Kayaking Broughton Archipelago

The Broughton Archipelago is BC’s largest provincial marine park named in honour of William Robert Broughton, who captained the second ship of the Vancouver Expedition in 1792. It is a beautiful display of islands and islets dotted between northern Vancouver Island and British Columbia’s mainland coast near the mouth of Knight Inlet. In many parts you will see the snow-capped mountains of BC’s mainland in the background. Kayakers come from all over the world to experience the changing weather, wild nature and wildlife that is here.

Large schools of Pacific white-sided dolphins pass through these waters. Some of the 200 Northern resident Orca Whales frequent these waters feeding on salmon and herring. You will likely see Black Bears and Black-tailed deer and you will have a chance at seeing a cougar which so many people talk about. Close up encounters are very likely for those going on trips ranging from 5-7 days.

Launching Sites:

Port McNeil (by taxi), Telegraph Cove, Alert Bay, and Mitchell Bay (on Malcolm Island)

A few Camping Spots:

  • Echo Bay: a Provincial Marine Park with 30 tent sites.
  • Burwood Islands: northern group has eight tent sites.
  • Flower Island: about 5 spots
  • Mound Island: for kayakers and yachters
  • White Cliff Islets (largest one). Note there is little cover here.
  • Owl Island: there is a pit toilet here and a few tent spots

Safety Tips:

  • Fog, choppy water and large ships are common here.
  • Strong currents and rip tides happen in a few areas here, so make sure you have your itinerary planned out with a local kayaker.
  • The flood tide flows down island toward Campbell River and the ebb tide flows up traveling north.
  • This trip is for experienced kayakers or kayakers with guides.
  • Rain is a strong possibility so make sure you have the right wet gear

Possible Wildlife:

Orca Whales, Humpback Whales, Minke Whales, Pacific White-sided dolphins, Porpoise, Stellar Sea lions, Sea otters, River otters,  mink, Black bears, Grizzly Bears (on mainland), cougars, Bald eagles, Blue herons, many other types of sea birds.