The journey is part of the experience – and expression of the seriousness of one’s intent. One doesn’t take the train to mecca. – Anthony Bourdain
We have been running trips in Desolation Sound since 1995, and as such we know the area very well and value flexibility and spontaneity within the bounds of weather, group dynamic, and considerations for safety and enjoyment.
Guest arrival: 9:00 am sharp.
Arriving at our beautiful oceanfront location on Okeover Inlet, everything is taken care of to ensure a smooth and efficient launch.
To ensure a smooth logistical flow on the first morning, our guided trips need to be on the water by 10:30am. This allows us plenty of time to comfortably paddle the distance from our launch site to the camp (with time for lunch) and provide plenty of time for you to get comfortable and settled in before dinner.
Another consideration for the 9am arrival time is the fact that it is highly likely you are not the only participants on the trip, and arriving late means that other guests (and guides) are waiting around for your arrival, eager to get their own vacation underway. Please give yourself enough time to arrive at our Okeover site in the morning – this may mean coming up from Vancouver a day earlier and staying nearby in Lund or Powell River the night before.
For guests choosing to fly into Powell River from Vancouver, flights do not arrive in Powell River until 8:30am. This will require taking a taxi to our site on Okeover Inlet and will delay your arrival until closer to 9:30am, which is fine. In this case, we ask guests to be well organized by booking the taxi in advance and making sure any personal clothing, etc, they are taking with them in the kayaks can be quickly re-packed into dry bags for the paddle. This will help us get on the water as soon as possible.
Park your vehicle in our shaded private parking lot and walk down to the office, where our operations staff help with your final payment and introduce your guide(s), who will show you to your kayaks and pass out dry bags for you to use, and help with the packing of your personal gear.
All packed, you are led through a brief equipment introduction and safety briefing, and you’re on your way! No need to hop in a van to travel to the launch site with all the gear, we are located right on the water in Okeover Inlet, meaning that your adventure begins the moment you arrive.
Day 2, 3, 4…
You wake to the smell of fresh coffee and rise to the sight of breakfast being prepared in your island camp. After completing your morning routine, we aim to hit the water sometime around 10.30 to explore your surroundings.
There are many things that will fulfill each day. Paddling sleek touring kayaks over colourful marine life and amongst towering mountains or scattered islands and waterways is pure pleasure in itself. We will enhance this with interesting interpretation, great food and perhaps a few really bad jokes. At any rate, we know the areas we tour very well, we’ve been doing this for many years and we look forward to providing a great experience.
Many of our trips consist of a few hours of paddling each morning to a beautiful site for a shoreside lunch, followed by a few more hours to camp, with plenty of on- and off-water breaks as needed to regroup, refresh and refuel along the way; perhaps even some ‘snorkeling with the stars’ while lunch is being prepared on shore.
Definitive routes and camps vary depending on many factors: group paddling speed, time of year, wind and weather considerations and the general wishes of the group. Many trips use one or two central base camps, while others prefer island hopping each day and breaking camp to cover more ground.
Please keep in mind not everyone is created equal. Fitness, experience and even attitude are all factors we must consider. Safety is our number one concern and with that in mind, we can only paddle as fast as the slowest paddler. For those with little experience or whom feel their fitness is below average, paddling in a double kayak can help balance the scales. We carry very nice double touring kayaks. They are comfortable, sleek and fast boats to paddle. Many guests also appreciate the stability of doubles – especially when sea state is less than desirable! Please let us know before the trip if you feel a double would best suit your needs.
In the evenings, relax by the ocean with a glass of beer or wine while your guides prepare another creative and appetizing meal from fresh ingredients you never thought possible in such a wilderness environment!
We aim to return to Okeover on the last day at approximately 3pm, depending on variables such as wind, current and group speed. From here we unpack the kayaks one last time, load up the car, and say goodbye to our new friends after an unforgettable few days in Desolation.
We typically do not have the ability to return earlier on this final day – for example, so certain guests can rush off to catch a flight or ferry – as there are usually more than one group of guests on each tour and returning early on this last day will unfairly impact on the enjoyment and flow of this last day of kayaking.
If you need to rush back home on the afternoon of your final day, we ask that you please check the ferry or airline schedule ahead of time and plan or book your ongoing transport at later times that correspond to the above schedule. Thank you for your understanding!