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Desolation Sound, is a fantastic area for sea kayakers! In spite of its name, Desolation Sound is not desolate (Captain Vancouver would have disagreed). Actually, the Sound is the largest protected marine park in Canada -- jutting into the Pacific mainland coast of British Columbia. Sea kayakers to this area have 37 miles of (mostly protected) coastline to explore and near zero development (click for Google map).
Sea kayakers are frequently drawn to Desolation Sound due to it's reputation for warm protected waters and majestic scenery. Imagine swimming in ocean waters that warm to 79-degrees Fahrenheit - hard to believe but it's doable in summer months, in Desolation Sound.
Marine life abounds in Desolation Sound -- many inlets are brimming with oysters, cod, shrimp and jellyfish. Sea kayakers should note than an abundance of oysters also leads to an abundance of barnacle-encrusted shoreline - kayakers must be careful when landing. Scraping a kayak hull against a shoreline full of oysters can result in a fair amount of hull damage. Also, sea kayakers must do their navigational preparation ahead of time and be forewarned - some of the more remote inlets in this area, such as Toba Inlet, have very little kayak-approachable shoreline due to a more fjord-like geography (the shoreline is vertical).
Desolation Sound and its inlets really are an ideal location for sea kayakers to experience. Many sea kayakers undertake their first multi-day trip on these mostly protected and sunny waters. Venturing out with a guide or outfitter is still recommended due to the level of boat traffic and the remoteness of the area (click for BC Parks info. on Desolation Sound).
Best selection of books on the Northwest.
Sea Kayak Desolation Sound & the Sunshine Coast by Heather Harbord. Written by an avid sea kayaker and canoeist this paddling guide to Desolation Sound and the Strait of Georgia provides historical travel information on a part of the Inner Passage between Vancouver Island and the BC mainland. Order now...
The Wild Coast Volume 3: A Kayaking, Hiking and Recreation Guide for the South BC Coast and East Vancouver Island by John Kimantas. This book provides information for the entire BC coastline. Each trip includes details on hazards, geography, ecology, history, attractions and hikes for each location. Color maps and photography are also included. Order now...
Sea Kayak the Gulf Islands by Mary Ann Snowden. This guide leads paddlers of all levels to the best kayaking waters on the BC coast. Resources include 23 trips that are outlined with information on tides, currents, safety, charts and launching. Order now...
Paddling Through History: Sea Kayak Vancouver and Victoria by Aileen Stalker and Andrew Nolan. This inner city paddling guide enables you to explore the history with the story behind the people and places and explains the names and geology. This book is illustrated with maps and photographs. Order now...
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