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Coastal Journeys

Salt Spring Island: Exploring

jamesbay900Spending the day with the author of Hiking the Gulf Islands of British Columbia, both a fellow hiker and kayaker, renewed my fervour for exploring Salt Spring Island, both on land and by water. Charles took my

friend, Stephanie, and I on a whirlwind car tour, visiting most launch sites for kayaks or small boats, and also visiting remote areas on the island. The third largest Gulf island and second most populous, areas of Salt Spring are still quite remote and certainly intriguing—it was the first time I had seen the Bullman museum at Cusheon Cove. I never knew it existed!

There are three ferry routes to Salt Spring, but from mid-island (VI) the 20-minute, 2.8 nm Crofton ferry ride is the quickest. Paddlers can also cross to Salt Spring from several points. For example, the paddle from Maple Bay to Burgoyne Bay is a reasonable distance.

I usually launch from the bottom of Ontario Place (N48° 51.56’ W123° 27.82’) on Long Harbour for trips to Prevost Island. There’s a fair amount of parking at the end of the road, opposite the house owned by the Victoria Yacht Club. Quebec Dr. and then Ontario is accessed from Long Harbour Road. Exploring Long Harbour is appropriate for novice kayakers. If you are going to explore beyond Long Harbour it is best for novice-to-intermediate paddlers. If you choose these launch sites check the BC ferry schedule and plan your crossing around its arrival or departure. There’s not a long of extra navigational room for a big boat!

May we suggest:

  • Cape Scott

    On July 6, 2015, the “Capers,” Michael Egilson, Gene Gapsis, Debbie Leach, John Minkley, Jennie Sutton and Alan Campbell launched heavily loaded kayaks at a convenient beach access just north of Carrot Park in Port Hardy, BC. Read More
  • Discovery Islands Group Site Assessment

    The weekend of March 7th & 8th Robyn and I joined other members of the BC Marine Trails Network Board of Directors on a site assessment expedition into the Discovery Islands Read More
  • My Galiano Trip

    In mid-August Paul Grey and his friend Lyle decided to launch from Blue Heron Park and to just leave, strong wind warning or not. Read More
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