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“San Juan three day sea kayaking trip”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Outdoor Odysseys

Outdoor Odysseys
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Since 1987, Outdoor Odysseys has been offering quality guided sea kayaking and whale watch tours in the San Juan Islands of Washington State. Our tours feature an opportunity to search for Orca whales and eagles while paddling. We offer great camp cuisine including Dutch oven cookery and naturalist guides that are extremely knowledgable about the biological, geological and natural history of the area. We have been selected by National Geographic Adventure Magazine as one of the "200 best outfitters" in the world.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Sacramento, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“San Juan three day sea kayaking trip”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 11, 2012

We booked a late September 3 day/2 night trip knowing the weather was unpredictable and were rewarded with spectacular weather and a fun group. Clark was great by phone and though we never met in person he took great care to be sure all of the details had been worked out and all of our questions were answered (this was our first sea kayaking trip). Sarah was our guide and not only was she a wonderful guide but an excellent cook. Sarah was very knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna and even made a kelp salad for us with one dinner (tastes better than it sounds). We had fun viewing sea lions, harbor seals, bald eagles, mink, and otters. No Orca sightings on this trip and sounds like they had been scarce the previous couple of weeks. We paddled to Stuart Island where we camped both nights and it was nice not have have to break camp. The food was great and Sarah picked some quite decent local wines to serve us (heartily appreciated by all). We had great fun getting to know the other four members of our group. We heartily recommend this trip and Outdoor Odysseys for any novice or advanced sea kayakers who are fortunate enough to visit the beautiful San Juan Islands.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank KIDX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Level Contributor
32 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Gets the job done”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2012 via mobile

We booked a day paddle over the phone a few days before, and found ourselves with another couple on what was a windy but sunny end of season day. The trip across the island took about thirty minutes, and setting up on the beach at a county park another twenty or thirty minutes. Outdoor Odysseys explains that you'll be carrying kayaks from the trailer to the water, and that might be intimidating, but it isn't far, and it is a good way to get a sense of the boats you'll be paddling. Our guide did a good job setting us up, showing us how to hold paddles, enter the boats, steer etc. After entering the cove we headed south for what was about a two hour paddle of maybe two miles.

Our friends in the other boat tended to stay behind but the guide didn't try to keep the group together. We wondered later if the other boat was frustrated by that or not, and we feel that we would have been if we were slower and were missing out on explanations of kayaking technique, currents and conditions, the shoreline, local history, marine mammals, migratory shorebirds, or anything else we were hoping to learn about. Instead, though, our guide seemed in her own little world. She was happy to answer any questions, prepared a nice lunch and seemed knowledgeable on the beautiful world around us, but in the end we left with the distinct impression that on this end of season trip she'd already checked out and was busy planning her off season adventures.

Helpful?
3 Thank Amy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rapid City, South Dakota
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Your Friday Harbor Kayak Choice”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 20, 2012

We honeymooned on the San Juan Islands and took a day trip to Friday Harbor to enjoy this kayak tour. I researched alllll the day tours from Friday Harbor and most are about the same but I believe this company has the edge. Chris's (owner) response to my emailed questions before booking were helpful and well-thought out. This is probably the most environmentally responsible company I have researched, which was important to me. Also, with a beyond-full lunch included, it's the best value as well. And they also allow you to have an adventurous edge, if you are up to it. Magda was great, knowledgeable and just highly entertaining and endearing. She spontaneously erupts into orca calling at any moment!

My only regret was that I was *sure* I saw that they provided water bottles for the day tour, but there was none available. Magda pulled through for me and let me have her lemonade, and there was hot tea (hydration) available with lunch. Anyways... bring your own water!

Truly this was one of our favorite experiences during our 10 day stay. And yes we saw whales! Including a baby and some breaching behavior.

Visited June 2012
Helpful?
5 Thank upwardglory
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Lee, New Jersey
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great day on the water!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2012

My husband and I did the one day "Eagles and Orcas" tour and we had a great time! Neither of us had really kayaked before, but Magda, our guide, was fantastic! We both felt completely at ease on the water. Magda was super knowledgable, and wasted not a minute of our trip--we got a little tour of the island and history lesson en route to the park where we put our kayaks in the water. We had a great lunch prepared by her as well. Nothing like sitting on the beach, in the sun, eating a crunchy and delicious sandwich. We had beautiful weather, calm seas, and sadly no whales. But we had such a blast being on the water, exploring each alcove, and soaking up the sun. We talked about it for the rest of the trip. We can't wait to go back!

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Jessica G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon, United States
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“HIGHLY recommend them!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 6, 2012

My husband and I honeymooned on San Juan Island and did the full day tour of sea kayaking with Outdoor Odysseys. I was one of our favorite parts of the trip, and I HIGHLY recommend them to anyone wanting to try sea-kayaking. From the start, the outfitter had excellent customer service, really trying to make sure the tour group would fit our needs. It was just one other couple and us on the tour which was great. Our guide, Tony, was excellent! Very friendly and very knowledgeable about not only sea-kayaking, but the whole island. He educated us about the island's geology, history, wildlife... My husband and I had never kayaked before, but we picked it up easily with great instruction and felt very safe with our guide. We saw seals, starfish, and orcas during our tour. Another great thing about Outdoor Odysseys, they serve super yummy food, which was a bonus. They also added chocolates to the lunch for us honeymooners! When we return to San Juan Island in the future, we will definitely be doing another adventure with them!

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Leslie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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