Two canoes pulled up on shore along a rocky ocean coastline.
Location: Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador. Photo credit: Richard Alexander

Advanced Coastal Canoeing

Discipline: Canoeing Program: Coastal Canoeing Stream: Skills Development

The Advanced Coastal Canoeing program prepares participants to perform a variety of rescues and manoeuvres in exposed coastal conditions in moderate winds, waves, current and moderate surf.


This level also introduces current prediction, personal weather forecasting and low visibility (fog) navigation by dead reckoning.

The main focus of this course is good decision making that reflects the limits of the paddlers ability in relation to current and forecasted environmental conditions.

Please note that this program is a recreational coastal canoeing program and therefore reflects typical locations for recreational paddling on the ocean in a canoe. It does not deal with the rounding of significant headlands or paddling long stretches of exposed coastline with no landing opportunities. The program does not consider those locations as “typical” recreational coastal canoeing locations.

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Course Overview

Typical Course Length

21 hours of instruction.

Course Topics

Safety and Rescue
  • Review of Advanced Lake Tandem Canoeing skills (within the context of coastal canoeing)
  • Incident management and rescues skills
  • Canoe outfitting
  • Expanded communication
General Paddling Skills
  • Mastering strokes and skills
  • Anticipating and adapting to changing environment effects on the canoe
Paddling Strokes
  • Review and refine of Advanced Lake Tandem Canoeing paddling strokes
Manoeuvres
  • Close maneuvering around rocks (rock hopping)
  • Entering and exiting eddies
  • Forward ferries
  • Bracing in conditions where required
  • Maintaining control of the canoe in a head, tail and beam winds reaching speeds of 15 knots
Knowledge
  • Leadership and management skills
  • Flexible leadership styles
  • Facilitation of group decision making
  • Advanced tides and currents
  • Trip planning
  • Expanded understanding of land-wind interactions and sea state
  • Weather forecasting
  • Dead reckoning in low visibility
  • Course limitation
  • Leave no trace in the context of overnight coastal canoeing
Course Prerequisites
  • Certification
    • Advanced Lake Tandem Canoeing and,
    • Intermediate Coastal Canoeing
  • Experience
    • Experience with multi-day coastal canoe trip
  • Recommended
    • Introduction to Tandem Moving Water Canoeing
    • Wilderness first aid
    • VHF marine radio operator’s certificate
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