Safety Information for Guides

For Guides to ALWAYS Bring:

Guiding ImageWhen you are guiding you should always have a VHF radio with you (channel 68 to reach Ahousaht, 16 for distress calls and 22a for coast guard liaison, you can also use your VFH to check the weather and ocean conditions). You can also bring your cellphone but remember that on many parts of the trail you will not receive service. Always, ALWAYS carry a first-aid kit with you and make sure to replace items every time you use them. It is a good idea to include some painkillers, antihistamine, an epi pen and some afterbite in your kit. Including a small knife, matches and a flashlight in your kit is also a good idea. Often it is wise to bring some extra food and water in case your guests run out. Packing some extra socks or warm clothes is also a good idea because guests will sometimes forget these things and it is wise to have them just in case. Don’t forget toilet paper and hand sanitizer! Bring your own drinking water as potable water is not available in the park. There are 2 fresh water creeks in the park, but all surface water must be boiled, filtered or treated prior to consumption. Consider bringing a flare or bear spray with you if there have been recent cougar sightings. Often garbage or tsunami debris can be found along the trail, it is a good idea to bring a garbage bag to pack out the litter that you find and keep the trail clean for other guides and hikers.

For Guests to Bring:

Guiding ImageThe weather on the trail is subject to change very quickly. Always encourage your guests to bring a light layer of clothing, an insulating layer (like a fleece or a hoody) and a rain-proof layer. Always ensure that your guest have proper footwear, such as water-proof hiking boots, waterproof runners or gum boots (no flip flops or sneakers with no tread). Ensure that your guests have at least one liter of water each as well as sufficient food for the duration of the trip. It is a good idea to encourage them to bring energy bars or trail mix, the hiking and the exposure to the weather will likely make them more hungry than usual, remind them of this! If you are guiding overnight trips ensure before you depart that everyone has appropriate camping gear, change of clothes and food and water for the whole trip. Remember that if your guests don’t want to carry to much you can always have a water taxi meet you with extra supplies at your camping destinations.

For Assistance

In case of injury, sudden bad weather or emergency use your VHF or cellphone (if it has service) to call for help:

Tofino Coast Guard: (250)726-7313
Ahousaht Band Office: (250) 670-9651
Wildside Trail Office: (250) 913-0022
Ahousaht Holistic Center: (250) 670-9558
Tofino Hospital : (250)-725-4010
BC Parks Clayoquot Sound: (250)725-2149 or (250) 954-4618

The best locations for emergency boat pick up are the rocks on the south end of Cow Bay, the beach in front of the Cabin, the rocks on the west side of the river and the rocks at Kutcous. Always be sure to inform the Wildside office before departing on a trip so that they know how many guests you have with you and your ETA.

Safe Behavior:

Guiding ImageRemember that there are many wolves, bears and cougars along the trail. Ensure that all food and items smelling of food, as well as any loose objects, are stored out of reach of wildlife (there are food caches in the designated camping sites). At no time should food be offered or made available to wildlife - to do so is in violation of the Park Act. Should you be making fires, ensure that they are in the designated areas and you have put out all embers before leaving the fire unattended. Use caution with tree and rock climbing. Ensure that your guests do not eat any plants or intertidal animals without asking you if it is okay. Do not leave any garbage behind and ensure to leave camping sites as you found them.

Nuu-chah-nulth Cultural Info For Guides

* All material sourced from, Ahousaht Wildside Heritage Trail Guidebook, (1997) with permission from Stanley Sam

NCN LinkNuu-chah-nulth and Ahousaht History

Stanley Sam's Lifetime in Clayoquot Sound

Nuu-chah-nutlh Traditional Weather Forecasting