The Skookumchuck Narrows is a place that I’ve wanted to visit ever since I first started kayaking. I’ve heard a million stories and seen hours of footage from the epic wave, but in spite of the large expectations I had built up, Skook lived up to and surpassed all of them. Spencer and I spent a total of 7 days at the wave, and experienced tides from 14 to 17.2 knots.
Click here to watch the Skook Video from Effort.tv
Ferry out to the Sechelt Peninsula.
The scene at Skook… Trip Jennings shoots while Karl Moser paddles.
One of the things that sets Skook apart from other big wave playspots is how dynamic and alive it is. The plankton-rich water that the flood tide brings in feeds starfish, anemones, kelp beds, and all sorts of other wildlife at the wave, and it’s pretty incredible to be surfing a big green wave and see the kelp waving on the rock shelf below you.
The wave itself is obviously very dynamic as well, and is at its best right before or right after it greens out on both sides of max flood. At these levels there is a small foam pile at the top, and it’s probably one of the best spots in the world for working out new tricks.
Spence works on his clean blunt.
Me enjoying the Flair 57.
I would love to have this as my home wave, and it was super fun to hang out with some of the locals who are fortunate enough to paddle here every time it comes in, especially Dru Lyall and Emily Lussin.
Dru and Emily cold-kickin it.
These guys are fellow members of Team Riot, former Canadian Team Members, and are two super cool people and very good kayakers. It was awesome hanging out with them.
Dru can throw some nasty clean blunts.
During max flood the wave greens out and playboats can’t catch it, but Dru was nice enough to let me use his Riot Boogie surf boat for a while during a big tide. After a number of vain attempts to catch the wave, I dropped in, paddled my ass off, and finally skipped down the face of that monster! “Walking on the Moon” by The Police came on my H2o Audio, and I had a ten minute, zen soul-surf out there. I really can’t describe how much fun it was, but I couldn’t stop laughing at what I was doing and yelling at the top of my lungs! It was a total spiritual moment and that single surf probably validated my whole trip out there, as well as reminding me how much I love what we kayakers are fortunate enough to be able to do.
So in conclusion, Skook is a truly special place to visit, and I’m sure I will be back. Unfortunately it looks as though the whole Skookumchuck area is under a serious threat from a local logging company. During our time there, we spoke to a number of locals who were working on petitions to protect their drinking water, and the natural aesthetic beauty of this part of the Sechelt Peninsula. Please help save this incredible paddling resource by writing an email before the proposed deadline, detailed below:
An Open Letter to all White Water Kayakers
The village of Egmont, BC, is asking for the help of all kayakers who have ridden (or aspire to ride) the waves of the Skookumchuck Rapids. We have learned that a logging company has acquired the logging license in this area. The logging plans involve three huge clear cuts on the local watershed with one that extends right to the Skookumchuck Trail within the Provincial Park. Also, there is a planned cutblock that would mow down the trees along Egmont Road from Highway 101 to North Lake; a huge cutblock off of Maple Road; and another cutblock on the watershed at the north end of Ruby Lake. As well, the company plans to log Sechelt Nation Reserve lands just inside the Sechelt Inlet just past the rapids.
The residents of Egmont asked if the logging company would take a sustainable logging approach but they said no and so the area's residents have said no to the logging company. We now ask for your support to keep the logging out of this area. We ask that you email the forestry rep before a June 6th deadline at
and copy that email to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please address your email to:
Cam Forrester, R.P.F., Consulting Forester
6231 Sunshine Coast Highway, Sechelt, BC V0N 3A7
Tel: 604-885-7142, Fax: 604-885-7112
We will be posting all information about this proposed logging and our efforts to stop it on our blog at
www.saveourwatershed.com. We look forward to your support.
Friends of Egmont
Click here to watch the Skook Video from Effort.tv including information regarding the logging.
I’d like to thank Aquabound Paddles and Craig Langford for hooking it up on this trip! See you on the rivers of Colorado, California or Oregon in the near future.