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 – Spring 2009

The newsletter for the SKT community

We have left the Toucans behind and returned to the land of the Puffins! May 12 is the official commencement of Seascape’s season in Canada this year, and many day trips, multi-day experiences, training courses special programs are already scheduled, promising to make this summer a busy one at our northern headquarters on Deer Island in New Brunswick. To reflect Seascape’s annual transition from Costa Rica to Canada, we have converted our web site banner color from tropical burnt orange to Maritime blue. But that’s not all that’s new with the site, as you’ll see below. You’ll also read about some of our upcoming multi-day trips, as well as two special events slated for September.

PADDLING ALONG THE ROCKY COAST OF NEWFOUNDLAND

PADDLING ALONG THE ROCKY COAST OF NEWFOUNDLAND

Newfoundland Trip Filling Fast

Good news! Seascape is returning to “The Rock” June 26-July 4, 2009. This intensive journey of discovery will take a group of 8 paddlers to the Bay of Exploits to explore the rugged coast of the north central region of Newfoundland, a true Canadian wilderness. Mountains, fjords, whales, icebergs and the warmth of Newfoundland hospitality are yours to experience on this island-hopping adventure. Deadline for reservations is May 20 and we still have a few seats left. See our home page for more information or e-mail us and request a full itinerary.

Yoga and Paddling Combo a Success: Three More Coming Up

“On my recent trip to Costa Rica, camping on Playa Quesera, paddling in Curú Reserve on El Espiritu del Mar, I felt the comforting, soothing rhythms of my life return. In the last year, grief and stress were the rhythms I lived. But nothing could prevent me from feeling all the glorious natural rhythms of Costa Rica.” Thus begins a blog filed April 26 by Sandy Taylor, a participant on our March trip combining yoga and paddling. The trip was so successful, we have three more scheduled:

  • July 17-20 Ebb and Flow, a lodge-based yoga and kayaking trip on Deer Island, New Brunswick. See our home page for more info. The deadline for reservations is May 20.
  • Jan. 7-19 El Espiritu del Mar, camping, paddling and yoga in Pacific Costa Rica. Early Toucan Discount 10% off if paid in full by Aug. 31
  • May 14-22 El Espiritu del Mar, camping, paddling and yoga in Pacific Costa Rica. Early Toucan Discount 10% off if paid in full by Dec. 31
YOU CAN ENJOY A NEW YOGA AND KAYAKING COMBO IN NEW BRUNSWICK THIS SUMMER

YOU CAN ENJOY A NEW YOGA AND KAYAKING COMBO IN NEW BRUNSWICK THIS SUMMER

Web site updates make trip planning easier

We have made a number of changes to this site to make it easier for you to plan your trips with us. In the upper right-hand corner of your screen, click on the Puffin for Canada trip info or on the Toucan for Costa Rica trip info. You’ll find that now we have pricing and trip departure dates beside each trip entry. We’ll even list when the next day trips are departing on Deer Island this summer, so you can join the next group going out.

New blog builds Seascape’s community

As we announced in March, Seascape has created a new way for our community of paddlers and friends to keep abreast of our day-to-day activities. You can always find our latest blog entry starting at the bottom of our home page – or by clicking on Our Blog in the left column menu. We upload three recent photos per essay and the feedback has been great – people love to hear about our paddling and wildlife adventures. And, more and more people are finding out about Seascape because they find the blog online. We are open to guest bloggers, so get in touch if you want to write an essay related to Seascape paddling.

Enhanced online photo gallery gives you the big picture

Back in March we revamped our online photo gallery to present nine new categories with cool slide shows of the wildlife and paddling in all of our destinations. The newest gallery shows our Costa Rica yoga trip. Check them out here by clicking on “View our photo gallery” under the three small photos on any page; be sure to scroll down to see the gallery choices, and then click “Show as slideshow” to see the one you choose. We also have a lot of new banner photos at the tops of our pages for you to enjoy. These rotate so that each time you return to a page, you’ll see a new banner photo.

YOU COULD BE HERE ON NEW YEAR'S EVE

YOU COULD BE HERE ON NEW YEAR'S EVE

What are you doing New Years Eve?

Stop reading now if you already have plans. If not, think about ringing in the New Year in Costa Rica. A special five-day sea kayak expedition takes you into the heart of “the dry coast” for New Year’s and allows you to encounter marine and terrestrial wildlife you can only experience camping on white sand beaches and immersing yourself in the ocean setting from dawn to dusk. A true paradise for sea kayaking, the Reserva Curú on the Nicoya Peninsula is the point of departure for this amazing coastal exploration into the Gulf of Nicoya. Each day will offer an array of paddling possibilities to explore around our base camp on Playa Quesera, where we will live alongside monkeys, hermit crabs, iguanas and a variety of colorful forest, sea and shore birds. Every sunset is an event in this idyllic setting. Come celebrate New Years with us under the stars and let us share this special paddling environment with you.

Giant Leatherback Turtles lay their eggs on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica

GIANT LEATHERBACK TURTLES LAY THEIR EGGS ON THE CARIBBEAN SIDE OF COSTA RICA. A NEW TRIP IN APRIL CAN TAKE YOU THERE.

New Trip Takes Paddlers to See Sea Turtles

Would you like to see sea turtles in their natural habitat? We are developing a new twist on a tried and true trip to Tortuguero National Park that will offer an amazing opportunity to get up close and personal with giant leatherback turtles – and contribute to their continued well being. We are partnering with a conservation project called SEE Turtles that is a matchmaker for tour operators and non-profit organizations that help to protect turtles and secure their nests and eggs from poachers. You can read more about it here. On Seascape’s new Turtle Twilight trip, our group of paddlers will kayak into Parismina on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica, and spend 24 hours learning and volunteering through the Asociacion Salvemos Las Tortugas de Parismina (ASTOP). On the nightly beach patrols, volunteers guard nesting turtles, learn to identify turtle tracks, count the number of eggs, record tag numbers and assist with relocating the eggs to the local turtle hatchery. They also safeguard the hatchlings on their first journey to the ocean. You can read more about ASTOP here. After the turtle experience, the group will continue paddling in Tortuguero for the next four days. Dates for this trip have been set for April 17-25, 2010, but can be somewhat flexible as long as they are around mid-April to mid-May, when the turtles are nesting. Please let us know if you have an interest in this special conservation vacation.

THE POOL AND RESTAURANT AT THE HOTEL TAMBOR TROPICAL

THE POOL AND RESTAURANT AT THE HOTEL TAMBOR TROPICAL

Seascape helps Tambor Tropical Go Green

Before departing Costa Rica, Seascape began what will be a long-term collaboration with the hotel that has become our southern base of operations to institute a number of green practices. Tambor Tropical is a small, exclusive boutique hotel that can easily incorporate sustainability initiatives such as recycling, the use of environmentally friendly products and more energy-conscious procedures into its day-to-day operations. On many occasions this season we have explored the nearby Panica River by kayak, and told you about our experiences in our blog. The health of this estuary and its ecosystem is in question. Seascape will collaborate with the hotel to create more understanding and awareness of the importance of the river and to engage the local community in efforts to protect this important ecosystem. More on this continuing partnership with our friends at Tambor Tropical when we return to Costa Rica in the fall.

Seascape Partners with Ekoventure

Seascape was recently asked to join a prestigious new web site community called EkoVenture, which focuses on sustainability and brings together tens of thousands of unique adventure travel experiences from tour operators in over 150 countries. The site allows travelers to easily find, compare, and securely book tours online. If you have done a trip with Seascape, you can go to the EkoVenture site and write a short review of your experience, which will enable other paddlers to find out about us. Just go to EkoVenture.com, and put Seascape Kayak Tours in the search engine. Find the trip you did, and then click on Traveler Reviews on the left-hand menu. If you are a tour operator, please let us know if you have an interest in listing your trips on EkoVenture and we will introduce you.

Seascape featured in Group Travel Leader

In April, the trade publication known as the Group Travel Leader ran a story on Seascape’s multi-day experiences in Tortuguero National Park on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica. Published since 1991 in Lexington, Ky., USA, by Mac Lacy and Charlie Presley, the Group Travel Leader is the national newspaper for the Group Travel Industry. With a targeted readership of 30,000, it is America’s only monthly newspaper published exclusively for the billion-dollar group-travel and packaged-travel markets. View a PDF of the article.

Presentation in Lexington, Kentucky to Highlight Seascape Trips

Phillip Gall’s is an outdoor retailer in Lexington, Kentucky, specializing in outdoor clothing, kayaks, canoes, snow ski equipment, climbing gear and a complete line of accessories. Those who live in the Lexington area can learn more about Seascape Kayak Tours at a presentation by Frances Figart to be held May 27 at 8 p.m. at the store’s New Circle Road location. This slide show will provide an in-depth overview of our paddling trips in all of our locations. Seascape will give a 10% discount to anyone booking a multi-day trip during the discussion period just after the presentation. Learn more about Phillip Galls here.

Seascape’s Green 15 Slated for Labor Day Weekend

This year is Seascape’s 15-year anniversary! So we are planning a green celebration, our Green 15, for Sept. 4-7 with live music, local organic cuisine and great paddles around Deer Island in The Bay of Fundy. The event will have a sustainable focus and include opportunities to learn from guest speakers about global ocean clean-up initiatives as well as ways to conserve and protect our local Bay of Fundy and West Isles Archipelago’s unique marine ecosystem. There will be new Seascape T-shirts, paddling clinics and announcements about Seascape’s exciting future. Please mark your calendars now and bring tents to camp out at Deer Island Point Campground, or arrange to stay at a local accommodation such as Sunset Beach Cottages and Suites. Come and reconnect with old friends, spend some time paddling, learn about ecotourism and help us protect the Bay of Fundy.

THE AMOUNT OF TRASH ON OUR BEACHES AND IN OUR OCEANS IS STAGGERING

THE AMOUNT OF TRASH ON OUR BEACHES AND IN OUR OCEANS IS STAGGERING

Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup Sept. 19-27

Seascape is looking for a few seriously committed hard-working paddlers to help us with the TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup. Organized by the Vancouver Aquarium, this annual event brings together hundreds of thousands of Canadians who are concerned about the state of our oceans and shorelines. Seascape will be the Site Coordinator for a cleanup of the shoreline surrounding Deer Island. To learn more about the TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, click here.  Contact us if you would like to sign up to help collect trash by kayak. Let’s make Deer Island a better place for the many whales, seals, porpoise and sea birds who call it home.

Parting shot

This photo was taken by Chris Hoyt just off the coast of Deer Island from the east side of Beans Island, a common shore break on half-day trips in the Bay of Fundy. Looking east along the New Brunswick shore of the bay, it demonstrates the incredible panorama of the West Isles Archipelago, one of the most important and productive marine ecosystems in the world.

THE AMAZING BEAUTY OF THE BAY OF FUNDY

THE AMAZING BEAUTY OF THE BAY OF FUNDY