Introducing Kate Hives: Our Adventure Specialist in a Spray Skirt!

By Jules Torti | October 26, 2021

When I look at Kate Hives profile on LinkedIn it’s obvious: this woman loves to be outside. She’s like the cat that will curl around your ankles with affection but then shoot out any open door when you’re not looking. 

Kate has been a sea kayak guide, coach, examiner and outdoor educator for over 20 years. Fun fact: For eight years she was a high rigger, setting up stage lighting and audio structure for arena performances and live theatre. Kate has also worked as ski patrol at Castle Mountain and as an educator and facilitator with Outward Bound. She also competes with The Hurricane Riders as a rough-water kayaker in Deep Cove, BC.

Yes, she likes to play and we’re so glad she’s decided to play full-time with Wild Women Expeditions!

Kate has been an integral part of the Wild Women team since 2016, as a wilderness guide and program developer. This fall she merged into a new but totally fitting role as our Adventure Specialist. You can see why, right? It was a no-brainer. This woman looks good in a spray skirt and knows how to navigate rapids and find the downstream V!

Let’s have a virtual cup of pine needle tea with Kate Hives–we’re thrilled to have her in our cockpit!


Please brag a little about yourself–even though we know it’s not your thing!

I have been a wilderness guide, mostly by way of kayak, for the past 20 years. I have guided folks from around the world on the shores of Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii, BC, Canada. I have spent time in the wild waters of Patagonia, Chile and paddled the thrilling coast of North Wales too. 

I initially joined Wild Women as a guide for the Tofino Multisport Adventure and Dreaming Into the Wilderness and ended up running these programs for 5 years!!! So good!! Both programs were filled with Wild Women, magical moments and so much adventure! I have some great stories from these trips!

I love to weave the extraordinary into ordinary life and build relationships with people and places wherever I go. I am now a mother of a 17-month-old babe and life has shifted. I am so happy to be on the Wild Women team helping gals find the right adventures for whatever moves them!

It’s the famous and telling Barbara Walters question, “And what tree would you be, Kate?”

An arbutus – no question!! For those who live outside of Canada, it’s known as a Madrona–

it’s Canada’s only native broad-leafed evergreen tree. 

When you were a starry-eyed kid, what place did you dream of traveling to?

I always imagined my first travel destination to be New Zealand. To date, I have not explored it! My soul is Spanish, for sure, so spending time in Spain and in South America makes me feel at home!

From your travels, what recipe have you brought home with you to remind you of where you’ve been?

My favourite easy, go-to recipe is Chilean Lentejas. The dish is named for its main ingredient – Lentils – and is enjoyed in many parts of Chile, especially on cool days. It is a great way to use up the end bits of meat and veg too! Not extravagant, but easy and fulfilling!

What Wild Women trip is on your dream list?

I’m not a horse rider – not since I was 12, at least.  SO…I would love to do the Patagonian Cordillera Riding Adventure in Argentina one day!!! Probably a 6-year-old-self dream!

Kate Hives has proven that she has a laser focus vision of what makes her soul happy and her energy for challenge and experiencing the outdoors is contagious. Her dad reminded her early on: “You can’t be optimistic, if you’ve got a misty optic!” 

You can read more about Kate and her favourite Dolly Parton quote here. If you’d like to chat with Kate about a particular Wild Women trip itinerary, she is our steely Adventure Specialist and can help you determine what destination is the perfect one for you to experience! Send your questions and Dolly Parton song lyrics to