Friday, April 24, 2009

SURFING HAIDA GWAII

What a weekend. April 3rd Jen and I finally headed up to north beach on the Queen Charlotte Islands. I had been up to Masset a number of times to fly into the Outpost Lodge where I have been working as a salmon fishing guide but Jen had never been up there. We arrived to amazing weather on Friday and we took advantage of this by doing a 25 km run out to Rose Spit from Tow Hill. Incredible thing was we ran for 2 hours and never saw anyone on the beach. North Beach is a stunning place and we could actually see the mountains of Alaska. There was also an amazingly clean swell hitting the shores so after the run I was in my wetsuit and headed out for some incredible rides just west of Tow Hill. Surfing North Beach had been on the list for awhile so it felt incredible to be out here all by myself surfing some beautiful waves. The water was freakin cold though. Coldest I have been in and after 10 minutes my hand were pretty much frozen but I couldn't bring myself to come back to the beach. Shortly before hypothermia set in I managed to stumble back to the beach.

That night we had the best halibut and chips on the island at this cool little spot at the trailer park. I mean it.....awesome halibut. Saturday we awoke to 30-40 knot winds, typical charlotte weather and we decided to take our rental and go and explore the North Island. We headed down to Port Clements to check out the Haida Canoe, then it was west to Rennell Sound. I wanted to surf the west side but our progress was stopped short with too much snow on the crazy road down that connected us to the sound. Glad we decided not to push it, i am sure it would have turned into an epic. Instead we went south to Queen Charlotte City, then to Skidegate, up to Tlell and back up to Port Clements where we went on the Golden Spruce Trail. If you have not read the book Golden Spruce check it out. Great read, especially if you have ever been to the charlottes or plan on going there. Then it was back to our accommodations at the Beach House, owned by West Coast Fishing Club. Dinner that night was at one of the best restaurants I have ever been too, no kidding. Its called the Trouthouse, a super funky place owned by Kelly and Jonathon. If you are ever up around Masset you have to stop here to eat. Incredible organic food. I had a buffalo burger 2 feet high and Jen had a really good salad. I think I won though and for desert we both won because we had home made apple pie with icecream. What a day.

Sunday we woke up and I had a really amazing surf session at a riverbreak with a few locals. It was so much fun. Jen had a great time too and was really comfortable in the peeling beach break waves. I really did not want to leave but we had a flight to catch. Next year I would like to bring a crew of people up there to surf north beach for a least a week. I highly recommend the trip, we scored on the waves, had some great adventures and met some really cool people. We can't wait to get back.