January/February 2018

January/February 2018
January/February 2018
January/February 2018
January/February 2018
January/February 2018
January/February 2018

Nootka Marine Adventures – More than just the largest fishing resort on the island
Larry E. Stefanyk & James Fisher

Nootka Marine Adventures built their reputation catering to the sportfishing enthusiast; however, it has also become a preferred destination for guests looking for more. From enjoying an authentic wilderness experience to learning about the areas historical significance, this area has a lot to offer. You can also participate in a variety of getaways offering a blend of activities including their highly rated outdoor programs, seminars and newly offered health & wellness retreats.

Whether you decide to stay in one of their 39 serviced camp/RV sites with water and power, premium lodge suites and chalets, or one of their luxury yurts, Moutcha Bay Resort has a wilderness experience for everyone. NMA’s extensive fleet of boats are also based here, including eighteen of their large, comfortable guide boats, a premium selection of rental boats ranging from 18 to 24 feet in length and a full-service marina for the do-it-yourself mariner; offering fuel, bait, tackle, and 70 moorage slips, many with 15 and 30 AMP power. If you would like to mix in a little variety to your sportfishing adventure, the area also offers a range of day trips including; kayak & SUP rentals, a children’s playground with a zip line, caving, hatchery tours, hiking and ATV trails.

The variety of outdoor activities available include:
Outdoor Programs – May, June & September
• Beach Seine – Hosted by their in house Marine Biologist, participants use a seine net to take samples of marine life from the beach in front of the resort. The experience familiarizes participants with the invertebrate and fish species that are found in the tidal and eel grass ecosystems.
• Crabbing and Boat Safety – Educates participants on the basics of boat safety, boat operation and gives them the opportunity to actually operate a pleasure craft. Effective crab harvesting techniques are also taught.
• Wildlife & Environmental Awareness – Familiarizes youth with the local wildlife, flora found on the West Coast of Vancouver Island
• Upana Caves - Explore a spectacular local cave systems using a well-maintained trail.
• Outdoor Survival – Bush craft techniques and equip including hands on shelter building, fire making, navigation and survival skills.
• Conuma Hatchery Tour - Provides participants with an overview of the local fish hatchery operations including egg taking, incubation, feeding, fish pens and the various stages of the salmon life cycle.
• Kayaking - Ocean kayaking safety, paddling techniques, rescue etc. while exploring Moutcha Bay in a kayak.
Hiking and Historical Tours – May to September
Explore the the Nootka Island Trail, Leiner Bouldering Trail, The Lookout, Coral Cave and Maquinna Trail or take a tour of the historically rich Yuquot (Friendly Cove).
Yoga & Wellness Retreats – May, June & September

Nootka Marine Adventures host a number of highly rated retreats and seminars from their various resorts. Whether your interested in yoga, wellness, culinary, artistic or crafting beer be sure to contact them to inquire what they have to offer throughout the season at their various resorts.

Freshwater Fishing:
The freshwater fishing in the area is also exceptional. Within close proximity are the; Conuma, Canton, Leiner, Gold and Burhman, and Malaspina Lake all located a short drive from their land based Moutcha Bay Resort.
Government Certified Fish Processing:

Nootka Marine Adventures operates two provincially licensed fish packing facilities, one right at Moutcha Bay Resort and the other at Newton Cove Resort. Your fish will be carefully filleted with rib bones and fins removed before being portioned out to your request. Each piece is vacuumed packed using high quality plastic, properly labeled and flash frozen. Finally, before leaving, the fish is packaged in a cold storage liner and waxed cardboard box ready for transport home. On a side note - all the other lodges in the area drop their catch off to be processed at the lodge and any angler can drop off their catch as long as they have the proper documentation.

Getting there is easy:
From Campbell River head west on Hwy 28, which meanders along the Upper Campbell Lake and mountainsides, for about 91 kms (57 miles), towards Gold River. This is considered one of the most spectacular drives on Vancouver Island. Upon arrival in Gold River, keep heading straight following the signs to Tahsis. Moutcha Bay Resort, located at the mouth of the Conuma River, in the beautiful sheltered waters of Nootka Sound, BC, is located 43 km north of Gold River. The resort is just 45 minutes from Gold River and is easily accessible by car, keep in mind that this is an active logging road that is well maintained gravel with paving on the steepest hills. If towing a boat, make sure your brakes are functioning as the road has grades as much as 18%. 6 km (3.7 miles). After the Conuma Fish Hatchery you will see the entrance to the resort on the left hand side of the road. There is a boat launch, large marina with gas, diesel, tackle, bait and ice as well as fully serviced camp sites, lodge, chalet and yurt accommodations and a licensed restaurant. Parking is available on site. All of the resorts are also accessible by boat or float plane.

Nootka Marine Adventures has it all: three wonderful resorts in spectacular settings. They can satisfy the varied needs of every outdoor enthusiast and pride themselves in creating custom crafted wilderness adventures for individuals or groups wishing to fish or just explore the spectacular and enjoy the historically rich region of Nootka Sound and Esperanza Inlets.


Huxley’s Run: 

Campbell, the small boulder, emerged from the hillside. The spring freshet had tunneled a channel to where he had been hidden. Uncovered, Campbell took his first look at the landscape and felt the warming rays of the sun for the first time in over 1,000 years. He knew his destiny was in the valley below, where the mixture of lake and river flowed eventually into his namesake river.
Campbell stayed on that precipice for another 500 years until a big Black Tail buck miss-stepped and Campbell was nudged just enough to send him into a delightful trip of gravity. Campbell rolled and frolicked, picking up pace on the steep slope. Campbell hooped and hollered as he bounced off trees and larger rocks. He cried with glee as he was swept off the cliff into the air and dove toward to water.
Campbell felt the sublime feel of weightlessness. And then he was nestled among others. Boulders and gravel of varying sizes surrounded him in the depths. They murmured amongst themselves about Campbell’s perfect size and shape. Larger than an orange, not as big as a grapefruit, they knew he was chosen by the King and Queen.
Campbell would have the honour of covering the King’s and Queen’s spawning bed. He would be buffeted by the King’s and Queen’s powerful tails until he was in position before and after the royal nuptials had taken place. There he would help raise the royal children. He would give them succor against the fierce flow of water. He would offer protection from predators.
He would, in his most perfect form, be a sentinel in the great circle of life. The small salmon that tickled him as they emerged from the royal bed would, in three to seven years, return to fan him. Their huge tale fins would move him to another position, year after year, until it was just right, for another brood. The King’s and Queen’s progeny needed him as much as he loved them.
But on that day in the 1950s, thousands of years after his birth, just when was he was going to take the final plunge from Elk Falls into the Campbell River and his Royal Heritage, and find his destined place, his life stopped. He was wedged into a bank of other rocks, some his size, some smaller, some larger. All were asleep and a growth formed on them that only occurred on unmoving structures.
What should have been a flow of water had ceased. What should have, in spring and fall, turned into a raging torrent and picked him up and carried him downstream over Elk Falls to his destiny was nothing but a cold, deep void.
In his last moments, he saw the rings of something that plopped onto the surface above. The rings stretched weakly outwards and then dwindled to nothing. Campbell watched as a small orange-ish salmon egg drifted down and settled near him.
“Are you my destiny?” he asked, drowsily.
“I am, or, was,” said the egg. “I was dropped from my mother while an eagle carried her to its nest. And I have a message for you.”
Campbell blinked wearily, and asked about the message.
“The humans have damned the river and lakes downstream,” said the egg. “You will have to wait to fulfill your life’s destiny.”
Campbell’s eyes closed lazily and blinked again. He asked, “How long do I have to wait?”
The egg, unprotected and immobile, saw the crayfish coming towards it. As the claw took it and brought it towards its mouth, the egg cried out, “From one year to over thousands of years!”
Campbell watched as the egg disappeared into the crayfish’s mouth.
He blinked slowly. His eyes remained closed.
“Really?” he murmured. “Well that’s not so very long.”

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