Haida Gwaii Packing List
Simplify your packing—shop at Nat Hab’s online Gear Store for key items recommended for your adventure. Look for this icon in the list below, then go
- While a water-resistant or waterproof bag is not required, it is a good idea to have one, as bags may be exposed to rain during transfers. If you do not have a water-resistant or waterproof bag, and do not wish to purchase one for this adventure, a good alternative is to place everything inside your luggage in some type of waterproof liner. This will help ensure that, even if your bag gets wet, your items inside will stay dry.
- Since the weather in British Columbia can change by the hour, we recommend layering (i.e., T-shirt, fleece, jacket). Keep in mind that it is often cooler on water than on land, and rain and wind are always possible.
- Rubber boots are required. See below for details.
- A waterproof jacket is essential, as we will be exploring a rainforest. A well-fitting garment with attached hood that can be worn over your layers with reasonable comfort is a necessity. It is important that this garment is thoroughly waterproof (not just water-resistant). This will be your most important piece of clothing!
- Waterproof rain pants are also essential for your comfort. Wear them over your regular clothes to keep you warm and dry. Gore-Tex and similar fabrics are both waterproof and “breathable.”
- Dress in comfortable, loose layers. It is far better to wear layers of relatively light, loose clothing than one thick, heavy item. Between each layer there is a film of trapped air which, when heated by your body, acts as an excellent insulator. You can also remove layers more easily should temperatures warm throughout the day.
- Wool and silk base layers are superior to cotton because they can trap warm air even when wet. Synthetic fabrics that spring back into shape after compression are also good. Polar fleece is recommended.
- Waterproof rain gear
—You will need both a rain jacket with attached hood and rain pants. It is extremely important that your rain gear be fully waterproof, not just water-repellent! Flimsy, plastic rain gear is easily torn, rendering it useless for the remainder of the adventure, so we recommend that you avoid these items when possible. Your rain gear may be your most useful pieces of clothing!
—Before leaving home, we recommend jumping in the shower to test out how “dry” your rain gear really is. If it soaks through, bring a different jacket. Thin GORE-TEX jackets are not waterproof enough for the wettest days in the Haida Gwaii.
- Rubber boots (required)
—You cannot do this adventure without rubber boots! Your boots should be knee-high with good tread and be comfortable for walking. —There are very few places that we travel where docks are present, so to get ashore you will be stepping into the water. You should plan to wear your boots for walking in the rain forest as well. Muck boots or Bogs boots are great choices.
- Warm sweater or fleece jacket
- Fleece or down vest
- Warm hat and gloves
- Comfortable, soft-soled, non-marking shoes (for wearing on the boat)
- 2–3 pairs of long pants
- 1–2 pairs of shorts
- 3–4 long-sleeved shirts
—Merino wool long-sleeved T-shirts work well.
- 2–3 short-sleeved T-shirts
- Thermal long underwear (top & bottoms)
- Warm, comfortable sleepwear
- Socks (preferably wool or other moisture-wicking material)
- Swimsuit and water shoes/sandals
—For hot springs
- Sun hat with brim (and strap so it won’t blow away)
—For discretionary gratuities (you may want to bring envelopes for discreet presentation).
—For personal spending (souvenirs, Internet use, and food and beverages not included in your trip fee).
- Water bottle (included in your pre-trip package)
—In our continuing effort to operate our adventures with as little impact on the environment as possible, you will receive a reusable water bottle (unless you opted out on your Booking Form) to take with you on your adventure. We will provide drinking water throughout the adventure for you to refill your bottle. By doing this, you will avoid using multiple disposable plastic bottles.
—There will be a limited supply of binoculars available on the boat, but to ensure you have a pair at all times or if you have a pair that you especially like, we recommend that you bring them.
- Sunglasses (with U.V. filter and strap to secure them)
—Polarized sunglasses help you to see through the reflection at the surface of the water. Most sunglasses are not polarized, and it can be worth purchasing them to get the most out of your wildlife adventure.
- Lightweight neck gaiter (included in your pre-trip package)
—Provides sun, wind and/or dust protection.
- Headlamp or small flashlight (with spare batteries)
- Wash cloth (optional)
—One hand towel and one bath towel are provided for each guest on board the Island Solitude and Island Odyssey, but if you would like a washcloth, you should bring your own.
- Toiletries in reusable containers to minimize waste
—Soap, shampoo and conditioner are provided at our accommodations on land and on the boat.
- Insect repellent and anti-itch ointment
—Insect repellent will be provided on the boat so you will only need to bring your own for use while in Sandspit or if you prefer a specific brand.
—Repellents containing DEET are the most effective against mosquitoes, but please be aware that DEET is a very strong ingredient which can damage plastics, clothing and equipment.
- Prescription medications
—If you are prone to motion sickness we recommend that you bring your favorite remedy.
- Sunscreen and lip balm (at least SPF15)
- Hand sanitizer (included in your pre-trip package)
- Small medical kit
- Prescription glasses/contact lenses
—Hairdryers are not provided on this trip.
- Dry bags, or reusable waterproof bags
—Several sizes for wet or dirty clothing and to protect camera equipment.
- Waterproof dry bag backpack/daypack
—This an extremely important piece of gear, as it will keep warm layers and camera equipment dry while on daily excursions. Your backpack should be waterproof, not just water resistant as it will get wet.
- Tissue mini packs
- Compact, retractable hiking pole (optional for those who would like an extra point of balance)
—If you are bringing a hiking pole, it must fit in your checked luggage, as you generally will not be allowed to carry it on the plane.