuses on different aspects of the complex ecosystems of the region, from fungi to birds to wolves and more.

Upcoming 2015 Courses: 
The Raincoast Institute offers high quality continuing education courses that inspire adults and young adults to connect with natural ecosystems. Click here for a complete list of course being offered.