Our favourite San Juan Island overnight sea kayak trip takes us through prime orca whale habitat to picturesque Stuart Island - accessible only by boat. Paddle the international waters of the migrating salmon with views of the Canadian Gulf Islands and the Olympic and Cascade Mountain Ranges. Fuel your extensive exploration with gourmet, 3-course meals, prepared by your tour guide in a dutch oven around the campfire.
Camping is part of this experience, more info is provided upon booking but you will be camping in nature surrounded by the inspiring landscape, accompanied by expert guides.
Your Outdoor Odysseys guide(s) will meet you in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. Our van will take the group, which generally averages from 6-8 participants (maximum of 12), to our launch site on the west side of San Juan Island. After packing all camping and personal gear into the kayaks, we'll have a thorough orientation covering the fitting of the boat, paddling technique, safety and boat handling. We won't get on the water until everybody feels comfortable about paddling. We’ll paddle north, kayaking along the picturesque Haro Strait, with views of the Canadian Gulf Islands to the west. We'll keep a sharp eye out for whales and other wildlife chasing the Fraser River bound salmon. After paddling for a couple of hours along the rocky, tidally rich coastlines of San Juan and Henry Islands, we'll stop for a long lunch prepared by your guide and chef. After refuelling, we’ll cross the Spieden Channel to Stuart Island.
Our destination for the night is Reid Harbor on Stuart Island, which is only accessible by private boat. The campsites are nestled in a forest of red-barked madronas, cedar and Douglas fir trees. After camp is set up, you can relax while your guide prepares a three-course dinner. Life doesn't get much better than sitting at a scenic, secluded waterfront campsite, sipping a glass of wine and eating gourmet appetizers, after a hearty day of paddling.
On our second day we'll do "le grand" circumnavigation around Stuart Island, passing by numerous uninhabited islands in the Boundary Pass and John’s Pass and staying in prime whale watching habitat. We'll kayak beneath the cliffs of the Stuart Island fog and light station and look out to Mount Baker all while sharing the coastline with resting harbor seals and nesting bald eagles. Match your exploration on water, with a hike in the afternoon to the Stuart Island one-room schoolhouse and light station or relax at camp while your guide prepares another gourmet meal. Finish your evening by the campfire and under the light of the stars, or see the “stars in the water” on a guided bioluminescence kayak tour.
The adventure is far from over on the last day. Enjoy a hearty breakfast before packing up camp and revisiting the waters of the Speiden Channel and Haro Strait, maximizing our time in prime whale territory and increasing our chances of seeing the J, K, and L pods of the endangered orca population. We’ll dine on one last artfully prepared lunch before completing our paddle and landing back on the west side of San Juan Island. We’ll load our gear and our paddlers and have you back to Friday Harbor between 3-4 PM to meet your Washington State ferry or continue your time on the islands.