The Big Chop Experience...

The Big Chop is an incredibly fun night of paddling on the waters of Vancouver harbour. Line up on the start line under the Burrard Street Bridge with the setting sun in your face and the warm summer breeze on your back. Paddle the scenic course as fast as you want and in no time you'll be crossing the finish line with a big smile on your face. Be sure to stay for a cold drink, a tasty hotdog and for your chance to win some amazing draw prizes!

Who comes out? The Big Chop encourages participation by all levels of paddlers. Beginners (even first timers) can take on the Little Chop (half the distance) while more ambitious paddlers can tackle the full course.
Where is it? Vanier Park near the Planetarium and Burrard Street Bridge (south side). Turn on Whyte Ave and follow it around the Planetarium. Vancouver, BC, Canada
Click here for a detailed location map
When is it? Every second Thursday starting on April 21, 2016, and ending on Thursday, August 25, 2016.
Click here for a detailed schedule.
When time does it start?

6:00pm - Registration Opens
6:45pm - Registration Closes
7:00pm - Race Starts
8:30pm - Awards and Post Race Social featuring free hot dogs, drinks and snacks for all participants!

Where can I park?

Located behind the JS MacMillian Planetarium close to the water. Meter parking in effect. Or ride your bike and lock it up at the compound.

How long is the course?

Big Chop Course: ~8km
Little Chop Course : ~4km
Course Maps are posted on the Schedule Page

What kind of boat can I paddle? Surf - Surfskis
K - Ocean Kayaks
DK - Double Kayaks & Dugout Canoes
OC1 - Outrigger Solo
OC2 - Outrigger Double
SUP - Stand Up Paddleboard
How much?
How to register?

RACE #1 - #9
$10 -- Per race (pay on the night of the race. Cash or cheque only)

$20 for RACE #10 - This will be our 100th Big Chop and we're going to celebrate! We'll have a special menu, live music, cold beverages, and a whole bunch BIG prize giveaways.

$100 -- Series Pass includes all 10 races, one free beer per race, and a brand new Big Chop T-shirt.  A $170 value! Register online now.

Can I rent a boat?

Boat rentals are available. We have single and double kayaks, paddleboards, and a canoe in the rental fleet.

To book, please email [email protected] with your name, boat preference, which course you are doing (little 4km or big 8km). The cost is $10 for a single kayak or SUP, $15 for the canoe, and $20 for a double kayak.
We take rental reservations starting at 9pm of the previous race night. First come, first serve, except for Series Passholders (see below).

Series Passholders will now have priority on boat rentals. As a Series Passholder, you will have a 24 hour window to make your reservation for the next race. This means that from 9pm following a Big Chop race, you have until 9pm the following day to email your boat rental request for the next race. After this time, any unclaimed boats will be reserved on a first come, first serve basis.

Also, kayaks are limited to up to two single kayaks or one double kayak per person.

MEC Kayak
Introductory Clinics:

MEC is offering introductory clinics before every Big Chop race for all newbie paddlers. The MEC staff will show you the basics of sea kayaking to give you confidence on the water. There is a $15 reservation fee and you must reserve your spot in advance by registering online at http://events.mec.ca/find-an-event (search for the Big Chop). Please book early as space is limited and does book up quickly.

Results & Photos: Go to the Big Chop's Facebook page for photos from each race. Results will be posted on the WebScorer website within 24 hours of the race.
Thursday Night
Post Race Social:

Stick around for our infamous Big Chop BBQ featuring hot dogs (meat & veggie), lemonade, chips and cookies. It's all included with your race fee!

We'll draw for prizes and recognize the top paddlers in each category. It's a great night of mingling with your fellow paddlers. Everyone welcome!

What can I win?

Every night we'll draw for some amazing prizes from our sponsors. We'll post the full list of prizes as they are confirmed. Stay tuned!

Rules and Regulations


  1. Each racer must be able to be self sufficient.  Each racer must have the ability to do a wet exit and recovery with-out assistance.
  2. Each racer must offer assistance to another racer in need or they are capsized.  This is for fun.  Let’s play nice and be safe.
  3. PFD’s / Lifejackets must be on the body or attached to boat. If not on the body, you must have a boat leash.  NO exceptions!
  4. No flipping other racers or playing dirty.
  5. Inside boat in the turn has the right of way when they are at least 20% ahead of the outside boat.  Outside boat must give way and not hit the boat on the inside if they are in front.  Race smart, do not leave to big a gap or someone will fill it for you. Racing shells will get damaged by a recreational canoe if a collision occurs.
  6. Boat numbers must be placed on the bow of the right side of the boat (when sitting inside the boat)
  7. Know Your Limits. If the weather or water conditions change and you are not comfortable please turn back. See rule number one.
  8. Safety boats are there for everyone’s safety.  There is a lead boat and trailing boat. If you need assistance, wave your paddle in the air and yell for help. 
  9. Know the course.  Each racer must know where to go.  If the lead boat is called to the aid of another racer, each racer must know where the course route is. To be credited with the finish a racer must do the full course.
  10. Respect. This is a fun event and please be respectful of staff, volunteers and other racers.  If there is an error or problem, let’s work it out.  Keep the positive attitude. We are in Vancouver on the water… How much better can it be?

Copyright © 2014 Mind Over Mountain Event Co. All right reserved. 

Get Social with the Big Chop!