The loon call echoes across the mirrored water as a seal silently swims by. We big city visitors, living a fast and furious pace of life, pick our jaws up off the dock. Our weekend Canada getaway at Blind Channel Wilderness Resort is off to a stunning start.
“We just saw a seal!” I squeal as though an elephant has walked on water.
“Oh yes they are here all the time,” comes the casual reply from a staff member on the dock.
Snow capped mountains of mainland British Columbia peek over the tips of lush forested hills. The puffy clouds admire themselves in the crystal clear water. No strangers to beauty around the world we declare early in our getaway that we have found one of the best places in Canada.
We brace for the mobs of tourists who will surely leap forward to see the spectacle. Instead the tiny ocean ripples the seal leaves in his wake are all that move. Well other than the bald eagle swooping overhead. Is this place for real?
Many times in our travels we bemoan the fact we arrive at a blissful destination a decade too late as we elbow through the crowds for a glimpse of perfect paradise.
Here at Blind Channel we find one of the most beautiful and peaceful places in Canada. On this Canada trip there will be no need for pushing.
Blind Channel Wilderness Resort – A Family’s Passion
Calling Blind Channel home since 1970, four generations of the Richter family own and operate this Canadian wilderness resort. When Edgar and his wife AnneMarie came upon this paradise cruising in their boat, they made the big decision to move their family from the city of Vancouver.
With Edgar’s skill in designing and building and Anne Marie’s prolific art creations, Blind Channel resort came to life. The late Annemarie’s mosaics and paintings can be found throughout the property. Some of her famous German recipes remain on the menu today.
Is this really a secret Canada getaway?
Truth be told boaters have been docking at the Blind Channel Wilderness Resort marina for decades. Not so secret for those who look for a stopover when on their way to Alaska and return year after year. At dinner we overhear a couple say they have been coming to Blind Channel every year since 1981.
Lesser known is the fact that three modern cottages make this the perfect Canada getaway to the wilderness for non-boaters like ourselves.
Located on West Thurlow Island, part of the province of British Columbia, it is one of Canada’s most pristine environments. West Thurlow is part of the Discovery Islands group between central Vancouver Island and the mainland.
Captain George Vancouver, on his sailing expedition of 1792, named the islands after his boat, the Discovery.
I imagine the good Captain’s chin may have hit the deck in awe as well upon first sighting.
Activities at Blind Channel Resort
One of the wonderful things about finding a getaway such as Blind Channel is that activities can be customized based on guests interests.
It feels like a Canadian safari exploring the web of islands and waterways with a local guide. Watching a young grizzly and a larger one chase it, will alone make this one of our favourite Canadian vacations ever.
Sea lions, dolphins, trees with bald eagles perched like ornaments, seals and otters, oh my! Whale watching excursions can also be arranged.
All from the safety of the boat with no other tourists in sight.
Try your hand at catching your own dinner
My fishing experience from childhood includes a willow stick adorned with a red and white bobber to report fish nibbling. Dinner did not look overly hopeful if it relied on my fishing skills.
With the gentle guidance and patience of Eliot, third generation Richter and partner at Blind Channel, we had a glorious and successful morning. The chef transformed our catch into a one of a kind scrumptious meal.
Hiking, Kayaking and Beachcombing
Hike the easy trail to the ‘Big Cedar’ which is more than 800 years old. At the resort you can pick up a map of trails in the area or take a guided tour.
Single sea kayaks and life jackets are available to guests within the protected bay of Blind Channel. I did my best not to squeal with glee when we met a seal while kayaking in the protected bay.
The tides and currents of Blind Channel create an ever changing treasure hunt on the beach. Many of the mosaics created by AnneMarie, and now her great grandchildren Jonah and Charlotte, come from shells and items washed ashore.
How about lunch on a deserted island?
With our two way radio and picnic basket in hand, we step off the Blind Channel boat to a nearby deserted island. All alone in paradise the otter and her baby swim by. I feel as though we are in a wildlife documentary while nibbling on prawns and freshly baked scones.
Accessing the power of the currents, Blind Channel Resort has begun to use tidal power to feed into their electricity grid. Charging lithium batteries with the energy created by the ocean itself, requirements of conventional electrical generation are reduced. This system now presents the opportunity to add solar power to the mix.
How do I get to this Canada getaway?
With no roads leading to Blind Channel, access is by boat for float plane. The wilderness resort has its own water taxi service from Campbell River. If driving, your vehicle can be left at a number of bays with the closest one being Rock Bay. From there it is a short boat ride to Blind Channel.
Float planes have regularly scheduled flights to Blind Channel form from Vancouver, Campbell River and Seattle. More information on getting to this Canada getaway can be found here.
Who is this vacation in Canada best for?
The question might be better phrased “who wouldn’t love this Canada getaway?” For decades Blind Channel has been a full service marina paradise for boaters.
Traveling to and from Alaska and the Broughton Archipelago the mariners keep returning for the great customer service, amenities such showers, laundromat and a general store. Anyone staying within the area comes for the unbelievable food in the Cedar Post restaurant.
Each morning we awoke in our modern waterfront cottage. As the sun rose from behind the mountains and played with the glassy water, we drank coffee sitting on the covered deck.
With two bedrooms and a pull out couch we chat about bringing our family and grandkids. Or perhaps a group of friends. A small wedding or retreat would also be a great fit.
A place so safe you don’t need to lock the doors. Where in the world is that still possible?
Anyone looking to party the night away is not the right fit for Blind Channel. This vacation in Canada is full of beauty, adventure and above all peacefulness.
Sometimes words and photos just don’t do a place justice. Please click on the video below to see Blind Channel and surrounding area for yourself.
Final tips for your Canada getaway at Blind Channel
WiFi is available free of charge. It works but reflects the slower pace of island life. Cell service is available at the restaurant and store but we did not have service in the cabins. The resort has satellite TV although we never turned it on to test it.
The Cedar Post restaurant is open from early June to early September. Lunch is served outdoors beginning in late June through the summer months.
The store at Blind Channel is stocked in summer months with basic groceries and gifts to beer and wine. Be sure to buy the homemade bread. We inhaled it every morning for breakfast. In July and August fresh cinnamon buns and muffins are also available.
Feeling inspired for your own getaway? Pin these to your favourite Pinterest travel boards.
Any Canada holidays in your future? Which activity would you like to try?
We were guests of Blind Channel Resort. All opinions, de-stressing and squeals of delight are our own.