“My partner Douglas Wright and I are the owners of Tlaook Cultural Adventures. It's a traditional dugout canoes tours that we do. Our tours are educational, it’s kind of in the eco-tourism of Tofino, BC and we probably take out over 1,000 guests a year.

I'm from Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations. I come from a family that has been making canoes
for hundreds of generations. You can go anywhere, you can sail on the open ocean,
they're made for this place.

The word 'canoe' originated from the word 'kenu' - meaning dugout.

We're one of the only companies that really focus on cultural knowledge and having a cultural tour of the area. Every trip is different and we try to tailor it to the people and what their interests are. Some people come out and they just want to paddle and look at the scenery.

Some people come out and want to learn all about native spirituality, and some people want to learn all about politics and treaties that's going on.

I think one of the more unique aspects of our business is probably the family history part of it, because really, all the things we speak about on the trips and the vessel that we're in is passed down from my family: all the stories, the histories, building the boats…

Birchbark was the perfect choice to build canoes because it was lightweight, smooth, waterproof and resilient.

Tofino is very much a tourist destination, and we are most busy July-August and that used to be our tourist season, but then it stretched from June to September, and now it's almost year-round.

The word of mouth locally is probably the most important kind of marketing that we have. We also do a lot of internet marketing. We spend a fair amount of time submitting our site to different search engines, and we also directly email people and market to businesses, corporate retreats and what not.”