Kayaking With Giants
As I sat in my kayak, gently bobbing in the water, sun warming my face, I almost feel the need to pinch myself – directly in front of me was a massive, sparkling iceberg. “This is amazing!” yells my partner, seated in the back of our tandem boat, and it was. Not many can say they spent their Sunday paddling around two 10,000 year old giants – but Ocean Quest Adventure Resort made it possible.
Sea Kayaking is a new offering for Ocean Quest. They are Newfoundland and Labrador’s only full service dive and adventure resort offering scuba diving, iceberg diving, boat tours, snorkeling with whales – they even have a full service spa on the premises! When they emailed me to say there were two giant bergs within kayaking distance, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.
As we drove to the picturesque town of Conception Bay South, it suddenly came into view – two white dots in the distance. “They look really big…” I thought, “surely those aren’t the ones we’ll be paddling too?” They were. Ocean Quest got us suited up with life jackets, paddles and helmets (safety first!). We hopped on their zodiac, kayaks in tow, and started to make our way out of the harbour. The bergs (and my excitement) grew by the minute. Our guides, Johnny and Chantelle, filled us in on the history of the area, some local ghost stories and even pointed out a Bald Eagle that was circling overhead. It was perfect.
Once we were within paddling distance, into the kayaks we went. Always keeping our guide between us and the bergs, we spent an hour exploring them. We weren’t the only ones – the ocean was dotted with sail boats, speed boats and even one brave swimmer! The icebergs were everything you could hope for. They were enormous and sparkled with a perfect white at the top and a deep turquoise at the bottom. We close enough that we could see the outline of the ice underwater to experience their enormity. We paddled in wide, sweeping circles around the bergs, stopping sometimes to gently bob and just enjoy the serenity of the ocean.
When we were done, it was back in the zodiac to head to shore. We took a quick detour to a little baby berg (or bergy bit as we like to call them) that was floating close to the shoreline. Johnny got us close enough to reach out and touch it – I’ve handled chunks of icebergs on shore before, but never touched an actual berg that was floating in the ocean – it was magical!
This has been a banner season for icebergs in Newfoundland – the last count saw over nineteen thousand floating in and around our shores. At Ocean Quest Adventures, the “Adventure” is paramount. Their Sea Kayaking Tours give you the opportunity to get up close and personal with with these glacial giants. Whether you paddle along the stunning Conception Bay coastline, to Kelly’s Island for a mug up and barbecue, or a “Tow and Go” to see the stunning sandstone, shale, and granite cliffs and caves of Bell Island, they strive to give you the tour of a lifetime, getting you home safe and sound with memories of a unique Newfoundland & Labrador experience. Book now!