Skip to main content
Add Me To Your Mailing List
Washington Kayak Club
Fun and safe kayaking through trips, education, skill development, and conservation
HomeTrip Reports

 TRIP REPORT

WW Helper Training Day   By Rick Schoen

Sunday January 22 was the training day this year for the WW class in March.  We take folks from previous classes and others interested to work with them on dealing with students and simple retrieval and rescue skills.

Read More
 
 Advanced Wilderness Camping Class    
By Bill Porter

The group of seven students and three experienced instructors launched at Washington Park at 11:30 am on Thursday June 23rd with the goal of paddling across Rosario Strait to our first nights planned camp site located at Spencer Spit on Lopez Island. The strong currents and rips around Belle Rock Light and Bird Rocks challenged our plans. We had three swimmers, one lost Werner paddle and some new found rescue experiences for the group.

Team Petty Adventure: British Columbia     
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

Captain Bill Petty took the Team (Doug, Larry, Lora, and me) to his favorite destination, British Columbia. 

On August 4, Bill, Larry, and I hit the road and boated the Class 3 section of the Coquihalla. I had run it with more water in the spring of last year, but it felt much steeper this time, as all features were more exposed.

Owyhee River: Rome to Birch Creek     
By Mike Grijalva

I have tried for years to get on this river section, and always it fell thru, usually because the water level was wrong. The past two years it barely ran in the hundreds for the Spring season. This year saw snow pack in the mountains that provide the water, and we had a week of levels above 1200cfs.

 Team Petty: St Joe  
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

For the Memorial Day weekend, Captain Bill Petty led the Team to Idaho’s panhandle near Avery to run the St. Joe and nearby rivers. Bill, Doug, Ken and I got there on Thursday, May 26 and found a free campsite on the river, five miles above the Tin Can Campground.

 
Halloween
Paddle
&
Poker Party
 
By Shanna Gachen
 
Annual Halloween Paddle on the beautiful Lower Green River Gorge (class III), what a fun day to celebrate!
 
Nisqually River - 7 River Challenge   
By Shanna Gachen

The Nisqually River is fed from the slopes of the Nisqually Glacier on Mt Rainier. The river is regulated by the two dams upstream, the first being the Alder dam and the lower one being the La Grande dam, however, sometimes when there's too much water or not enough, the dams can control the flow allowing boating most of the year throughout this river reach.
 
 
Down River Play Clinic     
By Paul Brower
 
There are times I don’t like being a beginner at a sport and this was one of those times. The first time I remember feeling this way was when my kids talked me into giving up skiing and taking up snowboarding. Going back to falling when I got off the chair lift and having to stay on the bunny slopes is hard when you yearn to be up on the diamond runs on your skis.
 
Possession Sound Whale Hunt (March 19)   
By David Ortland
On March 19, the Vernal Equinox this year, I led my annual whale hunting trip out of Mukilteo On this occasion the famous grey whale Patch hunted us instead. Fifteen paddlers set out on a lovely calm day from the new park next to the Boeing pier in Mukilteo. I like to take a lot of paddlers because some are needed for whale bait. It works.
 
SJ7 - Cypress Island Circumnavigation (March 18)   
By Bill Porter
 
We launch at 8:05 am on a beautiful 37degree morning under bright sunny skies from Young's Park on the north end of Guemes Island. Headed west then south paddling down Bellingham Channel towards the south end of Cypress Island.
 
 
 Outdoor Adventures First Aid/CPR Training for Kayakers    
By Tomas Tabisola
 
If you've never been to Index, a little town on the Skykomish River, you'll have to visit it next time you want or need to take a short road trip, put in for a WW adventure, go fishing for salmon and/or steelhead, spend the night in a haunted hotel, or just have lunch at a rustic cafe on the river run by Bill and Karen Corson. 
 
 Team Petty Adventure - Lower Dosewallips    
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

On Friday, February 12, 2016, Captain Bill Petty, Pete, Doug, and I headed to the Dosewallips. Our original plan of running the Hamma Hamma was postponed due to the high water combined with our unfamiliarity with the river. Because three of us had just run the Lower Dosewallips on last New Year’s Eve, we thought it wouldn’t be too bad. A Port Angeles boater Colin joined us at the take-out, Dosewallips State Park.
 
 River Helper Training Day  
By Shanna Gachen
 
What a fun day at the pool, followed by a session on the Snoqualmie River Powerhouse section. The goal for the day was to train the helpers who have volunteered to assist with the 2016 WKC Whitewater Kayaking Course. It also gave the instructors the opportunity to refresh our memories and try out new teaching techniques. 
 
 
Team Petty Adventure - New Year's OP   
By Renee Paradis
I had the best time bringing in the New Year in 2016 – I joined Bill Petty, Kanako, and crew for a class II/II+ adventure weekend on the north Olympic Peninsula. A perfect level of difficulty for me, since I haven’t really kayaked in over two years.
 
 Nisqually River 7RC
(April 23)
 
By Shanna Gachen 
 
With its origin on the slopes of Mt Rainier, the river runs along the Fort Lewis Military Reservation and mature forests border both sides of the river. 
 
 
 
Team Petty Adventure
Lower Matheny
(Nov 29) 
 
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

Captain Bill Petty led the team to the Southern Olympic Peninsula on his annual Thanksgiving weekend paddle. After running the Humptulips Narrows on Friday and the Middle Matheny Creek on Saturday, we ran the Lower Matheny Creek on Sunday, November 29, 2015.
 
 
Matheny Creek Weekend
(Nov 21 - 22)
 
By Shanna Gachen

Whitewater Kayaking in the Olympic Peninsual at it's best! Matheny Creek bound for some adventurous kayakers ready to experience some amazing scenery and fun whitewater.
 
 
Team Petty Adventure: Oregon
(Oct 29 - Nov 2)
 
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

Water-deprived in this area, Captain Bill Petty took the Team (Doug, Larry, Andy, and me) to Oregon in search of runnable rivers. Ironically, while we were away from October 29 to November 2, Western Washington had a huge amount of rain, and all rivers flooded. We, on the other hand, had mostly good weather, except raining when sleeping or driving.
 
SF Calawah Adventure
(Nov 8)
   
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

On Sunday, November 8, Fearless Leader Jon Almquist took four courageous kayakers to the South Fork of the Calawah. As the trip description claimed this run as “rarely-seen class III+ gem in Olympic National Park"...
 
First Ever River Run: South Fork of the Snoqualmie (Nov 7)    
By Matt Haverly
 
I have always wanted to kayak all my life, but never knew people who did it and never had
access to the gear or instruction. I have always loved water sports and adventure sports of
many kinds...
 
Wynoochee Humptulips Weekend
(Oct 10 - 11) 
 
By Jon Almquist
 
On Oct 10-11, a lucky number of us (13) enjoyed a fantastic weekend of paddling and camping on the southern Olympic Peninsula. With the Wynoochee gorge take-out access road gated by Green Diamond Resource Co., we were a little worried that our normal early-fall / low water favorite – the Wynoochee Gorge – wasn’t an option with the dry conditions we were experiencing.
 
 
River Helper Training Day  
 
By Shanna Gachen
 
What a fun day at the pool, followed by a session on the Snoqualmie River Powerhouse section. The goal for the day was to train the helpers who have volunteered to assist with the 2016 WKC Whitewater Kayaking Course. It also gave the instructors the opportunity to refresh our memories and try out new teaching techniques.
 
           
Team Petty Adventure: Bridge River, BC
(Sept 29) 
 
By Kanako Iwata-Eng
 
       
Stats: Tuesday, September 29, 2015, Class III+ - IV (V), Medium level flow, 16.5 miles, 9 hours from put-in to take-out, 5 kayakers, 6 swims, 1 broken paddle followed by a 30-minute struggle to assemble a 4-piece paddle, numerous scouting, a few portages including one over a high cliff, and an extremely difficult takeout climbing out the 100 feet sandy cliff.
         
Lummi Island Trip and Sterling Kayak Demo   
By David Ortland
 
On May 16th 16 WKC paddlers set paddle around Lummi Island. For a special treat, Sterling Donaldson dropped off Five of his beautiful kayaks for us to try out that day. Many paddlers swapped boats to give multiple test drives. Such a long paddle is the perfect way to determine if a boat is right for you.
 
 
Adjusting River Running to Climate Change    
By Mike Grijalva

My favorite run in our area, of all the choices we have within a reasonable radius, is the lower Green River gorge. I have run it at many levels, from over 2k, down into the few hundreds. Some people like it large, maybe over 2k, but in the future we may not see levels like that very often. 
 
Matheny Creek Weekend Matheny 
By Shanna Gachen
 
Whitewater Kayaking in the Olympic Peninsual at it's best!  Matheny Creek Bound..
 
 
 
Humptulips Weekend Humptulips 
By Jon Almquist
 
Mother Nature came through with some good rains which brought the Humptulips River into fine form… We had Water!!
 
 
 
 
Swiftwater Rescue with Casey Garland     
By Mike Grijalva

Fourteen paddlers attended the first Swiftwater Course of the season, taught by Casey Garland. The in-the-river portion of the class was taught at the Cedar River at Landsburg, and we spent lots of time in the water.
 
 2015 WW Basic Course    
By Rick Schoen

The Whitewater Basic Class was a great success again this year from 2/28 thru 3/21. Lots of learning, experience, and growth seemed to occur for all – students, instructors, and helpers alike.
 
Skookumchuck Wave
BC, Canada
 
By Shanna Gachen
 
Ebb & Flow?! What is this jibber jabber?  WELL, I now know more about the sea than I should ever have to know as a whitewater kayaker… ha! 
 
A crew of whitewater boaters ventured north to Canada to visit the infamous Skookumchuck Rapids, to find out what all the hoopla was about. The skookumchuck Narrows is located on the Sunshine Coast of B.C. and takes about 6 hours.. 
 
 
White Salmon Whitewater Weekend
 
By Shanna Gachen & Kanako Iwata-Eng
 
A WKC fun-filled weekend on the White Salmon with a great crew! Thanks Ken Stallman for leading the annual club trip to Southwestern Washington.  We usually try to hit the White..
 
 
Easter BC WW Trip   
 
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

Led by Bill Petty, Doug Knapp, Jennie Goldberg, Andy Meyers, Chris Knorr and I paddled Statlu Creek (Class 3+) and Chehilis River (Class 3+) on Saturday and Coquihalla River (Class 3) on Sunday.
 
Larch Madness at Diablo Lake   
By LaVerne Woods
  
Nine paddlers met at Colonial Creek Campground on the morning of October 18, 2014 as the mist was lifting off of Thunder Arm in the North Cascades. We paddled north to Diablo Lake in smooth water and headed east up the channel to visit Horsetail Falls, past vine and bigleaf maples in their autumn colors. 
 
 
Guemes Island Circumnavigation   
By David Ortland

Seven WKC paddlers spent a beautiful day circumnavigating Guemes Island on Feb 22. The goal of the trip was to learn how to navigate San Jaun currents. This was a day with a southward strong ebb of 3.5 knots through Bellingham Channel, producing moderate eddies and rips to play around in. 
  
 
Discovery Bay: Winter Paddle
 
By Brenna McVety

After spending some time recently in Sequim and Port Townsend, I realized I had never paddled Discovery Bay. This is a beautiful, protected body of water with few public places to launch boats - which means no boat traffic. It is a perfect spot for a winter paddle. 
 
 
Winter Break Paddle: Orcas Island   
 
By Bill Porter
 
Very convenient to rent cabins at West Beach Resort which was our salt water launch spot for Saturday's trip along the west side of Orcas Island. Launching at 9:30 we paddled up to and around Pt. Doughty on our journey to Orcas Island International Airport. Magnificent views of Patos, Sucia, Matia and Clark islands and in the distance the Canadian islands with their snow peaked mountains. 
 
Improving Combat Rolls   
By Kanako Iwata-Eng

I am not a certified kayak instructor. As a graduate of the WKC Beginner Class in 2012, I don’t have a lot of experience, either. My paddle strokes, boat control, and river reading skills need improvement, and I flip a lot. But I have one skill that often wows my fellow boaters – my combat rolls.
  
 
God's Pocket   
By Dave Ortland
Five paddle pals and I explored the north end of Vancouver Island for seven days last August. We traveled from Port Hardy to Cape Sutil and back while circumnavigating Nigei Island. This area is becoming a very popular place to paddle, and for good reason. It is easily accessible, the scenery is magnificent, and the paddling is fairly protected from the large swell of the outer coast. One must be prepared for windy and rainy conditions. Fortunately we did not encounter much wind or rain. Hopefully this trip report will help you plan your own excursion.

 
 
Lake Crescent: Winter Paddle   
By Brenna McVety

Lake Crescent is a deep, glacially created lake known for its brilliant blue, clear water. It is located in the Olympic National Park, approximately 17 miles west of Port Angeles. It is about a 2 1/2 to 3 hour drive from Seattle, including a scenic ride on the Bainbridge ferry. This is a great winter paddle to consider, when conditions at the coast become too rough.
 
 
 Hood Canal Salmon Bird Watching Paddle
 
By Linda Cooley
 
The winter birds have returned, the salmon have begun their migration upstream, and power boats are tethered and dry-docked for the winter. Grab your camera and binoculars and join us on the quieter side of the Salish Sea to enjoy nature’s bounty.

 
Anything But Shopping    
By Bill Porter

Had a blast albeit a chilly blast on today's 'Anything but Shopping' paddle with great friends Julia, Tina, Zee, Rob, Mike, Mark and Jon. We had no trouble finding a parking place, there were no long lines in fact we had the whole beach to ourselves. Yes, it was a bit breezy, yes it rained hard the whole 3+ hours we where on the water, yes the hard rain did include occasional snow flakes. Yes, Mukilteo Mike, the resident sea lion and his harbor seal friends did seem to question our sanity but all had a great time................and we are thawed out now !
 
LaPush: 7 Day Coastal Paddle 
 
 
 
By Bill Porter

Paddled with a group of WKC (Washington Kayak Club) friends launching at the Quileute River Marina in La Push, WA. We paddled to Mosquito Cove some 11 miles to the south, which was our intended campsite. Fog... lots of sea fog in the mornings and fairly brisk winds in the 15-25k range in the afternoons for most of this trip. Highlight was loads of warm sunshine each and every day.
 
 
San Juan River Trip 
 
By Mike Grijalva

A group of river folks that ran the Main Salmon last year together, had so much fun, that we did another river this year. 9 teens and 8 adults headed to the San Juan River in S. Utah about the middle of August.
 

 Lake Chelan Shakedown 
 

 
 
By Brenna McVety 
 
Lake Chelan has long been on my list of kayaking adventures. This summer, I finally had the time and weather window to to make that trip happen. I checked in with Dave Ortland, WKC President, shortly before departing. I let him know I was heading to Lake Chelan. I would load my kayak onto the ferry and ride to Stekehin, then paddle 50 miles back to Chelan. Simple lake with lots of campsites. No big deal, right? He indicated there was a very good chance I would not make it...
  
Paddling Panama's Pacific Coast: Gulf of Chiriqui 
 
 
By Colin Reedy
 
Mandatory non-disclosure agreement.
This article reveals little known exotic locations for epic kayaking yet to be developed or even much populated. By reading this information you promise to do your utmost to maintain their confidentiality... and get there someday soon. That being said, check this out.
 
WKC Luau   
 
By Dave Ortland

Two weeks ago on Sept 20 we had an epic event at Hobuck Beach in Neah Bay - the first club Luau and Beach party. Tomas Tabisola prepared an amazing Hawaiian feast including a roast pig. Ineze Arlene and Hilary Barnes helped prepare the side dishes for Tomas' menu. We declare them to be Knights of the WKC for their heroic efforts! At least 40 club members and guests attended and contributed potluck to the feast, music, and camaraderie.
 
Cypress Island Surf and Turf  
 
By Peter Babler
 
An October 3 Sea Kayaking trip around Cypress Island, with stops at Pelican Beach and a hike on the Eagle Cliff Trail to the summit lookout.
 
My First Annual Lumpy Waters Trip   
By Tomas Tabisola
 
I first heard about Lumpy Waters last year when I won a certificate for Basic Skills Sea Kayak Class for Two at a Washington Waters Trail Association Auction Dinner. In googling Alder Creek to get its phone number, I saw a video and photos of the Fifth Annual Lumpy Waters Symposium on its website and it looked like everyone was having a great time. I knew immediately I wanted to be part of it.
 
Cedar River Float  
 
By Mike Grijalva
 
Starting our float at the park above Hwy 169 and under the bike trail(old railroad bridge), we floated about a mile to this obstruction. A high bank on river left gave way when the clay soil became supersaturated with water, and all the earth and trees came down and across the river. This section has been closed to the public since that time, but Sgt. Knauss of the King Co. Marine Division gave our WKC trip permission to go down through this area. We floated under the first trees, but had to get out and walk around trees that span the river just below here.
 
Nisqually River Delta Paddle  
By Tomas Tabisola
 
We launched on an ebbing tide and were able to paddle only about a half mile upstream on McAllister Creek before it became too shallow to paddle anymore. We saw our first bald eagle as it flew across the creek into the trees. It looked like it was carrying nesting material. 

Read More
Gulf Islands  
By Paul Chance

Islands, warm air and water, sit-down restaurant half way through, lots of learning experiences - Steve Harris's Gulf Island trip was about as great as it gets. The route began at the north end of Salt Spring Island with a paddle to Chivers Point on Wallace Island. It continued through Porlier Pass to Sandstone Campground at Dionisio Point Park; then on to Blackberry Point and Pirate's Cove. We also took a day trip through Gabriola Pass to Silva Bay for a touch of "civilization" before heading back home.
 
Weekend in Willapa Bay
 
By Dave Ortland
 
A couple years ago I visited Willapa Bay for the first time and was enchanted by its beauty.  I kept a promise to myself to return with kayaks this April 11.  The goal of the trip was to scout out kayak destinations and to try and observe birds during the spring migration.  Three WKC paddlers joined me on a perfect weekend for the exploration. The float plan included a paddle up Smith Creek, a circumnavigation of Long Island, and a crossing of Willapa Bay to Leadbetter Point. 

San Juan Island Exploration and Whale Hunt  
By Dave Ortland
 
I’ll cut right to the chase:  On Saturday we were surrounded by orcas.  In addition, this trip was about islands, currents, wildlife, tide pools, flowers, beaches, peaceful solitude, and spam.  Paddle pals along:  Linday, Jonny, Judy &Scott (welcome, new members!), Marty.
 
Canyon Creek Whitewater Trip Report  
By Kanako Iwata-Eng
 
On the rainy Sunday 5/4, Bill Petty, Doug Knapp, Chris Knorr and I went to run the Canyon Creek, a SF Stillaguamish tributary. The commonly known put-in for the 4-mile Class 2 section is next to the Masonic Park, but Bill took us to his put-in he made and maintains the path to. This adds another 4 miles and some Class 3-ish rapids. Just needed to hike a little.
 
LaPush: 3 Day Trip   
By Jay Reeves
 

It was a dark and stormy night....let's try that again.....

Actually, it was a bright and beautiful day in La Push with the marine forecast over the Labor Day weekend for the Washington coast of sunny, highs in the upper 60's, lows in the lower 50's, light to no wind, west swell 2 foot @ 16 seconds for Saturday and Sunday, changing Monday to west to southwest 5 foot @ 8 seconds.

 
     
     
     


WKC Calendar

  
Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events