In mid-June 2012 we spent several hours with kayaking guides Mack and Sophie exploring Granite Bay and into Small Inlet on Quadra Island. Twelve years ago on a drizzly day, we first saw Granite Bay while exploring the back roads on the island. Finding the bay on a Quadra Island map and noticing how big the bay is, with islands at the mouth and Small Inlet off one corner, those enticing nooks and crannies became a must for future exploration. At long last, in February this year we arranged this trip with Out For Adventure, a kayaking company on the island that has their office conveniently located in the village at Quathiaski Cove. Jim, the owner, was completely cooperative with our plan. In June, at the designated departure time, we showed up at the shop, where we boarded the already-loaded van and set off up-island. Getting onto the water was done efficiently, and we were soon paddling, under a moody sky. Sophie, from New Zealand, was working as a guide while travelling. Undoubtedly, she was not only certified, but incredibly experienced; nevertheless, she very professionally deferred to head guide Mack. He lives locally and obviously loves the island, which made this trip extra-special for us because of the insights he added to the experience. We learned a lot about the landscape that we were passing through, which included old seasonal aboriginal village sites, and thoroughly enjoyed his delightful sense of humour. By lunchtime, the sky had cleared, and the meal that Mack and Sophie laid out for us on the beach of an old homestead was amazing in quantity, variety and tastiness! Mack was very skilled as lead guide, subtle but firm and invariably amusing. Although he regretted that time constraints prevented us from reaching the extreme end of Small Inlet and the short trail there that leads to the other side of the island, nonetheless we paddled back to the van extremely satisfied with our day and vowing that we will do it again—with Out For Adventure and, hopefully, Mack; Sophie, too.
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