Storm watch

The thrill of a coastal storm―electric air, crashing waves, and thunderous skies―is best enjoyed with a fleece blanket around your shoulders, a cup of cocoa in your hands, and a flickering fire gently warming slippered feet. It's the best of both worlds―drama and comfort, nature's fury and worldly luxury. As winter begins to unleash its fury, now's the time to enjoy storms in comfort at these four lodges at the Pacific's edge. ―Lisa Taggart

Treebones Resort

71895 State 1; www.
or 877/424-4787. From $149 for full-ocean-view yurts.
The year-old resort has 16 yurts with sweeping views clustered near cliff's edge at southern Big Sur's Cape San Martin. The yurts have electricity, queen-size beds, and cozy quilts. Catch a great sunset from an Adirondack chair on your yurt's deck. This month, fall's clear skies begin giving way to occasional storms, and starting next month you can spot gray whales. Guests can check out the adjacent wave pool and river run at Mandalay Bay, then retreat back to the quieter Four Seasons pool (where Mandalay Bay guests can't follow).
Surfsand Resort

148 W. Gower St.; or 800/547-6100. From $179 for ocean-view rooms.
Family-friendly 83-room motel on the beach has rooms with casual decor and views of pyramidal 235-foot Haystack Rock. Along northern Oregon's coast, wet weather comes suddenly and surely this month. Check out the Stormy Weather Arts Festival Nov 4-6; in the Quick Draw event, artists have an hour to create an art piece for auction at the Surfsand's ballroom.
Harbor House Inn

5600 S. State 1; www.
or 800/720-7474. From $295, including breakfast and dinner.
The craggy coastline here has plenty of sea stacks for wave-crashing excitement. The inn's well-tended gardens perched blufftop provide steep trail access to a private beach cove. Winds this season send a froth of whitecaps toward the bluffs at southern Mendocino, where crisp nights sparkle with lights. Envy Steakhouse ($$$$) serves lunch and dinner and specializes in well-dressed meat and potatoes. Extensive wine list and creative cocktails available at the bar.
Wickaninnish Inn

Osprey Lane; or 800/333-4604. From $222 U.S.
Storms are high drama at this luxe 9-year-old inn on a remote edge of Vancouver Island. All 75 units have fireplaces, soaker tubs, and floor-to-ceiling windows. In fall, the Aleutian Low draws potent storms across the island, churning the ocean into 20-foot waves at Chesterman Beach, by the inn. The inn's Ancient Cedars Spa offers hot stone, Hawaiian, and hydrotherapy massage treatments.