Nanaimo Paddlers is a group of over 200 friendly folks who enjoy recreational sea kayaking activities. Nanaimo Paddlers includes people from all age groups (19 years and over) and of various skill levels, from novice to advanced. We paddle year-round, several times a week, weather permitting, in the ocean waters (and occasionally some lakes) in the Central Vancouver Island area.
Nanaimo Paddlers is incorporated under the Societies Act of British Columbia. View our constitution and bylaws.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What equipment do I need to have to join?
Nanaimo Paddlers does not provide equipment, so you will need your own kayak, paddle and other equipment as described in our Guidelines for Participants in Club Paddles.
In order to paddle in ocean waters you will require a seaworthy, ocean-going kayak with watertight bulkheads or flotation and proper deck lines for rescue purposes, and a spray skirt to keep the cockpit from swamping. We recommend that you purchase a kayak no shorter than 14 feet for stability and efficiency on group paddles. Sit-on-top kayaks, some inflatable kayaks and some foldable kayaks are not suitable for ocean travel around Vancouver Island.
If you have questions about gear requirements, or are unsure what to purchase, we invite you to contact our Skills & Education Committee; one of our club ambassadors will be happy to reach out and chat with you. Or, you may attend one of our monthly meetings, where our members will be happy to provide information or assist you.
Does Nanaimo Paddlers participate in any clean ups or other community events?
Yes. we are involved in shoreline clean ups each year. We have done Newcastle many years and also Ladysmith Harbour.
How much does a membership cost?
Membership fees are set each year based on a cost recovery basis. In 2023 the annual fee is $40.00, for the latest information of fees see the Join/Renew page here. Membership is from January 1 to December 31 each year.
Where do you paddle?
During the winter we complete day trips, usually in the mid-Vancouver Island area. During the warmer months, we enjoy longer trips to many interesting places on the British Columbia West Coast and even freshwater destinations.
Does Nanaimo Paddlers have guides or leaders?
We have hosts or event organizers who suggest a trip and post it on Meetup. (It can be just a couple of hours, or up to several days). Since every participant is responsible for his or her own safety, hosts are not certified guides. Members check the listing to see if the trip is a match for their ability and endurance level and can sign up and join the paddle.
I'm new to paddling. Can I join?
Yes! If you are 19 years of age or older, you can join our club and participate in our monthly meetings. In order to undertake an on-water trip with us, you must possess basic paddling skills and the ability to perform an assisted rescue -- both as a rescuer and a swimmer -- in order to ensure your own safety and the safety of other club members.
If you need to learn or brush up on your safety skills before joining our club, there are several instructors and training resources in the mid-Island area that can help you. Check out our Kayak Instruction Regional Resource List for options.
If you have questions about skill requirements or where to get training, we invite you to contact our Skills & Education Committee; one of our club ambassadors will be happy to reach out and chat with you.
How do I join?
Click on Join at the top of the page.
A package of information will be sent to you upon receipt of your signed membership application, waiver and membership fee. This will be done by e-mail. Membership cards can be picked up at monthly meetings, or mailed upon request.
Membership is valid from January 1 to December 31. If you join during the fall months (Sept to December) your membership is good for the following year. If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org