Biggest in the West

Jul 28, 2015

When you think of the best big wave boating destinations, you generally think of Ottawa, Quebec, and pictures of Stakeout! come to mind. I don't deny that these waves are unreal, but if you find yourself creeking in BC or Washington, or planning that Skook trip, check out spot called Brilliant, near Castlegar, BC, home to some of the biggest waves in the west. 

My Ottawa trip, back in May/June

Brilliant is host to 3 different waves, all coming at different levels. There is Brilliant wave, which comes in a variety of flavors from small and wave/hole-ish to XL premium wave. When things push even higher, Solstice comes in just above. When it's totally maxed out, you can try your hand at Lucky 13 - a massive though inconsistent wave that dishes out big airs as much as big beat downs. 

Brilliant Wave at premium levels - with eddy service. 

Generally you want to hit Brilly at ideal levels for the wave that carries the locations namesake - it's all eddy accessible and you get consistently amazing rides. If it's too high though, you get solstice up above. Hit up vimeo and do a search for Brilliant Wave, you'll find Sven Perschmann from Fluid brilly sessions as well as my own at a lower level.

Mike Mazara on Solstice

As mentioned, when it gets epic high, Lucky 13 (aptly named) becomes the most consistent wave. It can be hard to catch when it surges as a huge green tongue pulls up on the sweet spot. I've paddled the Ottawa at ultra high flows, hit gladiator, generally been around, and Lucky 13 is probably an equal match. 

 Lucky 13.

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