Nootka Sound Itinerary
Wilderness Adventures in British Columbia & Yukon since 1988
Due to the unpredictability of weather, participants must be willing to expect the unexpected. As we are moving camp each day, there may be the need to paddle for longer than intended periods to accommodate winds, or rough water. Unsafe water conditions may necessitate sitting on shore until conditions for safe travel present themselves.
Our guides have many years of experience in the outdoors and are expert and certified in sea kayaking. They are familiar with the natural and cultural history of the area in which you will be traveling, trained in wilderness first aid, and committed to your satisfaction and safety.
In order to minimize our impact on the area we are visiting, for safety, and for creating a better environment for group interaction, we keep our group size to a maximum of 10 participants.
Summer temperatures from July until mid September are generally quite comfortable with temperatures ranging from 18 – 25 degrees Celsius / 70 – 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Early July and later September will have the cooler temperatures, and at any time of year we can have rain and wind, with temperatures occasionally as low as 13 C / 55 F. It is best to come prepared for any type of weather.
Both beginners and experienced hikers and paddlers of all ages join us on our trips. All you need are the items identified on our equipment/clothing list, be reasonably fit, have a sense of adventure, and be willing to accept the unexpected.
Our menu is designed to fulfill the nutritional needs of our expeditions. Lunches and dinners are diverse, often supplemented with fresh vegetables and local favourites. There is always enough food to offer seconds. Guests are often surprised and pleased with what we offer on our menu. We do accommodate special dietary needs.
What We Include
Transportation from Nanaimo and return, national park user fees, sea kayaks, paddles, PFDs [life jacket], spray skirts, camping fees, cooking gear, camp stoves, meals/snacks/beverages on the expedition, tents, meal preparations, tarps, major first aid supplies, emergency radio or satellite phone, and professional guides.
What Is Not Included
Transportation to Vancouver Island, airport transfers, accommodation not included in itinerary, gratuities, meals not included in itinerary, personal gear,
We have designed our kayaking itinerary for Nootka Sound to allow for a leisurely experience while exploring all that the sound has to offer. We will kayak to the cove where Cook anchored in 1778. Little has changed in two and a half centuries. We will kayak and stop at a lighthouse,explore an unique church with stained glass windows presenting European and indigenous history of Nootka Sound, and visit the traditional home of the Mowachaht peoples. There are many small islands, coves, rocky coastlines, beaches and rainforest to explore within Nootka Sound’s protected waters. The waters are rich with wildlife including grey and orca whales, sea otters, seals and sea lions, eagles, wolves, and bears.Vancouver are your responsibility.
Arrival in Departure City: You should be here at least one day before Day 1.
DAY ONE: Meet at designated location in Nanaimo. Drive to Cougar Creek where we will spend the night and prepare ourselves and the kayaks for launching on day 2.
DAY TWO: Load kayaks and launch. Time will be devoted to developing paddle strokes where necessary before and during our journey to our beautiful half-moon shaped campsite on Bligh (named for the then future captain of the ill-fated BOUNTY) Island, in the Spanish Pilot Group.
DAY THREE: We will embark on a day trip from our camp to visit Resolution Cove, where Captain Cook mounted a commemorative plaque on the rocks following his anchorage in Nootka Sound. We will also paddle through the Spanish Pilot group before returning to our camp.
DAY FOUR: Paddle across Cook Channel to Friendly Cove, known as Yuqout by the local Mowachaht peoples. This is where Captain Cook first landed on the west coast in 1778. Visit the chapel with its stained glass windows depicting Captain Cook’s visit.
DAY FIVE: Explore Santa Gertrudis Cove and the Saavedra Islands before crossing back over Cook Channel to camp again on Bligh Island.
DAY SIX: We will journey back to our put-in at Cougar Creek. Load the kayaks back onto the trailer and drive back to Gold River for lunch then continue our journey back to Nanaimo, arriving sometime in the late afternoon /early evening.