When I first looked at swimming in Haida Gwaii I only knew that it was home to the Haida Nation and previously called the Queen Charlotte Islands. I feel my recent trip was really a warm-up. I have so much to learn. At the same time, I am happy to share what I have learned for others looking to swim there.
One of the first decisions you must make is how you will get to Haida Gwaii. If you choose to fly you can land at Sandspit, which is not too far from Skitigate, or at Masset, at the northern part of Haida Gwaii. If you travel by BC Ferries you land will between Skitigate, the village of the Haida people, and Daajing Giids, the village formerly known as the Village of Queen Charlotte. I chose to take the ferry as I was already half way up the coast in Waglisia (Bella Bella). Plus I was traveling with Ray, and friends Aly and Ben; I enjoy just sitting and being with them for long periods. It is not often we have this opportunity.
Knowing I would be taking the ferry I next had to figure out where to stay. I wanted something close to the water so I could observe how it moved before I dove in. While researching, a young man named Jaahljuu (Graham Richard) reached out through Instagram. Jaahljuu is a member of the Haida Nation and had heard I wanted to swim in Haida Gwaii. He kindly shared his knowledge and insights. He suggested I stay at Jags.
After reviewing the website I knew it was where I should stay. It is owned and operated by a Haida family, in the village of Skitigate, is right beside the ocean, and as a bonus has a fabulous place for breakfast, great coffee and conversation.
After staying there for a week, I learned it was the perfect place for me. Being there is what ultimately helped me decide on my swims. If you are interested in swimming in Haida Gwaii I highly recommend it.