Three Trip Ideas

  • This topic has 10 replies, 8 voices, and was last updated 7 years ago by Susan Servos-Sept.
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  • #12856
    Reed Clarke

    Rainy day, time to throw out some trip concepts. I’m going to try to be brief here, see if I can avoid “Tolstoy goes camping”.

    If you are interested in camping trips to any of these three regions, please respond with 1) the time of year you would have available for a trip, 2) the number of days you have available, and 3) the rough distance you can paddle per day on a multi-day trip.

    With this information, I can then start to work with you on creating a trip. Once we have settled on a plan, we can submit this for listing as an official SKABC trip. Others could join, but the trip concept would be established.

    Trip A: Jervis Inlet. This includes upper Jervis, Hotham Sound and Nelson Island areas. (Okay, let’s add Sechelt Inlet, too, just for fun.) The options here are infinite. A two-day trip to Nelson Island is possible. So is a three-day trip to Hotham Sound. Then there are the week-long (at a minimum) efforts to reach the end of Jervis (seldom paddled but very nice) and Princess Louisa Inlet.

    Trip B: Desolation Sound Beyond Curme. Sure the Curme Islands are nice, but so is Homfray Channel, the Rendezvous Islands, the Penn Islands and a host of other places that can be accessed from Lund or Okeover Inlet. You will have to have at least a week available for this. Even the simplest of trips up Homfray Channel or Lewis Channel will take two or three days in each direction.

    Trip C: Central Coast Out Of Bella Bella. Set aside two weeks for this one. There is no point in travelling this far for a short paddle. And, you know what, in two weeks of paddling the Central Coast, you will only begin to see what this region has to offer. It is an incredibly complex set of islands and channels. The one thing to keep in mind here is that ferry bookings are essential. So, if there is interest, the sooner we set this up, the better.

    I know this is all somewhat vague. But, if you are interested in paddling through any of these three regions, let me know and we’ll work something up that fits you and your schedule.


    Reed Clarke

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  • #13235
    Susan Servos-Sept

    Don’t think my last email went through. I would be interested in trip C. July and August are free for me so far. I can do 5-6 hours a day as long as not at killer speeds. Interested in hearing more about this trip.



    Susan Servos-Sept

    The trips sound great. I would be interested in learning more about trip C . I have July and August open still. Paddling 5 – 6 hrs a day would be fine as long as it was not at high speed. Keep me posted, please.



    Anja Pakendorf

    Hi ! I would be interested in a central coast trip or princess Louisa Inlet.   I have aug 3 mid day to Aug 14   and Aug  19 onward.     I also would love to explore the Area around Broughton Island.









    Beverly Wagner



    I am very interested in the Central Coast trip.  I am retired, so time is very flexible.  The only thing I have on my calendar right now is a bike trip from Aug 10 to Aug 17.  Don’t mind moving every day and can do 5-6 hours of paddling.


    Maureen Benzon

    For those who think in nautical terms, 25km is about 14nm. You mentioned the best time to arrive is at high tide. Based on this, What would be the best date to arrive, and maybe we could work the trip dates around that. Is there somewhere to ditch the wheels at Bella Bella?


    Reed Clarke

    Okay, we are making headway on a Central Coast trip.

    There are now four of us that have expressed interest. This week, I will be discussing specific dates with the group. We are likely looking at August.

    The trip will be fairly relaxed, 5-6 hours of paddling per day, which likely puts us in the 20-25 kilometre range. The area around Bella Bella offers plenty of flexibility, depending on what the weather serves up. If things get rough, there are numerous places we can go for protected paddling conditions.

    This really is a great opportunity to paddle in a unique, and beautiful, part of the BC coast.

    While there will be space to take on more paddlers as we go forward, this may be your last chance to have a say in when the trip takes place and how many days we’ll be out.

    So, if you’ve been mulling over joining this trip, now would be a good time to step forward!

    Cheers, Reed

    Reed Clarke

    Thanks for responding Ellen.

    The answer to your question is — not cheap. Keep in mind there are two ferries. The Horseshoe Bay to Nanaimo ferry will cost around $100 for two people and vehicle. Then, the Port Hardy to Bella Bella ferry will be $131 per person (including their kayak). These are both one-way costs, so repeat for the return trip.

    In addition, parking at the ferry terminal in Port Hardy is $50 per week for a vehicle. If we can’t get parking spots at the terminal, we would have to arrange for alternate parking and transportation to the terminal, likely raising the cost a bit for leaving our vehicles in Port Hardy.

    So, as you can see, the straight forward plan would be to drive to Port Hardy and wheel the kayaks onto the ferry. The alternative is to drive to Bella Coola. For those with loads of time, this is a fun way to get there. But, for now, I’ll assume the direct route would be of more interest.

    Some important notes. A tarp is essential for paddling in this area. I use an MEC Guide tarp (the sil version) and put it over my tent. There is a story behind this opinion, and it involves the Central Coast. I will tell it to you when we meet. (If you are not a tarpologist, note the knots and tarps course coming up on the 18th.)

    Also, it is best to choose a ferry arriving just before a full tide. The launch area at McLaughlin Bay (where the ferry docks at Bella Bella) is very rough. High tide could be the difference between running straight into the water and paddling off versus having to off-load the kayaks to wheel them over the rocky terrain.

    We don’t have to paddle far the day we arrive. But, we definitely don’t want to camp at McLaughlin. There are no washroom facilities available when the ferry terminal office is closed. There are people living up the hill. Ya, awkward!

    For now, let’s leave trip timing open and see if there are others interested in joining the party. We don’t want to wait too long, mind you. The Central Coast ferries can get booked up. Even spots for kayaks are limited.

    Ellen Ayer

    Hi Reed, Thank you for posting these trip concepts. My husband and I have kayaked for about 25 years (Gulf Islands, Desolation Sound, west coast, Sechelt Inlet) but we are not Olympian paddlers. We could paddle roughly 5-6 hours per day. We’d possibly be available for a trip mid to late May to early June; or mid July to September. We could possibly be available for 2 weeks depending on the timing of the trip. Do you have a sense of the cost of ferry transportation for the central coast trip?

    Ellen Ayer & Mark Merry

    Sarka Lhotak

    Hi Reed, I am interested in trips A and B, Jervis inlet and Desolation sound. I will have Thursday to Sundays available through the school year (helping regularly with grandchildren Mon and Wed but some exception may be arranged) and my summer is more or less open. I can paddle 25-30 km every day on a multiday trip. I have experience from Ontario, Georgian bay and lake Superior, I am new to here.  I don’t mind moving camp every day.



    Nick Heath

    What a wonderful offer, Reed! I’m game for any or all of the above, although a blast around Desol Sd beyond Curme Is comes tops for now (which doesn’t help much in defining the trip specifics. Any time snow is not forecast is good.  Rushed trips always seems – well- rushed, so even the local trips likely deserve generous time allotments although to me this means not moving every single  day, rather than moving each, day but only a short distance.  Anyhow, I’ll lurk a while and see what other suggestions you get.


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