You’ve got your Mustang Survival Adelphi long sleeve, your Lululemon water-repelling tights, a backup 3/2 neoprene sheath in your dry bag, and your Sea Gods hoodie from this list of What to Wear Paddle Boarding in the Autumn. All set, right? Not quite! You see, not all beaches are idyllic for stand-up paddleboarding when the weather turns for the season. It’s not so much about the water conditions, but the amenities and environment around you.
To account for this, you’ll want to identify the best beaches for paddle boarding in the autumn. Given that the BC Lower Mainland is the birthplace of Sea Gods it’s only logical for us to begin with the Greater Vancouver area.
Get ready to suit up and join us at one of the following four top picks!
4 Greater Vancouver BC Beaches That Are Ideal for Stand-Up Paddle Boarding in the Fall Season
White Rock Beach
We’re not biased in choosing White Rock as the best beach for SUPing because the Sea Gods HQ is based here. We’re based in White Rock because it’s one of the best places for SUPing all year long, autumn included.
The beach that fronts this coastal municipality of Metro Vancouver is famous for many things, but it’s best known for its dramatic low tide that creates a glassy surface (especially in fall) that is perfect for paddling. A long rock jetty forms a T at the end of the 470-metre-long White Rock Pier that protects the heavily pebbled beach when other adjacent areas get a little too choppy. Fall season parking at White Rock Beach is also plentiful so you don’t have to take a long chilly barefoot walk before reaching the water’s edge. The public restrooms are fairly clean and open all year round so you can quickly get changed into warm dry clothing when done your session. And as alluded to above, Sea Gods is located within a short walk to/from the beach which is super convenient should you forget to bring SUPing accessories, or if you want to rent a board for the autumn day.
Après-SUP Scene: Vancouver autumns aren’t as conducive to sunbathing and beach-hangs, which can be a bummer. This is not a problem for White Rock Beach which boasts one of the best après-SUP scenes in the BC Lower Mainland. Marine Drive is lined with cafes, restaurants, bars, and boutique shops that can turn an hour of paddling into a full-day experience.
This is a good one for paddlers who want to challenge themselves in a relatively open ocean environment. While located in Burrard inlet and often calm enough to paddle the Sea Gods Diatom Ten6 CX or Elemental Wave CX with confidence at low tide, you may need to switch to a touring model such as the Carta Marina CX when westerly winds create waves and wind chop to test your core. But of course, that’s all part of the FUN. The beach at Jericho is also long and sandy, and when the sun hits it around noon on a sunny autumn day you can lay by a log to protect against windchill, and chill in heated comfort between sessions while getting some Vitamin D. Furthermore, Jericho Sailing Club’s recreational amenities such as changing rooms, restrooms, and parking are accessible to the general paddling public.
Après-SUP Scene: Jericho Sailing Club’s The Galley Patio & Grill is open (albeit with limited hours) through the early autumn. The second-story establishment overlooks the inlet to offer one of the best sunset-viewing food + drink venues in the Greater Vancouver area.
Deep Cove Marina
Deep within the recesses of North Vancouver’s eastern edge is Deep Cove, a quintessential seaside community that is renowned for sightseeing, hiking, kayaking, and for the intents and purposes of this article - paddleboarding.
The cove features a slightly rocky beach that may not be ideal for laying about and bouts of spikeball, but it serves as an excellent launching pad for your inflatable SUP. The tide does not shift as dramatically as it does with White Rock and Jericho so you don’t have to pay as much attention to the charts when paddling out this autumn. Once you’ve stroked into its deep blue waters you’ll enjoy crisp air and generally calm conditions. Deep Cove is bounded by Burrard Inlet and Indian Arm which usually keeps wind at bay. The number of speedboats and other watercraft is also kept to a minimum in the fall season. Take your Sea Gods Medusa CX armed with a sense of exploration and peace of mind.
Après-SUP Scene: Deep Cove’s Gallant Avenue hosts a number of great local hangouts, including some of the best donuts in Greater Vancouver BC - Honey Doughnuts & Goodies. Don’t worry, after paddling the expansive inlet you’ll have earned a treat!
We generally don’t recommend paddling in water that we wouldn’t recommend swimming in. However, when it comes to autumn season SUPing in Greater Vancouver we’d be remiss to dismiss the short narrow inlet that runs along the southern edge of downtown Vancouver. In the summertime, False Creek is excessively busy with party boats, water taxis, rowers, and other paddlers which can make it a stressful experience. In the autumn, however, the “noise” comes to a halt and water is so glassy that it reflects your smile right back at you. The sightseeing from a paddler’s perspective is quite amazing. To the eastern end, you’ve got Science World and Olympic Village, and as you head west you will pass Yaletown and Granville Island before arriving at Sunset Beach. If you’re feeling adventurous you can keep paddling through to English Bay (to the right, heading west) or cross the short channel to Kits Beach (to the left).
Après-SUP Scene: Unbeatable. If doing a morning session, enjoy post-paddle sustenance at OEB Breakfast Co. If it’s the late afternoon, pull your SUP up to Mahony's Tavern, and if it’s the early evening simply dock, deflate, pack-up, and explore the hip neighbourhood of Yaletown for countless of possibilities.
Safety First Reminder: Whether paddling in the autumn, winter, summer, or spring - be sure to purchase and pack your personal floatation devices (PFDs) and life jackets for paddle boarding.
Contact Sea Gods today if you have any questions about which Sea Gods inflatable stand-up paddle boards (and accessories) that we’ve mentioned above.