Octopus Islands Tour
Abundant intertidal wildlife, island camping, hiking, and marine park exploration – this trip has it all.
June 20 – 25
July 11 – 16
Aug 11 – 16
Aug 27 – Sept 1
Easy to Moderate
$1295 cdn (+ 5% tax)
Why We Love This Trip
The Octopus Islands Tour is a great choice for those who are having trouble deciding on a trip – It has a little bit of everything! Full days of paddling mixed with relaxing exploration, stunning island campsites, excellent marine-life viewing, a hike to a forested emerald lake…
About the Area
The Octopus Islands are a mosaic of rocks and islets that beg to be explored by kayak. Forested shorelines offer superb natural camping sites and the chance to see plenty of terrestrial wildlife and bird species. But some of the most spectacular sights are found when you look down. Bordered on all sides by tidal rapids, the Octopus Islands boast clear, nutrient rich waters and an abundance of marine organisms. At times we may share our journey with seals, sea lions, porpoises, and dolphins. Humpback whales, once hunted close to extinction have made a dramatic resurgence in recent years, and sightings are likely, though not a certainty on this trip.
The powerful tidal rapids that this trip crosses (at calm, slack currents) form a boundary between the traditional territories of the Kwak’waka’wakw and Coast Salish First Nations peoples. At times during this trip we paddle in the traditional territory of the Klahoose, Xwemahlkwe, and Lekwiltok regional bands. Little remains of their original settlements in the islands, but observant paddlers will spot shell middens and pictographs (rock art) along the shorelines. Ancient “clam gardens” can also be spotted during low tide in the Octopus Islands.
The Octopus Islands Expedition begins with a boat ride to Coast Mountain Lodge on Read Island. After settling into sleeping cabins, we’ll enjoy a comprehensive kayak skills lesson and pre-trip briefing. We’ll follow up the exercise with a soak in our wood-fired hot tub or creekside sauna, and a gourmet dinner featuring local seafood and garden produce.
Next morning we’ll pack up kayaks and begin our journey. We’ll travel self-supported; supplied with deliciously healthy lodge-packed meals, snacks, and Lannie’s famous cookies of course! Our paddling journey will take us along diverse forested shorelines and through the Surge Narrows Marine Park where we’ll have excellent opportunities to observe marine mammals. After choosing our favourite island campsite in the Octopus Islands, we’ll plan to stay for two days to fully experience all that the area has to offer. We’ll explore the islands by kayak, hike to and swim in a forested lake, and make sure to spend a little time relaxing as well.
• Trip begins 1:00pm first day, drop-off noon last day.
• Maximum 10 participants with 2 kayak guides.
• Single and double kayaks.
• Paddling: 3 to 5 hours of kayaking per day (9-12 km (6-8 mi)).
• Sea conditions: usually calm, rising to max 0.5 metre (1.5 ft)
• Beaches: low sloping sandy gravel and rocky islets; may be slippery when wet.
• All kayaking equipment
• Group camping gear and shelter
• Tent (you choose single or double)
• Therm-a-Rest inflatable sleeping pad
• Dry bags for personal gear
• All meals & snacks
• Professional skills training & guiding
• Boat transportation to & from CME Lodge
• Boat pickup from end of tour
• Personal clothing and accessories (see our packing list)
• Sleeping bag (available to rent)
• Sense of adventure!