Hakai Passage

Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by jefffski, Feb 14, 2018.

  1. jefffski

    jefffski Paddler

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    My partner and I will be paddling from Bella Bella across Hakai Passage next summer. Our only stop south of Hakai Passage will be Wolf Beach and then, we will make our way back to Bella Bella. We are concerned about transiting Hakai Passage, as we've read that in good weather, the best times to cross are during flood, not ebb, tides. The problem is that on our scheduled date to cross, the flood tide may end before we get there from Cultus or Serpent, even with an early start.

    Ideally, we would like to camp in Edwards Passage, just before the entrance to Hakai Passage. That would make the timing for the next day's crossing much easier, and we could wait out inclement weather if need be. As we'll be in a canoe, we can land at the edge of small embankments--we don't need a beach--just a flat spot above high tide to pitch a small tent.

    From everything I've read, I cannot find any information about any flat spots to camp between Naulu and the entrance to Hakai Passage. If you've been through there and saw a potential spot, that info would be very welcome.

    Thanks.
     
  2. chodups

    chodups Paddler

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    There is a north facing beach on Edwards Passage / Stirling Island just up a bit from Hakai Passage where Edwards is choked down by a cluster of islets. Can't recall the names of the islets but the site is obvious on Google Earth. I have paddled past it a couple of times but never took a good look at it, however, a group of 12 friends from Juneau camped there in August 2012 before crossing over to Calvert Island. They said that there was a trail from their beach to the "other side of the island" which I took to be that log-choked beach about 100 meters south. They said that someone had spent time building a camp and they thought it was Kayak Bill (it wasn't). It is a spot I have marked in my GPS but have never seen. I suspect that it would serve you.

    You might take a read of this account and see if it helps at all: http://www.tumtum.com/kayak/trips/Hakai_part4.shtml

    Also, there used to be a poster here who went by "Monster". He had a site called he called RippleWake and had a web site by the same name. Do a search for Monster or RippleWake and you will find his posts. He wrote a really fine trip report of canoeing in this area but his web site seems to be defunct now. Maybe someone here knows his name and could provide his current contact info.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
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  3. jefffski

    jefffski Paddler

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    Perfect! Thank you. If you have the coordinates, can you post them or pm me?
     
  4. alexsidles

    alexsidles Paddler

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    Good campsite, Jon. I didn't know that one.

    Jeff, I wouldn't worry too much about the timing of Hakai Passage. I did a run from Pruth Bay to Cultus Sound in 15 knots of southerly wind, and I don't remember conditions being too bad in Hakai Passage. Granted, I started on a flood that day, but I don't think it would have made much difference.

    Alex
     
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  5. chodups

    chodups Paddler

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    I would.


    The campsite I am thinking of is 51 45'16.87"N 128 05'04.88"W. I haven't camped there but 12 friends did when the evening high tide was between 12 - 14 feet. I don't know the exact night they were there hence the tidal range.

    A typical high pressure afternoon is going to bring NW winds between 10-20 kts so swell may be to 2 meter with 1-3 foot windwaves. It is much more comfortable for me to have that sea state running with the current rather than against it.

    Take a look at tides for the period you plan to be there and see how large the exchanges will be. An exchange of 6 feet is probably benign where 12 - 13 feet may require some attention. A lot of water moves through Hakai and it doesn't all run the same direction as I once thought it should. With larger exchanges anticipate some weirdness even if wind and tides align.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018
  6. jefffski

    jefffski Paddler

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    Right where I thought it was. Excellent advice that corresponds to our experience with open passages and regarding Hakai, it matches what I've read.

    We'll be crossing at about high tide in the morning. The exchanges are under 6 feet. Having a camp nearby gives us options and time if the weather doesn't comply.