Head Up The Creek

  • Hosted By: False Creek Rowing Club
  • Sanctioned by RCA and Rowing BC (2023)

The False Creek Rowing Club was incorporated in 2008 in response to activity by the City of Vancouver's plans to create a home to "human powered non motorized boating" (i.e. paddling and rowing) at the East end of False Creek as part of the Olympic Village.

As False Creek is home to upwards of 800 dragon boaters each night in the spring and summer there is a need to have a permanent home for their sport. With 4500 local adults and roughly the same number of kids participating in programs, there is a huge opportunity in creating a home for watersports in the most accessible location of any urban area in Canada. Replacement docks, which will be able to land rowing shells, were completed for the 2016 Head Up The Creek and planning for club house amenities is being undertaken by the Park Board.

In early 2014, the False Creek Rowing Club entered into a lease at the Burrard Civic Marina for a 20' x 60' compound to store boats. Early 2015 saw the doubling of that space when an adjacent compound became available for lease. We have several availalbe to our membership at the moment, and a few more in the works, but like all clubs: having equipment (such as safety boats, oars and shells) to meet demand is a difficult balance to find.

The regatta itself was first held by the FCRC in 2011 (previously the Head Of The Creek was organized by Vancouver College until the spring of 2001) and the prizes of cakes have started to become a hallmark of the event. As the oldest rowing regatta in the City of Vancouver accessible to recognized clubs, we have welcomed crews from around the province and the Westcoast of the United States and look forward to being an event that builds on the long winter of aerobic training.

In November of 2014, Mayor Gregor Robertson of the City of Vancouver designated March 15, 2015 as City of Vancouver Rowing Champions Day, and permitted the False Creek Rowing Club to annoint the overall winner of the Head Up The Creek regatta in this and future years as the City of Vancouver Rowing Champion.

The 2016 regatta was the first with the new dock provided by the Vancouver Park that allowed us to avoid wet launches for the larger boats at the regatta.

March of 2017 was the year it snowed and March of 2018 we had hail. Having got that out of the way, we are hoping for blue, warm skies.

For 2023 the race is being cut from 5 km to 3 km to make the warm up at the start safer. The overall rowing distance remains the same as you have to row down to Science World for the start.

City of Vancouver Rowing Champion Overall Winners:

  • 2015 - Gary & Jon from Nicomekl Rowing Club
  • 2016 - Matthias, John, Dimas and Larry from Vancouver Rowing Club
  • 2017 - Jim, John, Dimas and Larry from Vancouver Rowing Club
  • 2018 - Richard & James from the Delta Deas Rowing Club
  • 2019 - Loraine from Vancouver Rowing Club
  • 2020 - Covid 19
  • 2021 - Those who anchored randomly in the Creek and made us cancel the event.
  • 2022 - Vancouver College's Men's 4+: Evan, Oliver, Xavier, Liam and Peter