Posted by: cherylyoung | November 15, 2012

There is no end to the beauty that is British Columbia

Hakai Luxvbalis Conservancy Area on the central

coast of British Columbia is the largest marine

park in the province and one of the better-known

paddling areas in BC.

This 304,000-acre (123,000-hectare) area

encompasses a large archipelago of outstanding

natural beauty and recreational value.

 

From fully exposed shorelines to rolling, forested

hills and 3,000-foot (1000-metre) peaks, Hakai

offers some of the most varied and scenic coastline

in the province.

Special features such as lagoons and reversing

tidal rapids, beaches, all-weather anchorages,

tombolos, and an intricate network of coves, inlets,

and channels make it an ideal area for boaters,

anglers, scuba divers, naturalists – and experienced

sea kayakers.

 

Many parts of the so-called Discovery Coast are

relatively unknown to kayakers.

 

It will appeal to resourceful paddlers who seek a

sense of pioneering, which includes laying some

groundwork, discovering new fishing spots,

wildlife watching, dealing with unknown tidal

currents, and finding new campsites.

One of the better areas to paddle within Hakai is

Spider Anchorage, southeast of Spider Island,

which consists of sheltered bays, white sand

beaches, and a multitude of marine life.

 

Another popular anchorage is Pruth Bay on the

north side of Calvert Island, reached via

Kwakshua Channel.

 

The recreation area has no developed facilities and

has wilderness campsites only.

Freshwater is available at some beaches, but

creeks dry up during summer, and visitors are

advised to carry a supply.

 

Paddlers can enjoy the many small straits, exposed

coastline, and islands accessible from the

communities of Bella Bella and Shearwater, such

as the Goose Group in the western reaches of the

Hakai Provincial Recreation Area.

 

There is good camping on the south end of Campbell

Island as you make you way through Hunter

Channel towards Goose.

Be prepared to paddle 5 miles (8 km) through the

open water in Queens Sound between Campbell

and Goose, the largest by far of the five islands

gathered here.

 

At the north end of Goose Island is a pure white

beach composed largely of pulverized clam shells

that when walked upon with bare feet emit a

squeak not unlike the squeal of a sneaker on a

gymnasium floor.

 

This is truly an enchanted island.

 

Note: There is no freshwater in the Goose Group.

 

Kayakers must be well prepared for poor weather

and rough seas, which may occur at any time of

the year.

Fog can roll in very quickly, necessitating

navigation by compass, and sea conditions can

change from flat calm to 12- to 20-foot (4- to 6-m)

seas within a matter of hours.

 

The west coast of Calvert Island can be hazardous

due to strong surf and should not be approached

without knowledge of the locale, and then only

under ideal conditions.

Winds during the summer are usually westerly or

southwesterly, and on sunny days are often light

or nil in the early morning, pick up midday to late

afternoon, then die down in the evening.

 

They can be extremely strong in the coastal inlets

such as Burke Channel.

 

Weather information can be picked up on VHF

Channel 21B (161.65MHZ).

Hakai Pass in the Hakai Provincial Recreation

Area is world-famous for its salmon fishing,

particularly for chinook (spring), which are

commonly caught on cut-plug herring.

 

The area has a number of commercial floating fish

camps and resorts. Besides salmon, there’s good

fishing here for halibut, lingcod, and rockfish.

 

The midcoast is bald eagle country, and kayakers

will also have the company of the ubiquitous

kingfisher, common loon, cormorant, and

sandpiper.

In the Hakai Luxvbalis Conservancy Area, over 100

species of birds have been identified, ravens and

ospreys among them.

 

Feeding flocks of gulls, auklets, murres, and

murrelets are numerous in the waters of Kildidt

and Queens Sounds.

 

Black oystercatchers, pelagic cormorants,

surf birds, and both black and ruddy turnstones

are also common.

The intertidal waters are home to an amazing

number of marine life forms, and their existence

and activities are controlled by the rhythmic

movements of the tides.

 

Every tide pool has its own distinctive inhabitants:

mollusca, crabs, starfish, anemones, sea urchins,

and many others.

 

Marine mammals to watch for include harbour

seals, sea lions, beavers, river otters, orcas, and

humpback whales.

 

Offshore waters are home to minke, gray, and

humpback whales, as well as porpoises and

dolphins.

 

Terrestrial wildlife includes black-tailed deer, mink,

and wolves, as well as black, Kermode (Spirit Bear),

and (on the mainland) the largest grizzly bears

in the province.

Kayakers wishing to explore this remote wilderness

can access it by sea or by air. BC Ferries’ Queen of

Chilliwack stops at Namu, the closest settlement.

 

Hakai is located across Fitz Hugh Sound from

Namu, a busy shipping route also frequented by

Pacific white-sided dolphins.

 

Fuel and groceries are available at Bella Bella,

Namu, and Dawsons Landing (Rivers Inlet).

 

Private or chartered boats can be arranged from

Vancouver, Port Hardy, and Bella Coola.

 

Chartered and scheduled flights are available

from  Vancouver, Port Hardy, Bella Bella, and

Bella Coola.

 

Hakai Luxvbalis Conservancy Area is located on

the central coast of British Columbia, 6.2 miles

(10 km) west of Namu and approximately

80 miles (130 km) north of Port Hardy on

Vancouver Island.

THIS POST IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY

CHERYL YOUNG, REATOR

SAANICH PENINSULA REALTY

VICTORIA BC.

 

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