Humpback whales rubbing up against our boat hull. Coastal wolves loping along a foggy beach. A grizzly bear crossing the river in a morning haze of insects. Enormous fin whales slipping silently through glacier-fed waters. Thousand meter cliffs intersected by multiple cascading waterfalls.
All those experiences are possible when exploring the narrow inlets of the coastal region of British Columbia informally referred to as the Great Bear Rainforest, 600km north of Vancouver. The parade of huge cruise ships that crowd the route from the northwest US to Alaska are not present in the narrow waterways of the GBR. During our week onboard the 138 ft MV Cascadia, which we boarded in Kitimat after flying from Vancouver to Terrace, we saw only a few small boats.
In the sheltered inlets, mornings were a time of exquisite stillness.
Our days typically began with a post-breakfast kayak. The boat provided one or two-person inflatable kayaks. With a small, non-rigid keel and no rudder they were remarkably stable, ideal for beginners in the calm summer conditions of the inland passages.
For those not interested in kayaking, the Cascadia carries two 17 ft aluminum hull tenders for exploring. Their prows open and drop down so when they are brought up to a beach you step off into very shallow water, barely getting your feet wet.
But of course kayaking preserves the stillness and keeps you close to what lies just below the surface.
One thought on “The Great Bear Rainforest: It’s Grrreat!”
Phew! Sounds like an amazing trip Barry. Love the absolutely still water shots.
We’re planning a trip down to Florida this winter to Cape Coral. The Airbnb we’re renting has kayaks, so I’ll get to try them out and see if my back holds up.
We’ve already got reservations for one of our favorite places for next year: a 1 bedroom hacienda on the Rio Grande in Truth or Consequences. Hot tub built into the stone patio overlooking the river, and the water courtesy of the underground hot springs. You just open up the valve and let it flow into the tub. When it fills up, it overflows over the stones back into the river. Ahhh….
Kevin (attached: pic of the tub waiting for us to get in.)
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