Jump in a Ocean Kayak For a Couple of Hours or Go On a Multi-Day Adventure Tour
Taking out an ocean kayak on Vancouver Island is a highly developed sport. Just about every town will have one or more kayak shops that will provide a full range of services. You can rent for a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon or go on a multi-day adventure vacation where the guides do all the cooking.
On this site we will give you the basics of sea kayaking and show you the beautiful sites on and around Vancouver Island and the other islands that lie between it and the main land.
1. We live in an area where we can get out in a ocean kayak for a couple of hours on a Sunday afternoon and even take Koby, our small family dog.
2. In a kayak you can get quite close to nature. We took this picture of a majestic bald eagle with a ten times optical zoom lens.
3. It is fun to organize a weekend sea kayaking outing with some of your office mates. The group photo is mandatory.
4. Many tour operators on Vancouver Island take you and the kayaks by boat or by van and trailer to a remote location before starting your sea adventure. This way you spend more time close to nature and further away from noise and people.
5. Many multi-day ocean kayak tours include over-night camping. Here we are packing up getting ready to leave camp in the morning.
Below the main picture (left to right)
6. There is nothing like a crystal clear morning after a rainy night. This picture was taken in Sept. on a kayak trip to Desolation Sound.
7. After a hearty camp breakfast we are all ready to go kayaking. One of our tour guides checks over the ocean kayaks before we start out.
8. Once on the water it is important to stay close together, especially when crossing large bodies of water. Bright colors like we are wearing here let us be seen more clearly by other boaters.
9. Sea kayaking often presents the change to snap a beautiful sunset. This shot is the same vista show in the morning shot of picture 6. Here we are camped in the Curme Islands in Desolation Sound.
10. This sunset picture is taken from Quadra Island overlooking Discovery passage between Quadra and Campbell River on Vancouver Island. The April Point Lodge has kayaks for rent and this view for a late summer supper.
Always Safety First
If you are new to ocean kayaking your first thoughts should be about safety. Any kayak shop worth their salt will outfit you with all the essentials.
These include life vest, bailing pump, extra paddle and paddle float. All these safety items are illustrated in Photo 1 of the ocean kayak gallery shown on this page.
You will notice that they are normally kept, close at hand, on the deck of the kayak securely stowed under the elastic straps that are built into the boat. Normally you would be expected to bring your own water bottle.
Needless to say you should always wear the life vest when you are out on the water. Modern life vests are light, well ventilated and do not restrict your freedom of movement. Although you can't see it here, even Koby the dog has his life jacket on!
I hope that I have not put you off with all this safety talk. A ocean kayak is really a very stable boat and tremendous fun to paddle.
Get Some Basic Instruction - Take a Lesson To Two
There is no substitute for a few lesson on the basics of the sport. Even if you learn all your theory here and elsewhere on the net a couple of lessons will give you a chance to put your new knowledge into practice in the kayak.
Keeping the kayak stable while getting in will keep you dry and greatly enhanced your paddling experience. Other basics you will need to know are how to do a self rescue if you should tip over and how to assist others to get back into their kayak if they should capsize.
Commentary On the Other Pictures
Picture 2 shows a majestic bald eagle that we were fortunate enough to see up close when kayaking on the lower reaches of the Campbell River Estuary. Picture 3 is here so that I will remember to remind you that getting a group together from your office or your book club can be a great way to discovery Kayaking. We will explore group outing possibilities on Vancouver Island.
Pictures 4 and 5 are from a group kayak trip that we took to Rendezvous and Read Island with a local tour operator. I will explore this adventure vacation in another page shortly.
Pictures 6 thru 9 are from another kayak trip to Desolation Sound. Again complete details of this trip on another page in the near future.
Picture 10 is taken from April point when we were having dinner following a day of kayaking in the area. If you get the chance to jump in an ocean kayak this summer I have one piece of advise.
Go for it!