Bruce in kayak.

"We specialize in small group travel, which minimizes environmental impact, increases safety standards and allows for personalized, enriching and authentic experiences."

— Bruce Smith, founder and owner, Seascape Kayak Tours Inc.

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SEASCAPES-Winter 2012

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Costa Rica

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The season is well underway in Costa Rica with both multi-day and day experiences. Our partnership with Tambor Tropical continues to grow as we embrace sustainable tourism through education, environmentally friendly practices and the development of new experiences for guests. Seascape experiences  have become integral elements of Tauck Worldwide’s Culturious itineraries in Costa Rica.

As part of our community based initiatives, Seascape recently held a  paddle and beach clean up in partnership with our local supermarket in Tambor. The  staff and management from the supermarket enjoyed a paddle on Bahia Ballena and then participated in a beach clean up. The focus was to draw attention to recycling efforts and initiate the use of environmentally friendly shopping bags at the store. Plastic shopping bags are a huge problem in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. Sea turtles can easily mistake a floating plastic bag as a jellyfish, one of their favorite food sources.

We are designing a sea kayaking curriculum for local students in Tambor. This program will be cross – curricular in nature and include elements of physical education, environmental education and English. The program will be launched in March 2012.

Islas Del Golfo February 29 – March 07, 2012

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Several spaces remain on our next multi-day experience on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. Trip cost : $1990.00 plus tax pp.

The trip includes 5 days sea kayaking / 4 nights camping, snorkeling, hiking, organic meals, local transportation and two nights at Tambor Tropical. Contact us for more details. www.seascapekayaktours.com or email [email protected] or call 011 506 8314 8605.

Brian Atkinson, photographer, visits Seascape – Costa Rica

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Brian Atkinson, a well known photographer from New Brunswick participated on a multi-day sea kayak expedition from Curu in December. Brian captures the spirit and sense of place:

“If I had closed my eyes before getting to Tambor and tried to imagine a tropical adventure, a tropical vacation, it wouldn’t have been much different from Tambor. Great accommodations built out of teak, a deep-blue pool, thatched-hut bar, tall palm trees, swinging hammocks and the sound of the sea- and quiet, very quiet and with only a few other guests around all was set for a good bout of rest and relaxation. Much needed after a demanding photo shoot in Honduras.

So needless to say the time at the Tambor Tropical was the best in easy living but it was the time out on the Bay of Curú that gave me the memories, even two months later, that I keep thinking about. We had time for a three-day, two night camping excursion with Bruce and it couldn’t have been better. Sunny skies, calm waters and pelicans cruising in formation made the paddling a delight. And then there was the excursion through the shadows of the mangrove estuary. I felt like I was entering one of those lost-in-the-jungle movies’ sets. With a bit (a lot) of help from Bruce, we spotted a ton of birds but the resident crocodile somehow gave us the slip- still, maybe that’s a good thing.

On shore, at our two-night base camp on the beach, life was every bit as good as out in the boats: howler monkeys roared, coatimundis and iguanas came by for a look-see and Bruce’s coffee, well, reason enough to jump out of the tents in the morning. It definitely made me paddle faster.

It’s two months later as I write this, winter has settled into New Brunswick, but I still get an almost daily smile thinking about Tambor Tropical and our time out on the water with Bruce. Truly one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences. As they say, thanks for the memories.”

View an album of Brian’s photos from the trip

 

A Wing and a Prayer

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A recent full day experience to Las Islas Tortugas

A beautiful, calm morning on the Gulf of Nicoya, brilliant blue sky and wispy, cirrus clouds. A gentle swell rolls as we paddle across to Islas Tortugas. At the halfway mark we spot a Brown Booby bobbing in the swell . The bird seems to be fatigued and we paddle over to see if we can help. With some assistance the Booby hops onto the back deck of Eric’s kayak and promptly falls asleep.

Eric a PhD student from Utah is happy with his new passenger. We continue our paddling trip and spot a pod of dolphins just off of Isla Alcatraz. The group paddles into some chop at the entrance of the passage between Isla Alcatraz and Isla Tortuga but our feathered friend is undisturbed. Just before we reach our landing spot the Booby, rested, suddenly took flight, ready to rejoin its colony at the outer edge of the islands. Connection made…

Canada – Summer 2011

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The 2011 summer season in Canada unfolded nicely. This was in large part due to the leadership of Guy Quinn, a seasoned Seascape staff member and Greg Wood an experienced outdoor educator and paddler from Newfoundland. You can read more about both of these colorful characters on the staff page of our web site. The season began with a wonderful trip to the Bay of Exploits, Newfoundland. August was an incredible season for marine life on the Bay and Fundy. Participants on both private multi-days and our new Marine Mammals and Majestic Islands Trip experienced the true nature of this special ecosystem.

Newfoundland 2011

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The Bay of Exploits in Newfoundland worked its magic once again in June/ July 2011. This is a special trip for both guides and guests. Tim and Jackie Hammond from Ontario capture much of the magic in the following passage:

“Over the past ten years Tim and I have gone on a few of these kayak trips with different companies. We both agree that this was the best kayak trip organized by the best company and led by the best guides that we have ever been on. We would go on another trip with your company and guides in a heartbeat. After receiving your e-mail the other day, we sat down and jotted some thoughts down on paper and so I’m writing those musings to you now.

 

How do you take strangers from different parts of the country, continent, cultures and linguistic groups, ages, professions, genders, temperments, paddling and backcountry camping experience, and ensure that everyone has a great experience? I have asked that question a few hundred times since returning to our home. We have been on trips before where there was no attempt by the clients or the guides to make the group experience work better. Bruce, you and Maria and Greg and Guy by some wonderful blend of experience and alchemy shaped this group of strangers into a remarkable ‘band of brothers/sisters’ who laughed much and worked together to forge an unforgettable experience in an unforgettable place. However you and the others did this I commend you. I feel that I have received a rare and special gift. Perhaps you recognize that on an outdoors experience such as this one we are all

 

stripped back to who we really are at our personal cores. We do not have the trappings of our professional and personal lives to limit us to how we think and feel. ( I just think of Tim participating in both the smudging ceremony and the ‘rock’ talk on our last night as proof of this!!)

We would love to go on another trip with you or your company. Somewhere warm might be really nice for a change. We are totally flexible as to the time of year: fall or spring. I think that coming down for your two sides of Costa Rica trip would be a wonderful experience.”

On The Horizon

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Seascape – Costa Rica will be offering a full range of day and multi-day trips until May 2012. Seascape – Canada will officially open for the season in mid-June 2012 and remain open until mid-September. Our programs will include both day and multi-day experiences from our base on Deer Island.

Newfoundland

The Magic of the Bay of Exploits,  Newfoundland June 24 – July 03, 2012

$2350.00 plus tax pp (double occupancy) 8 participants maximum

Kayoga

Lauri Nemetz our yoga instructor will return from a sabbatical to lead our multi-day Kayoga programs in Canada and Costa Rica.

Deer Island

Ebb and Flow

July 6- 9, 2012.

$795.00 pp plus tax

Costa Rica

Espiritu Del Mar

January 4 – 12, 2013

$2350.00pp plus tax

Majestic Islands and Marine Mammals

Deer Island

August  17 – 19, 2012

$825.00 pp plus tax

Seastar

Our Seascape “ Seastar “ brand team is working hard to bring exciting new trips your way in 2012 and 2013. Current destinations include Baja, Mexico, Haida Gwaii, British Columbia the Western highlands of Scotland and a trekking trip to the Torngat Mountains, Labrador.

In the Spotlight

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Seascape was nominated for inclusion in the Canadian Tourism Commission “Signature Experiences Collection®”. If Seascape is accepted into the program our Canadian experiences will be introduced to specific markets worldwide. Wish us luck .

UK journalist Paul Wade selected our full day sea kayaking trip on Deer Island as his top travel experience of 2011. This was featured in the Sunday Telegraph, London UK. Click on Best Holidays of 2011 and scroll down to Paul Wade to get the story.

The Last Wave

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Some of you may have noticed that our award winning website has remained static for some time. 2011 was a year of transition and we have taken steps to update all information on our site and are committed to maintaining a stronger web presence. Our Facebook postings have also resumed, providing regular insight into Seascape happenings/ experiences. Look for our Seascape blog to resume in the very near future… We know that we offer special experiences and want to share more exciting news with our paddling community. We would also like to hear from our friends and if you have a photo or a story regarding a Seascape adventure that you would like to share, please send it to us.

Looking forward to welcoming you on a trip to Costa Rica or Canada in the future

All the best for 2012

Bruce

Photo contributions for this issue were from Brian Atkinson, Nick Hawkins, Greg Wood and Bruce Smith