Yuquot to Tofino or Winter Harbour to Cape Scott

Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by seadevilsadvocate, Jul 31, 2014.

  1. seadevilsadvocate

    seadevilsadvocate Paddler

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    Just wondering if anyone has done these sections and which one they preferred. Leaning toward the Cape Scott trip with a loop around Lanz and Cox islands.
     
  2. alanh

    alanh New Member

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    Personally I preferred Nootka - Tofino area, though this will include rounding Estavan point, which can be potentially hairy (lots of breakers). Also the area between Brooks and Nootka is very nice. For me Winter Cove was pretty meh, with tons of rec fishing boats buzzing all around, though cape scott is pretty cool.
     
  3. chodups

    chodups Paddler

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    Yuquot to Tofino would be my recommendation. I think that it's a lot prettier. More interesting coastline. Tons of caves. I saw a lot more wildlife on that stretch than on the Winter Harbour to Cape Scott route.
     
  4. seadevilsadvocate

    seadevilsadvocate Paddler

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    Thanks for the replies. I actually went to Cape Scott from San Joseph bay on Aug. 14-21. The original plan was to include a trip to Lanz and Cox islands. However, my partners' gps was acting up so decided to abandon that plan. The fog was very dense and we turned around 2km off the cape.
    I learned a few other more important details about navigating in the fog in areas with many dangerous exposed rocks:
    It is important to plot a course around these rocks and reefs before attempting to navigate these areas in fog. While this may seem obvious, I have always been comfortable paddling close to and around boomers in clear conditions. In dense fog there just is not enough visibility and time to guarantee one won't open up under your boat.
    The sandy bay at the entrance to Hanson lagoon was a spectacular place, complete with a clear fast running stream. I even managed to catch a coho near the entrance.
    For those interested in birds I identified a peregrine falcon perched on a snag near Guise bay.
    Great place to explore and the Yuquot to Tofino sounds like an excellent trip and will be on next years trip list.
     
  5. seadevilsadvocate

    seadevilsadvocate Paddler

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    Almost forgot one more thing:
    The currents in the Scott Channel were forecast to run over two knots at times while we were paddling. I found that the current was not particularly noticeable but the wind was very noticeable. I suspect it is because the current close to shore is not near as strong as in mid channel. Anyone else with comments about this?
     
  6. Cdog

    Cdog Paddler

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    I went around Cape Scott a week ago after 4 days of paddling from Port Hardy and like you I didn't notice much current. We were 3hrs ahead of slack going against a flood when we rounded the Cape but we were pushed around the Cape by large swells (3 to 4m) coming from the Queen Charlotte sound. By the time we've gone around the Cape the swells were half the size. Visibility was clear with full view of the Scott Islands and although that strong northwesterly winds were in the forecast, it was very calm when we got there and it did remain like that for the rest of the day.
    I highly recommend the North Coast, the reef coastline and the beaches are spectacular and it is so remote. Didn't see another kayaker in 8 days and only saw a few hikers camping on the North coast Trail. Kayak surfing sessions at Nissen Bight and Nels Bight were the icing on the cake.
     
  7. VanIslePaddler

    VanIslePaddler Paddler

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    I've paddled the whole stretch from Port Hardy - Tofino.

    Both are incredible. The North Coast is remote and empty. The South has a 'bit' more traffic, but incredible islands.

    The South End (Nootka / Clayoquot) is nice because the diversity of islands gives you a little more lee-way if the weather is marginal. The north end of that stretch can be pretty exposed if the weather is bad.




    Plus I'm biased towards Clayoquot Sound :)
     
  8. seadevilsadvocate

    seadevilsadvocate Paddler

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    Interesting about the current.
    The only kayakers I saw were several groups who planned to paddle out to San Joseph bay and camp. According to the eccentric but friendly owner of the the private campsite at the San Jo river, kayaking is very popular in this area(no doubt due to the San Jo trippers). There was evidence of several kayakers camped a few days before us at the Hanson lagoon site but nothing else.
    It seems to me that remote wilderness tourism is on a real downward slide over the last two decades. Other than the obvious lack of people(there really wasn't many, just more than now) I noted the following:
    There was a long abandoned(20-30 years ,I would say) cabin near Hanson lagoon. There was a long abandoned(no more than twenty years) and well hidden cabin on a remote island in the Kyuquot area. There is obviously more.
    I saw no new wilderness cabins. Maybe there is there another explanation? I doubt government involvement evicted these people because the cabins would have been destroyed.
    What is your opinion on this?
     
  9. seadevilsadvocate

    seadevilsadvocate Paddler

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    Have you noticed much change in the numbers of expedition/touring groups over the years?