Photos: Labour Day Weekend at Newcastle Island

Club members enjoyed a lovely weekend of day paddles and hikes at Newcastle Island near Nanaimo. Thanks Sue Johnson for forwarding these photos.

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Extensive work done by club this summer in Howe Sound

2020 has seen a number of significant projects at the Howe Sound Recreation Sites. The first was the completion of the volunteer-built prototype Bain Creek composting toilet, and work on the access trail. We will be evaluating the performance of this toilet prototype as it gets used.

It was then decided to proceed with contractor-built toilets at all four remaining sites, based on an adaptation of the two-chamber composting toilets used on the Sunshine Coast Trail (based in turn on composting toilets on the Appalachian Trail). The first of these was completed at Tantalus Landing in early June. At the same time, a large, dangerous granite flake was scaled from a cliff above the boat run by a rock climber/scaler; a hazard tree was felled; a new camping area (“The Penthouse”) opened up above the existing clearing; and rock steps were built to access the new area.

The second of these toilets was competed at Islet View at the end of June. The contractor also used his chainsaw skills to push a trail through to a new camping area on a plateau at the west end of the site. A follow-up volunteer work party kayaked to the site, built rock steps on the new trails and leveled two tent pads in the new camping area. The last two toilets, at Ramillies Channel and Thornbrough Channel, are scheduled to be built in September.

The latest project is a tent platform on the high rock bluffs at Thornbrough Channel. Materials had been dropped off at the site last fall. In early August, a crew of three volunteers camped at the site and built the framework. The decking will be fastened down and stained in a follow-up work party.

Submitted by Steve Best, SKABC Howe Sound Stewardship Chair

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New way to buy maritime charts locally

Looking a chart for an upcoming trip? You can get them in Vancouver at Chartworld. Since Covid started and distribution has changed, Chartworld is the only company licensed in Western Canada to print them.

Member Mike Gilbert passed along the info -- "You can phone them up. They will ask you to send an e-mail to: with your request. About 30 minutes later they will have your chart printed. It is convenient, brilliant and at the same price as buying a ready made chart in the store".

Chartworld / Maritime Services Ltd.
3440 Bridgeway St.
Vancouver, BC
Canada V5K1B6

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Online Tue. June 2 at 7pm – VHF – DCM Radio Review with Mike Gilbert

Review your VHF-DSC (M) Radio skills tonight with Mike Gilbert on "Google Meet". Topics covered will be: Making "that" call; Making a "regular" call; a discussion on DSC; what is "new"; and your new radio's capabilities.

VHF-DSC(M) Radio Review

When: Tue Jun 2, 2020 7pm – 8pm Pacific Time - Vancouver

Joining info: Join with Google Meet using this link:

Who: Mike Gilbert of BC Kayak Centre and member of SKABC.

More details: You already have your ROC which is a lifetime cert. Get back into its proper use and update your information as the new on-water season approaches. This is just a send along topics you specifically would like covered. Club members can find Mike's email address in our directory.

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Message about COVID 19 and SKABC events

Hello SKABC Members,

I hope you, your families and your friends are well and being cautious during these unsettling times. I must say it felt almost surreal when at once many organizations across the country made the wise decision to shift all of most of their workforce from their office locations to their homes. What is currently going on is truly unprecedented for all of us.

As many are doing their part to flatten the curve, your Exec feels that we as paddlers must also be sure that we don't contribute to the problem. Recognizing that maintaining social distancing is critical, but that people are also being encouraged to be active in the outdoors, the executive has made several decisions about upcoming events.

We have cancelled the April club meeting on April 6th and the Spring Fling on May 2nd. For those of you who were planning to attend the BC Marine Trails Spring Forum set for April 4th, please note that is also cancelled.

We all understand that the current situation is fluid and that things can change rapidly, so for the moment we will continue to accept registrations for trips and training. These events will remain on the calendar for now but will be cancelled if and when it becomes clear that they will not be able to proceed as planned. The timing of such cancellations will depend on, among other things, the amount of planning and advance notice required for a particular event and updates on the current situation.

For some of our upcoming events, it should be possible to maintain social distancing if people commit to being careful and to taking a few simple measures such as traveling in separate vehicles, keeping an appropriate distance from each other when launching and landing or during breaks, not sharing food, etc. So, if leaders and participants are willing, events such as day paddles might go ahead as scheduled even under the current restrictions. (This, of course, will change if "shelter in place" restrictions are imposed.) Other events, such as courses and multi-day trips, where social distancing will be more difficult, are much more likely to be cancelled.

Notwithstanding the club’s refund policy, full refunds will be issued to participants for cancelled training as well as to participants who choose to withdraw from training voluntarily. We have to support each other and grant each other grace as circumstances continue to unfold.

Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions about how certain events will be handled. You can reach out to the Trips coordinators for trips, to the Training Officer or Course Coordinators for training, or any one of us listed under “Contact” under the “About SKABC” tab.

If anyone attends paddles and/or training and is later diagnosed with the virus, we request that you reach out to your fellow participants and let them know. It’s the right thing to do.

Be well everyone!

Your SKABC Executive

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