|Jun 10th - Jun 30th||Jul 1st - Jul 19th||Jul 20th - Aug 31st|
What better way to spend a couple of hours in the early evening? Paddle out into Johnstone Strait and along the shoreline of Northern Vancouver Island.
Family fun and relaxed nature interpretation
Telegraph Cove, Northern Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Canada.
Start and End Time:
Starts at 5-30pm and returns around 7-30pm
Every day from June 10 to August 31
None. Bring a snack and something to drink
None. We use stable tandem Sea Kayaks and provide all required kayaking equipment
This trip is suitable for all over 5 years
There are always Bald Eagles, fascinating kelp, tiny jumping fish, sea stars and other intertidal life to see. Admire the distant mountain scenes of the British Columbia mainland and explore the very edges of our rain forest wilderness. We can always find something you have likely never seen before.
While this trip is about having fun and being out on the ocean, the big question we always get asked is will I see whales on an evening trip? While the chances of a whale encounter are minimal, they do happen on a few trips a week, especially during late July through the third week of August. More frequently, but again not on every trip, we will see the Dall’s porpoise, seals, deer, mink and river otters. We will sometimes even see a black bear searching the shoreline for a free meal. Our guides are in constant communication with each other using their marine VHF radios. If there is any reports of the Orcas, bears or other large mammals in your immediate area, we will always do our very best to ensure no opportunity is missed to see them.
This trip is an ideal way to be out on the water on those warm summer evenings and is a non-strenuous means to visit the wilderness. It is suitable for everyone. No previous experience is required as we use very stable two and three seat, enclosed sea kayaks, provide all paddling equipment, utilize qualified sea kayak guides and conduct a pre-departure training and safety briefing.
As we run these tours with small group sizes, it is advisable to call ahead or come visit with us at the store in Telegraph Cove in order to reserve your place and avoid disappointment.
A start point like no other.
- We provide you free parking next to our store.
- We launch the kayaks from right outside the store.
- Paddle for 2 minutes and you are out into Johnstone Strait.
- We frequently see eagles, mink & otters before we even leave the boat ramp.
All Equipment Provided
We provide all of the kayaking equipment. Come with the clothing and personal items noted in ‘What to Bring’ and we do the rest.
We even provide you with quality dry bags to keep your camera and other belongings dry.
What to bring on my 2 Hour sea kayaking tour
This is a water sport and you will get a little wet while getting in and out of the kayak.
- Something to drinkl Water works great!
- Shoes you do not mind getting soaked as you will get your feet wet. Please do not bring flip-flops or thongs as these have been the cause of many cuts and falls on the boat ramp and beaches.
- Board shorts or long synthetic pants work well for your lower body.
- Layers work well for the upper half.
- Bring a hat or cap; they work great to keep you warm, keep the sun out of your eyes or the rain off your head.
- Sunscreen; even if the sun is not shining, UV rays get reflected from the water and will burn you.
- A camera or binoculars; We will provide a dry bag to keep them safe and dry.
- A snack,
- If you have allergies that require the use of an EPI Pen - Bring It!
For maximum comfort while kayaking avoid cotton clothing, this includes jeans.
While tipping is not mandatory it is very much appreciated. Your guide works very hard to make sure you get everything you hope for from your trip. If you think you were well looked after a suggested guide tip is 10% of your trip cost.
There is no ATM in Telegraph Cove however, you may tip them via your credit or debit card on return to our store.
Go ahead - make their day.
While tipping is not mandatory, if you think you were well looked after a suggested guide tip is 10% of your trip cost.
Ocean touring sea kayaks are surprisingly stable and comfortable, especially the tandem kayaks we use for our less experienced guests. A pre-launch training session will give you some of the basic skills that will help keep you safe while your guides are well versed in paddling, the area and general safety. They are right there with you the whole time to ensure your safety and enjoyment.
Our average group size is 5 people, however we conduct our tours with as few as 2 and as many as 12.
Our customers come from all over the world. They may be younger or older than you but you can be sure they are just as excited to be here as you are. We have found that those traveling without children tend to prefer to kayak with adult only groups. In order to try and ensure all of our guests get the maximum enjoyment from our tours we run separate tours for families.
The amount of time on the water will vary but will typically be in the region of 5-6 hours per day.
It will be a fully enclosed Sea Kayak from one of a variety of manufacturers including Seaward Kayaks, Boreal Designs, Necky Kayaks and Current Designs.To ensure we can provide all guests with a great experience, we predominantly use tandem kayaks on our tours. Our kayaking tours focus on wildlife observation and having fun. As such, we often need to cross open water and paddle against wind or ocean currents to be in an optimal viewing spot. For those who are not experienced ocean kayakers, paddling single kayaks when others are in faster, tandem kayaks can become very tiring, very quickly and have a negative impact on the safety and enjoyment of others in the group. On occasion, if tour capacity allows or there are an odd total number of participants, we may add some single kayaks to the trip, which will be shared among guests interested in paddling them. Unfortunately as people have wildly differing opinions of their skill levels, stamina and endurance, we do not guarantee exclusive use of single kayaks to any of our guests.
We prefer to use our kayaks as we are familiar with their capacity and appropriateness for a given trip. We have also found that those who bring their own typically do not wish others to paddle them. Should you really wish to bring your own, we do require it be an appropriate kayak for the type of trip you are undertaking and we will need to utilize space within it for the group gear. Contact us, identifying kayak make and model and we will see what we can do. We do reserve the right to inspect the kayak prior to departure and have you paddle one of our kayaks if necessary.
We choose guides based on many variables. Naturally they must be appropriately qualified and able to kayak, provide instruction and keep you safe on the water, but we demand much more than this. We employ guides from Canada; Many of them have grown up around our coast or have migrated to BC as they have grown up. We employ guides who can interpret our environment; They need to be able to identify our local fauna and flora and communicate their knowledge to you. We look for language skills; Many of our guides are fluent in both English and French, while others bring Spanish or German to the mix.
North Island Kayak has been providing sea kayak tours on northern Vancouver Island since 1991. The current owners took over in 2006.
People of all ages and fitness levels enjoy kayaking as it can be a very low impact activity. You need only be in average physical condition – For our multi-day sea kayak tours, if you can manage an easy day hike, you will likely be able to participate comfortably. Should you have upper body conditions affecting arms, wrists or hands, please contact us.
It can happen – but it is not likely on a guided sea kayaking tour. Part of your pre-launch training session is instruction and demonstration of what to do in the event of capsize. Should it happen, your qualified guides have had extensive training in rescue and have the skills to deal with any situation that may arise. Their focus is on prevention rather than cure.
There have been no incidents involving wild whales and humans or kayaks. On occasion they have come very close and even under our kayaks but we have never had one actually touch us.
You multi-day tour will be returning to Telegraph Cove typically between 3 and 4 pm, however it can occasionally be earlier or later due to weather or logistical reasons. Should you have tight connections to be made on the day of return, please let us know at booking or prior to departure so we can try to meet your expectations. After your trip, why not visit the Whale Museum or relax on the deck of the Old Saltery and watch the comings & goings of Historic Telegraph Cove.
We welcome children on the tours, however we try not to mix adult groups and family groups on the same trip. We can accommodate your children in a number of ways; triple kayaks or paired up in a double with a strong paddler. It is a safe and wonderful experience for kids and as family! We offer discounted rates for children on some tours. For multi-day kayak adventures we have found it is typically best to schedule small family groups, please contact us for further information.
We recommend that you bring two sets of clothing for your kayaking tour. One set that you will primarily wear while in the kayaks. This should consist of layer-able clothes that will cope well and remain comfortable should they get damp or even wet. The second set of clothing is for around camp and should be selected to keep you warm and cozy during the evening. Again layers provide maximum flexibility. Avoid jeans and cotton shirts or sweaters,as once they get damp they can be very tough to dry and provide you with minimal residual warmth. If you can stick with synthetic quick dry materials or wool for your clothing, you will likely have a much better experience in our wilderness.
Please take a look at the “What to Bring” tab on each tour description page.
Yes! To legally conduct these sea kayaking tours, one needs permits from many different organizations including BC Parks, to operate in any of the local marine parks; The BC Ministry of Natural Resource Operations, to utilize any of the government owned lands, Private Individuals and businesses to utilize launch sites, water, etc. and our many North Island First Nations in order to utilize their lands and traditional homes. You can be assured that we have covered all bases. This is a great question to ask anyone who you intend to book a sea kayaking tour with. Permits are time consuming and expensive and not everyone you find on google bothers to adhere. Not only can operation without appropriate permits void any liability insurance they may have but it can also ruin a vacation if ejected from a park or other location.
As Killer whales, sea lions and bears are the top predators in their environment, the chances of seeing them are mostly a factor of how long you spend in their world and when you choose to come to Telegraph Cove.
- Do not expect to see Orcas on a 2 hour trip. While it does happen it is a rare and special event.
- The best time to see killer whales on a kayaking trip is August.
Fortunately, while maybe not as exhilarating as the big mammals, there are many other critters and spectacular sights that we can find on every trip.
* The creatures listed below are in order of sighting probability - Those near the top, we will see most often.
|June||Early July||Mid July||End of July to Mid August||Mid Aug to Mid Sept||Mid Sept to End Sept|
Select the date you wish to join and click 'Book Now'. You will be asked to fill in your contact details and to review the Terms & Conditions. You will be taken to our secure payment page and asked for a credit card. While payment is processing, you will be asked to give information about your party and then given an option to print the invoice (PDF). A copy of this transaction will be automatically emailed to you.
If you need any assistance or would prefer a real person to deal with we will be happy to hear from you. Call us (+1-250-928-3114 or 1-877-949-7707), or email us