Weed Coast: The Ideal Strain for a Stay-Cation

"Somewhere along the way, our weekend evolved into a proverbial Russian roulette of weed."

November 17, 2017

By Piper Courtenay / Photo: Drew Coffman on Unsplash


When a friend (who we’ll henceforth refer to as Hank) mentioned he was condo-sitting over the long weekend, I jumped at the opportunity to “help out” (a.k.a take advantage of the hot tub and some uninterrupted Netflix time.) It also came complete with two cats so adorable that they’ve been known to turn this die-hard dog-lover into a crazy cat lady on more than a few occasions.

Promising a staycation of fun and grams, Hank decided to stop by WeeMedical Dispensary on Lonsdale to grab a few “necessities.” Knowing I would likely write about one or two of the strains, he decided to snag a few sativas neither of us had tried before. Somewhere along the way, our weekend evolved into a proverbial Russian roulette of weed.

Friday finally rolled around and I was eager to dive headfirst into our little experiment. So, when Hank smacked a gram of Columbian Red on the counter my immediate reaction was a shock to both of us. Any anticipation I had initially felt was instantly damped when I noticed the bud itself…wasn’t very pretty. Now, I know there is more to life than just looks, but trust me when I say this weed was not having a great day. Columbian Red got its namesake from its vibrant, healthy red pistils (those long skinny hair-like pollen traps you see on your bud). Those were sadly few and far between.

As the saying goes: do not judge a book by its cover. Whether it was the disappointed look on Hank’s face or my painful curiosity, I instead decided to rip out a page of Columbian Red’s ‘book’ and smoke it.

Boy, were my first impressions I wrong. This weed packed a surprisingly exciting high. Despite its less-than-impressive exterior, it had a sweet raspberry-esque aroma and flavour. It was a bit dry, which would account for its pale colour and lack of red, but that didn’t seem to affect the quality of the high. I wouldn’t go so far as to dub this the mother of all mood changers, but its biggest selling point was the immediate serotonin elevation. Any trace of negative thoughts effectively drift away soon after ingestion and are replaced with a very giddy buzz. After a few bouts of the giggles I also realized there was no trace of paranoia—something that often clings on to sativas.

Any trace of negative thoughts effectively drift away soon after ingestion and are replaced with a very giddy buzz.

At one point, I watched Hank dump his entire tray of waffles and bacon face down on the cat-hair-coated carpet, which would classify as an utter tragedy completely warranting a full-blown meltdown. He hardly even seemed phased. He just casually laughed it off as he cleaned up the sticky mess.

It also provides a fairly long-lasting high, so I wouldn’t recommend this for anyone looking for a quick daytime smoke session. At around the two-hour mark the body buzz had noticeably mellowed out, but I was still left with a sturdy head high.

To be clear, I am by no means suggesting anyone should try cannabis that doesn’t look right. I was very comfortable with the fact that it wasn’t completely bunk weed—it was either just lower quality or maybe had sat on the dispensary shelves for too long. Smoking it was not going to be a risk. That being said, if weed doesn’t look healthy, don’t smoke it. I have turned down certain strains on a number of occasions based purely off of poor visual appearance. If the bud is brown or greyish, has a crumb-like texture, is full of stems or smells like old hay—go get your money back. In this case, however, I think I just found a good weed on its bad day.

Columbian Red

The breakdown: Sativa. $10/gram. WeeMedical Dispensary. 109 1st Street East.


Find more of Piper’s pot recommendations here. 

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