Looking for kayak launch sites next to BC Ferry Terminals

Wavewander

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Apr 6, 2007
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Hi. I'm wondering if anybody knows which BC ferry terminals have kayak launch beaches within walking distance while towing a kayak on a cart? This is for walk on ferry travel with your kayak. Thanks Jim
 

chodups

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McLoughlin Bay and Shearwater for certain. Klemtu, depending on your tolerance for discomfort and hull scratches.
 

SeanWeijand

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Pender Island: Even though this is marked red on the BC Marine trial website the 3/4 km walk up and around the hill to the marina is definitely doable. The road is steep going down to the marina so going back up is a two rest endeavour but we would still do it. Plus we had a Delta 20 double so it was pretty heavy.

The marina did not charge us to launch and let us use their washroom.
 

cougarmeat

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Bend OR USA
Might say a word about parking facilities at the departing ferry terminal too. I am so ready for Canada to be open again - I know there are some dance steps you can take; maybe this late summer things will be different.
 

kayakwriter

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Pender Island: Even though this is marked red on the BC Marine trial website the 3/4 km walk up and around the hill to the marina is definitely doable. The road is steep going down to the marina so going back up is a two rest endeavour but we would still do it. Plus we had a Delta 20 double so it was pretty heavy.The marina did not charge us to launch and let us use their washroom.
I've done the walk from the Pender Island terminal to that marina. The last part of the hill was so steep I was afraid of my heavily loaded wheeled kayak getting away from me. I wound up running my throwline 'round a sign post and lowering the kayak the way mountaineers rappel loaded packs down slopes.
 

martin_nv

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Feb 10, 2007
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I saw this thread last week while I was looking for information for launching a canoe once off the boat in Langdale. The Marine Trails website looked hopeful but didn't provide any details. The beach north of the ferry terminal looks ideal but is fenced off for some reason. I ended up contacting BC Ferries, and they replied with:
Thank you for reaching out to us with your inquiry.

My latest update is that we aren’t able to let customers launch from our dock for safety and liability concerns. As for beach access, I recommend either talking to the Chief Steward onboard the vessel, or a Terminal Manager at Langdale to inquire about the potential to launch from the beach.

If you have any further questions, please contact our Customer Service Centre toll free at 1-888-223-3779 and press “0” to speak with a representative who will be happy to assist you. We are available between 7:00 am and 10:00 pm weekdays and 7:00 am to 7:00 pm on weekends.
 
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kayakwriter

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I saw this thread last week while I was looking for information for launching a canoe once off the boat in Langdale. The Marine Trails website looked hopeful but didn't provide any details. The beach north of the ferry terminal looks ideal but is fenced off for some reason. I ended up contacting BC Ferries, and they replied with: SNIP
It's been at least 15 years since I did a wheel-on with my kayak from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale. But I do remember I had a several hundred meter walk n' wheel, out of the terminal, hanging a left (west), following the Marine Drive lower road for a bit and then left again (South). I believe I came out and launched roughly where Hopkins Landing is shown in this google earth screen grab.
Screenshot 2022-03-20 162845 langdale terminal.jpg
 

mick_allen

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The Marine Trails website looked hopeful but didn't provide any details. The beach north of the ferry terminal looks ideal but is fenced off for some reason.
I just re-looked and the BCMTNA website gives a seemingly accurate description of the two potential launches. But fences and obstructions change so I can't say for sure what the status is right now. . . but what it was:

So the map. The beach path through the fence is shown just near the start of the parking lot and the awkward dock launch is shown where one immediately gets off the ferry:
Langdale-plan.jpg


Now the BCMT website states that deliberately placed barriers and fencing prevent dock launches . . . however if the situation hasn't changed, I think a launch could be possible with a kayak slalomed thru the barriers and carried empty thru the [ridiculous] dock gating sideways. but YMMV. If the situation has changed, then nfg I guess. But here's what I think it is:

The dock entry from Google E:
Dock-02a.jpg


the last half of the walk with barriers to be slalomed:
Dock-02b.jpg


the ridiculous right angled, vestibuled gateway to the dock that I'm sure a sideways kayak can be slid thru:
Dock-02c.jpg


the hours of access thru this gate:
Dock-02d.jpg


The usual dock/float itself. lf no boats, a great staging point:
Dock-02e.jpg


**

Ok, the simplest is the beach thru the fence, IF the opening has not been refenced . . . it has/had been open for some time, but things can change. . . . and shhhh don't make waves on this.
Anyway, at the bottom of the ferry walk - ignore the 'do not enter' sign - it's for the other lessers :
Beach-01a.jpg


and just beyond that last sign just ahead, wheel thru the gap in the concrete barriers:
Beach-01b.jpg



There just happened to be an opening thru the fence:
Beach-01c.jpg

with a well worn little path all the way to the beach!! Now this path even had signage and there even were maintenance bins in evidence. What the situation is now, not sure. Last time driving past, I didn't check - like an idiot.

The path:
Beach-01d.jpg


and the wide 400m wide, low slope, sand/gravel, log topped beach beyond:
Beach-01e.jpg


hmmmmmm, I wonder if one could set up a little hidden base camp somewhere along there. Naw, who would arrive late at night and do that???
 

Jon Wescott

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May 25, 2011
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I've landed on the above-mentioned dock at the Langdale ferry terminal a few times, but I've shouldered my boat to carry it up to the ferry. I don't know how well it would go towing it, though. I have to say, the ferry workers were pretty supportive. One time I was trying to catch the 6:20 AM (I believe it was at this time, but whatever the first ferry departure is) and the gate to these docks were locked. I was too far away to get anyone's attention, but a ferry worker saw me and radio'ed for someone to come down and unlock it. I made the ferry : )
 

martin_nv

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Feb 10, 2007
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North Vancouver
Thanks for those photos Mick! The fence route seems to be the way to go. I did not think of checking the interactive map on the BCMT site, looks like quite a bit of info there as well.
 

justine

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Apr 20, 2022
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vancouver island
you can launch from the ferry terminal itself in Bella Bella and Klemtu. It's awkward at Klemtu, you have to carry your kayak onto a rocky beach but it's very close.
 

mick_allen

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May 15, 2005
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Here's some Klemtu and Bella Bella shots to back up justine's info:

Klemtu plan view:
00-KlemtuPlanb.jpg


Coming in from Ferry:
00-KlemtuTerm1b.JPG


after landing, from parking area:
00-KlemtuTerm2b.jpg


The launch area [ from a thread by stagger on site - https://www.westcoastpaddler.com/co...central-coast-sept-2-14-2018.8433/#post-90974 ]: it's a great shot, but a little deceivingly benign looking.
00-KlemtuTerm3b.jpg


***

and Bella Bella - McLoughlin Bay

Planview:
00-BellaBella-Mcloughlin-planb.jpg


arrival from ferry [ from tripadvisor - https://www.tripadvisor.com/Locatio..._Hardy_Vancouver_Island_British_Columbia.html ]:
01-BellaBella-Mcloughlin-arrivalb.jpg


Launch area:
02-BellaBella-Mcloughlin-launchb.jpg
 
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chodups

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Nov 2, 2005
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Here are a few more photos of the Klemtu launch. What isn't shown is the slippery slope into a small creek bed that you have to negotiate at the end of the concrete wall in order to access the "beach". The rip rap that you launch from is hard on gel coat and the footing is not good. Though the ferry and the tides run on predictable schedules they don't always coordinate for decent launches. You want to load your boat on a rising tide so that you can float away with minimal hull damage. You also want to have help.

I've used that launch twice. Once with plenty of help and another time solo. Carrying a boat down the slippery slope alone, into the stream bed and over/under (your choice) that giant round doo-dah, and over the rocks to your assigned sharp, slick, blood-thirsty, hungry rip rap is character-building experience.

Images show slippery slope creek bed and kayaks getting ready to launch.
026.JPG
027-001.JPG
028.JPG


IMG_2727.JPG
 

chodups

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Nov 2, 2005
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At Prince Rupert the distance from stepping on or off of the Northern Expedition to the Fairview Floats is about 650 meters. I think that Fairview Floats has a different name now and I assume that kayak comings and goings are still permitted. Launching and landing is on floating docks. A ramp extends down from the parking lot above. In the past water has been available from a spigot outside of the office.

PR Ferry.jpg




488.JPG

The launch, the Ramp and the Tres Hombres

489.JPG

Distance from Fairview Floats to the Northern Expedition
 

Oberonshaw870

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Aug 5, 2022
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U.S
Hello, buddies. I've been watching for a long, but I need to decide what to buy. I've enjoyed paddling a Trak Kayak in metro Vancouver for the past several years, but I don't think this is the ideal kind of boat to use to travel up the Sunshine Coast, down to the Puget Sound or Gulf Islands, or particularly the Pacific coast of Vancouver Island.
Here are several boats I've seen in secondhand or gear-swap listings around metro Vancouver, Seattle, or Portland:
Sleipner Epic 18X Sport Performance Stellar S18 Touring/Expedition by Norse Kayaks
Are there any people out there that have strong feelings about these kayaks? If so, what are they?
 
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