SISKA's October 2016 Newsletter. Upcoming events, reports and articles
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October 2016 SISKA Newsletter


Dear <<First Name>>,

Welcome to the next edition of the SISKA newsletter; happy reading. After a busy summer, this is quite a long issue!

We are very pleased that paddle leaders are now tending to send in short articles on their trips. Grateful thanks for that! Sometimes they also need a couple of photos (one can't really lead and shoot), so let them know if you have taken photos. If other members have contributions (like the new "Tips for Trips" feature below), do contact one of us.

All our past newsletters are archived at:

Michael Jackson (SISKA president) and Ben van Drimmelen (editor)

Table of Contents


Upcoming Events

October 1, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm,  (RELAXED PADDLE)

October 9, 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm, 

October 16, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm,  (ENERGIZER PADDLE)

October 23, 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm, 

October 26, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm, SISKA General meeting, topic to be confirmed

October 30, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm,  (ENERGIZER PADDLE)

November 13, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm,  (ENERGIZER PADDLE)

November 20, 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm, 

November 23, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm, SISKA General meeting, topic to be confirmed

November 26, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm,   (ENERGIZER PADDLE)

For more details, go to the SISKA website

SISKA's Christmas Party

Mark your calendars now! SISKA’s Annual Christmas Luncheon Party will again be held at the Royal Victoria Yacht Club on Saturday December 3rd, 12-3 pm.
Great food, terrific company and loads of festive fun are guaranteed so look for more details to come in the next few weeks and be sure to register early!

Lost Paddle at Cattle Point

A local paddler, Fred Gladu, found a Werner paddle at Cattle Point and would like to return it to it’s owner. Anyone who recently lost their paddle at Cattle Point can contact Fred Gladu at and describe the paddle.

September's Club Meeting - John Kimantas

Meetings are back underway after our summer "recess" and our September meeting featured John Kimantas. John came down to Victoria to share with us some stories about things he has learned over a few decades of paddling our coast. He divided the talk up into ten "topics" ranging from wind to food to wildlife and shared many wonderful anecdotes with a packed room. One of John's most important lessons learned is when not to head out - good judgement is a key seamanship skill!


(Little things that make life easier when you are out there)

This is the first in a new series, courtesy of Debbie Leach. Please send your trip tip ideas, including recipes and whatever else, to her at

Bring Boots

Your feet stay warm and dry. Great for washing dishes and avoiding ankle bug bites and sandy socks.

What’s in a Name?

This is our local name series. Most of our featured names are drawn from “The Encyclopedia of Raincoast Place Names” by Andrew Scott. We have a copy in the library (see the next article)!

Pat and Coles Bays

Last month we had a paddle from Pat Bay to Coles Bay and back, so it seemed appropriate to look at their names.

Previously known as Union Bay, Patricia Bay was renamed after Princess Patricia, granddaughter of Queen Victoria. She came to Canada with her parents when her father Prince Arthur became Canada's 10th governor-general. In 1918, she was named the commander-in-chief of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. However, she relinquished all of her royal titles when she married Alexander Ramsay in 1919.

Coles Bay was named in 1860 after John Coles, a midshipman aboard the HMS Thetis under Captain Augustus Kuper (after whom Kuper Island off Chemainus was named, until recently renamed Penelakut Island). Mr. Coles retired from the navy in 1857 and tried farming for several years near the bay named after him but soon retreated to the UK, maintaining that the Saanich land was "not even good enough to grow potatoes".

SISKA's Library

The SISKA Library has dozens of CDs, DVDs and books covering a wide range of topics including weather, seamanship, navigation, camp craft, cooking, kayak repair, travel, natural history and wildlife. We also have videos to inspire you with paddling opportunities in BC and around the world plus guidebooks to help you plan your own explorations. On a dark, wet and blustery winter night, perhaps you'd like to curl up with A Boat In Our Baggage - Around the World with a Kayak by Maria Coffey, or the DVD This is the Sea!                                             

The library catalog is available online at; just sign on with your SISKA userid and password, then hover your mouse over the Members tab and click on "SISKA's Library". Find an item you'd like to borrow? Library materials can be signed out at every SISKA monthly meeting at tables at the back of our meeting room. Is there something missing from our library? Send your suggestions to or donate a book or DVD by contacting our librarian.

Drysuit Repair Kits

If all your adventuring has started to make your drysuit neck or wrist seals turn gummy or they're starting to split, it's time to do a little gasket repair. The SISKA library has two drysuit repair kits for Kokatat suits available for sign out, with the jigs and instructions needed to make the repairs. You'll need to supply your own replacement gaskets and aquaseal (from a local paddling shop). If you borrow a kit, please return it to the club librarian immediately after the repair so that other members can use it. Contact the SISKA librarian at if you need to use a gasket repair kit.
The Discovery/Chatham Island wolf (Photo by Cheryl Alexander)

Discovery Island Marine Park Closure

Many of you may have heard that the park is closed to visitors until the spring while the Conservation Officer Service assesses the situation. A group brought a dog with them to the park but then called the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre to be "rescued" from the interested wolf when they felt "threatened". You can read about this story on the CBC web site (one of the few media reports to accurately describe what happened).

The club has sent a letter (click here to view) to the minister responsible as well as the BC Parks Branch protesting at this seemingly unnecessary closure. Though the park is closed above the high tide line, it is still possible to land on the beach for a break without contravening the closure. (Thanks to Dave Chater for his help with the letter!)