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  1. alexsidles

    Long Video With More Than One Lesson

    “Hi, I’m speaking as a certified kayaking guide instructor trainer and volunteer search and rescue team leader coordinator rescue director leader. I’ve compiled a list of observations and opinions, which I know you’ll be grateful I share. There will be be a lot of capital letters and superfluous...
  2. alexsidles

    Best guide books for Calvert Island up to Klemtu

    There are only a handful of guidebooks that cover that region. Here are all of them, in approximate order of usefulness: Kimantas, John. The Wild Coast, Vol. 2: A Kayaking and Recreation Guide for the North and Central BC Coast. ISBN: 978-1552857861 Whitecap Books, 2006 BC Marine Trails...
  3. alexsidles

    Washington Park, Anacortes to San Juan Island County Park Aug 16 - 22, 2021

    Ha, nice! Great trip report, classic WCP! Alex
  4. alexsidles

    Strawberry Island, San Juan Islands, WA 4–6 Sept 2021

    Thanks for the kind words, Phillip. Of course I hope Maya and Leon will take an interest in camping when they get older, but if they don't, that's OK, too. Paul, I did not worry too much about currents. My main objective was to catch currents that were favorable but weak. So I started at the...
  5. alexsidles

    Paddleboarders in trouble in English Bay

    Mick raises good questions. None of the news stories give any evidence that the paddleboarders needed or wanted rescuing. The stories only quote the Vancouver Police Department's press release. Was this really a rescue of seventeen vessels in distress, or was this in reality the world's politest...
  6. alexsidles

    Strawberry Island, San Juan Islands, WA 4–6 Sept 2021

    [Cross-posted on alexsidles.com] Rachel and I began taking Maya kayak-camping in the summer of 2019, when Maya was not quite three years old. All along, I’d been planning to take her to Strawberry Island, my favorite place on Earth. Finally, this year, Maya was old enough that I felt...
  7. alexsidles

    Gray's Canyon, continental slope, WA 21–22 Aug 2021

    Thanks again, everyone, for yet more kind words. I regret that the capsize has become everyone's focus, because the capsize was relatively insignificant compared to the trip to Gray's Canyon. Kayaks capsize in Gray's Harbor on a regular basis (2020 incident, 2019 incident), but kayaks almost...
  8. alexsidles

    Gray's Canyon, continental slope, WA 21–22 Aug 2021

    Thanks for the kind words, everyone! I'll answer folks' question first, then provide an update. Jon: I'm not sure what radio would have been better. I had an Icom M-88 fail on me about ten years ago, and Icom were not good about repairing it. Incidentally, the repaired M-88 failed a year later...
  9. alexsidles

    Gray's Canyon, continental slope, WA 21–22 Aug 2021

    [Cross-posted on alexsidles.com] Some of my happiest memories have been of close wildlife encounters by kayak: visits to puffin colonies, meetings with various species of whales, face-offs with bears. In a kayak, as opposed to a motorized vehicle, I meet the animals on their terms. What happens...
  10. alexsidles

    Sucia Island, San Juan Islands, WA 24–25 July 2021

    Washington State Parks denied James’s application for a fossil collection permit on Sucia Island. Parks confirmed our suspicion that fossil raiding has reached epidemic proportions on Sucia. The agency will not countenance removal of fossils by amateurs, not even for James’s intended purpose of...
  11. alexsidles

    Salmon Bank, San Juan Islands, WA 7 Aug 2021

    [Cross-posted on alexsidles.com] My dad and I made an unsuccessful run to Salmon Bank in search of minke whales. From South Beach on San Juan Island, we paddled out two and a half miles into the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the bank, where we loitered for an hour, listening for whale breaths...
  12. alexsidles

    3 kayakers rescued in Burrard inlet Apr 4 2021

    There’ve been a number of people lately who join WCP to promote their own, monetized kayaking content elsewhere. Find out more about this trend over at alexsidles.com! Sound off in the comments! Alex
  13. alexsidles

    Sucia Island, San Juan Islands, WA 24–25 July 2021

    Thanks for the kind words, David and Max, and welcome to the forum, David. Thanks for posting such a nice trip report from Chuckanut Bay. The water taxi I used was Outer Island Excursions, who have a berth at the Brandt's Landing Marina right next to the public launch at North Beach. Alex
  14. alexsidles

    Sucia Island, San Juan Islands, WA 24–25 July 2021

    [Cross-posted on alexsidles.com] My friend James and his daughter Chelsea joined Maya and me in the latest of our dad-daughter kayak-camping overnights. Sucia Island, a short two-mile crossing from Orcas Island, was the perfect destination for a trip with kids—not too close, not too far, and...
  15. alexsidles

    Expired Flares???

    One thing I don't recommend is shooting your flare in front of your house on the Fourth of July, only to discover that the flare's burn time exceeds its flight time by several seconds. I don't recommend watching the flare be carried by the wind across the street to your neighbor's property...
  16. alexsidles

    COVID and canoeing, sea kayaking continues decline...

    Google data suggests a decline in interest in sea kayaking. Below is Google search trends, which has data going back to 2004: (The periodic spikes are due to increased interest each summer) Below is Google Books NGram Viewer, which has data going back to the 1800s: Google's data is...
  17. alexsidles

    Crossing from the San Juans to Canadian islands?

    In calm conditions, the crossing of Haro Strait is trivial. Here's a trip report from a 2019 overnight crossing from San Juan Island, WA to Discovery Island, BC and back. I've also crossed from Stuart Island to South Pender. On the Canadian side, you have to check in at either a telephone...
  18. alexsidles

    Willapa Spits, Willapa Bay, WA 26–27 June 2021

    [Cross-posted on alexsidles.com] In light of the shocking high temperatures forecast for the weekend, kayaking the inland waters was out. Even staying indoors was a miserable prospect. There was only one hope: an escape to the coast. I’d long been eyeballing an unnamed, sandy island in the...
  19. alexsidles

    Seeking best possible San Juan Islands paddle: weekend of 6/25-27

    I hate to be the "fun police," but I'm not convinced launching a kayak at Gooseberry Point is such a good idea. Gooseberry Point is on the Lummi Indian Reservation. The reservation includes not only the uplands but also the tidelands, from the high-water mark to the low-water mark. See U.S. v...
  20. alexsidles

    Seeking best possible San Juan Islands paddle: weekend of 6/25-27

    Don’t give up so easily. I recommended Strawberry Island specifically to avoid the problem of overbooked campsites and ferries. It’s a great option any month of the year. GCW is also correct that Clark, Matia, and Sucia are reachable from the mainland, and you are likely to find at least one...
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