Back to Canoe
Start all your paddling adventures with this introductory course. Whether you are a first-time paddler or with some prior experience, discover the essential skills, manoeuvres and knowledge to safely paddle a tandem (two-person) canoe, either from the bow (front) or stern (back).
• Canoes, paddles, PFDs and other gear
• Paddling positions and boat trim
• Launching and landing
• Forward, stopping and reverse paddling
• Basic turns while paddling forward
• Spins and sideslip manoeuvres
• Storing and waterproofing gear
• Canoeing safety guidelines and equipment
• Handling waves and wind
• Capsizes and rescues (Wet/Dry suit recommended)
Our certified instructors deliver the Recreational Canoeing Association of British Columbia’s (RCABC) Basic Tandem course in a full-day session normally held on the Gorge waterway near the VCKC clubhouse.
All canoeing gear can be provided, however you are encouraged to bring your own equipment if you have it.
You must be a club member to take a course, you will not be able to register until you have logged into the website.
Please register online now to secure your spot. You can delay paying until one week before the course date; a payment reminder email will be sent at that time.
Course-specific details will be sent by the instructor one week before the course.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the VCKC Canoe Director - email@example.com
Refine your skills and teamwork to quickly and efficiently paddle a tandem canoe in any direction. Master linking paddling manoeuvres together smoothly and efficiently to enhance your ability and enjoyment of canoeing.
• Running and regular sideslips
• Extended straight line paddling
• Sharp forward & reverse turns
• Bracing strokes
• Advanced tandem rescues (Wet/Dry suit recommended)
• Ropes and knots
• Canoe repair
• Handling wind and waves
Our certified instructors deliver the Recreational Canoeing Association of British Columbia’s (RCABC) Advanced Tandem course in a full-day session normally held on the Gorge waterway near the VCKC clubhouse.
PREREQUISITE – RCABC Lakewater Level 2 or equivalent. You must be a club member to take a course, you will not be able to register until you have logged into the website.
Become a river canoeist! Learn about the nature of rivers, how to prepare & manage for the challenges of moving water, and what to do when things don't go as planned.
• Safety equipment, flotation and outfitting a canoe
• Managing river hazards
• Advanced strokes & braces
• Entering and exiting eddies
• Ferrying to cross the river
• River reading and group travel
• Rescues and swimming in rapids (Drysuit required - can be rented in town)
• Environmental and access concerns
Our certified instructors deliver the Recreational Canoeing Association of British Columbia’s (RCABC) Tandem Moving Water course on a local island river over a weekend.
All canoeing gear can be provided (except drysuit and helment, which can be rented in town), however you are welcome to bring your own equipment if you have it.
Due to the unpredictable nature of river levels at this time of year we have made it so you can register for the course, but not yet pay. One week before the course date we will open up payment ability if the river levels look to be in an appropriate range. If not we will then either postpone the course or cancel depending on rain forecasts.
PREREQUISITE – RCABC Lakewater Level 1 (or proof of equivalent). You must be a club member to take a course, you will not be able to register until you have logged into the website.
Note that dates may change to ensure safe water levels.
The Sayward Canoe Route is a 47 km circular collection of lakes, streams, and portages located just north of Campbell River. In the fall of 2016, Mike Teachman and Graham Spencer decided to tackle this route with standup paddle boards (SUPs). Using photos taken along this beautiful route, Mike and Graham will describe the journey, starting from the minimalist packing needed for the SUP trip, to the final burger and beer in Campbell River.
All are welcome to join Mike and Graham for a fun evening!
“Hooray, hooray, the first of May! We’ll Paddle the Cow from Lake to Bay” – credit to Tom Staebell
VCKC will be holding its Annual “Running of the Cow(ichan)” this year on Saturday and Sunday, May 2nd to 3rd. This is a two-day moving water event where we paddle the Cowichan River, from Cowichan Lake all the way down to the ocean – river water levels permitting. This is open to all VCKC members who have completed Moving Water 1 (River) Canoe training.
On Saturday we will start at the weir at Cowichan Lake at 10 am and paddle down to Stoltz Pool camp. A shuttle will be set up for those who choose not to paddle the canyon. At the camp, we will enjoy a great evening with a hearty meal and warm campfire to share tales of the day's events. On Sunday morning, we will pack up the camp and complete our paddle as far as the water levels will take us, with a final shuttle back to the vehicles.
Camping is available at the Stoltz Pool Group Site in Cowichan River Provincial Park. Cost for the event is $25 per person and includes: Provincial Park camping fee for 2 nights, shuttle of canoes and canoeists to drop off and pick-up spots, and dinner on Saturday night.
Club members who are not paddling, may also join us for camping and our Saturday night dinner, as its a great place to hike and bike in the area.
VCKC also invites all moving water paddlers in the area for the weekend to celebrate the last great weekend of river paddling before the summer low water levels set in (well hopefully there will be a few more weekends).
If you are interested in attending, please register or contact:
Learn to paddle a canoe by yourself, even in windy and rough conditions. You’ll adapt the paddling stokes learned in the Level 1 Tandem course to solo paddling while sitting in the centre of a canoe. You’ll gain independence as you enhance your understanding of how a canoe responds to each paddle stroke. By completing this course you’ll be able to branch out to the other courses the club offers, such as ocean tripping and the advanced tandem and solo courses.
• Solo paddling positions and trim
• Pivot point
• Extending your strokes for better control
• Solo spins and sideslips
• Self-rescues (Wet/dry suit recommended)
• Effective reverse paddling
• Introduction to environmental ethics
• Access concerns
Our certified instructors deliver the Recreational Canoeing Association of British Columbia’s (RCABC) Lakewater 2 - Basic Solo in a full-day session normally held on the Gorge waterway near the VCKC clubhouse.
PREREQUISITE – RCABC Lakewater Level 1 or equivalent. You must be a club member to take a course, you will not be able to register until you have logged into the website.
355 Gorge Road West
Victoria, BC, V9A 1M9
Current at Gorge-Tillicum Bridge
Tides at Gorge (Victoria)
Inner Harbour / Local Marine