Orcas 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 experts and certified in sea kayaking. They are familiar with the natural and cultural history of the area in which you will be traveling, certified in wilderness first aid, and committed to your satisfaction and safety.

sea kayaking vancouver islandsGroup Size
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. 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.

Your Part
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, 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 Nanaimo, airport transfers, accommodation not included in the itinerary, gratuities, meals not included in the itinerary, personal gear, travel/medical/cancellation insurance.


 “I just wanted you to know my son and I have the most terrific time on the Pacific Orcas kayaking trip. Kris and Janet, our guides, were fantastic. They both had such a deep love of the country, respect for the whales, and genuine enthusiam, it was a real treat to have them as our guides.”
Tim Ward, Travel Writer, Washington Post, Washington, DC
kayaking with orcas

Johnstone Strait is located between the northeast coast of Vancouver Island and the British Columbia mainland and it is a sea kayak touring paradise. It is home to a myriad of diverse wildlife, including the largest resident population of orcas (killer whales) in the world. The Strait is a sea kayaking dream, boasting beautiful summer weather, glass-calm waters, and some of the most spectacular wilderness scenery on earth.

We will do our best to locate orca pods. The route we follow, and the area we kayak, do present the best opportunity to view orcas. However, they are wild animals and encompass a huge area, so we cannot guarantee sightings. It is also important to note, that should we encounter orcas, we, by conscience and by agreement with private and governmental stewards, respect a 100-meter off-limits zone.

As kayaking goes, there is little to compare with the thrill of paddling alongside these awesome, exhilarating, and magnificent mammals.pacific orcas 

  • Food: Meals in transit to the put in and return to Nanaimo are your responsibility.
  • Arrival in Departure City (Nanaimo): You should be here at least one day before Day 1.
  • Flexible Itinerary:  Each itinerary is written by the weather, tides, and group interests. Our main goals are a complete immersion in this amazing area, relaxation, wildlife sightings, great food and an amazing time.

Seven Day Tours into orca waters
The tour into Johnstone Strait is ideal for sea kayak and hopefully, encountering orcas . Our guests come from around the world to kayak among killer whales and other marine mammals, camp in an unspoiled wilderness and learn about First Nations culture. We will enjoy the tranquil beauty of this area as we paddle our way and camp at various coastal locations.

These islands have been utilized by First Nation peoples for generations and there is ample evidence of their extensive use of the area.

Day 1: Transport to Telegraph Cove on Vancouver Island. Dinner at the Saltery Pub, a historic building in Telegraph Cove. Camping.

Days 2 to 7: We don’t have an itinerary cast in stone. It will depend on many factors including weather, group ability, and likely location of orca pods. It will essentially be a circle route focused on Johnstone Strait. Camp is moved every night or second night, again with consideration of the above-outlined factors.  

The red enclosed area represents the location of our activities in Johnstone Strait


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