April 2022



Thanks to those members who contributed photos and materials. After enjoying a SISKA event or paddle, please consider sending a short (100-150 words) summary article; for more information, contact one of us, newsletter@siska.ca . If you would like to start a regular column, please let us know!

Alan Campbell (SISKA president) and Tony Playfair (editor)

PS: You can find SISKA on Facebook at this link.

PPS: Siska has it’s own Youtube Channel HERE

PPPS: You can find the SISKA newsletter archive HERE

Upcoming SISKA Events

Saturday, March 26th, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM - Edging and Strokes Tune-Up
Saturday, March 26th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Edging and Bracing
Saturday, March 26th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Whiffin Spit to Cabin Point Paddle
Saturday, March 26th, 2022 - 10:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Currents Clinic March 26
Saturday, March 26th, 2022 - 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM - Beginner Currents
Sunday, March 27th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Edging and Bracing
Sunday, March 27th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Brentwood Bay Ferry Wharf to Mackenzie Bight(NEW MEMBERS PADDLE) Paddle
Sunday, March 27th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM - Self and Assisted Re-Entries
Friday, April 01st, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Get Back in Your Boat
Friday, April 01st, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM - Tidal Flow Fun
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM - Current Play
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 10:30 AM - Intermediate Currents
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Rolling 1
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM - Turning Strokes
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM - Rolling
Saturday, April 02nd, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM - Rolling 2
Sunday, April 03rd, 2022 - 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM - Current Play
Sunday, April 03rd, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 10:30 AM - Intermediate Currents
Sunday, April 03rd, 2022 - 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM - Turning Strokes
Sunday, April 03rd, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM - Rescues
Tuesday, April 05th, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM - Maneuvering and Boat Control in Moving Water
Saturday, April 09th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM - Full Day Tidal Race Adventure
Sunday, April 10th, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Blade Awareness Workshop
Sunday, April 10th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Moses Point to Russell Island (FULL) Paddle
Sunday, April 10th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Amherst to Portland Island (NEW MEMBERS PADDLE) Paddle
Sunday, April 10th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Relaxed Paddle - Spirit Bay to Becher Bay Tour Paddle
Sunday, April 10th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM - Balance and Bracing Workshop
Thursday, April 14th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Light Paddle - Cadboro Bay to Cadboro Bay Tour Paddle
Saturday, April 23rd, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Strokes and Maneuvers Refinement
Saturday, April 23rd, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Oak Bay Marina to Discovery Island Paddle
Saturday, April 23rd, 2022 - 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM - Beginner Currents
Sunday, April 24th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Strokes and Maneuvers Refinement
Sunday, April 24th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Relaxed Paddle - Island View Beach to James Island Circumnavigation Paddle
Sunday, April 24th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Oak Bay Marina - Parking Lot to Birding Paddle to Chain and Chatham Islands Paddle
Sunday, April 24th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM - Edging and Bracing
Saturday, May 07th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Strokes and Maneuvers Refinement
Saturday, May 07th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Energizer Paddle - Island View Beach to D’Arcy Island Paddle
Saturday, May 07th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Relaxed Paddle - Fleming Beach to Esquimalt Harbour (NEW MEMBERS PADDLE) Paddle
Saturday, May 07th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM - Self and Assisted Re-Entries
Sunday, May 08th, 2022 - 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM - Strokes and Maneuvers Refinement
Sunday, May 08th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM - Self and Assisted Re-Entries
Friday, May 13th, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Forward Stroke ain’t no Joke
Friday, May 13th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM - Sit up and Pay Attention
Saturday, May 14th, 2022 - 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Pushing the Edge
Saturday, May 14th, 2022 - 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM - Getaway Driver
Sunday, May 22nd, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Spirit Bay to Whirl Bay (NEW MEMBERS PADDLE) Paddle
Sunday, May 22nd, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Brentwood Bay Ferry Wharf to Mackenzie Bight Paddle
Sunday, May 22nd, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Relaxed Paddle - Island View Beach to James Island Circumnavigation Paddle
Thursday, May 26th, 2022 - 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM - Light Paddle - VCKC Clubhouse to Selkirk Waterway Paddle

Upcoming NonSISKA Events

Wednesday, April 06th, 2022 - 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM - Nanaimo Paddlers Meeting, A Materials Scientist Reviews Gear, with Barry Narod

For more details, go to the SISKA website

Community Events of Interest

These events are not formally supported by SISKA, but considered to be of interest to a significant number of our members.

Any member may request an event to be included in this section by sending a note to chairperson@siska.ca

Let’s Stay Healthy and Celebrate Spring Kayaking!

by Alan Campbell

As Covid-19 transmissions and hospitalizations decline in BC, restrictions continue to be relaxed.

Masking is now a personal choice, and, as of April 8th, proof of vaccination will not be required for indoor gatherings, which are themselves already no longer under lower pandemic capacity limits.

However, since the corona virus is prevalent in our communities, we must all continue to take appropriate precautions to avoid transmission by maintaining good hygiene and social distancing as needed.

We are responsible for our own health and should use those protective measures we know are needed to maintain it. If you do develop symptoms associated with the virus you should self-isolate, test and consult a healthcare provider for treatment in the manner appropriate to your condition.

The rules for self-isolation vary depending on one’s circumstances: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19/self-isolation

Happily, Spring has most definitely arrived in Victoria!

Those cooler wet days are slowly being overtaken by warmer sunny ones, and many blossoms and flowers are out in all their glory. Let’s continue to stay healthy together so we can enjoy our beautiful Island home in one of the best ways possible, sea kayaking around our gorgeous shores and islands!

Spring Training 2022

by Alan Campbell

Latest Update HERE

Siska April 27 General Meeting Agenda

by Fred Pishalski

Ocean Photography both on Top and Underneath the Surface by Roger Botting

Our speaker for our April 27th meeting with be Roger Botting, a long time SISKA paddler who has a special interest in diving and underwater photography.

Roger’s presentation will focus on a number of different aspects of diving/diving safety and how these intersect with paddling safety. We will also learn about photography (on water and in water) and the necessary care of equipment. Roger will share some of his outstanding underwater images, we will also view some of the sea life around Victoria that he has been able to capture with his camera.

Roger has had a diving career since the age of 5. After watching many episodes of Sea Hunt, he made his first scuba set, out of a paint can and an old bicycle inner tube. In high school French classes, Roger’s ‘French name’ was Jacques, after who else but Jacques Cousteau. Eventually, in his 30’s, finances and opportunity merged and he started diving for real. The occasional vacation dive was about all he manage until retirement when he and his wife Deborah moved to the cold water diving capital of Canada-Victoria. They currently live James Bay, a two-minute walk to the ocean. Back into the ocean life and dive gear again, Roger resumed diving and photography mixed with kayaking.

SISKA April Zoom Meeting and AGM, Wed Apr 27@ 7:00 PM

Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 871 5168 7356

Passcode: 512829

Multiple SISKA Events Planned for Wednesday April 27th at Garth Homer Center

by Alan Campbell

We have rented the Garth Homer Center Auditorium for in-person monthly meetings over the next year. The auditorium is a very large airy space, easily accommodating our meetings as well as other activities. Detailed location and parking information will be included with meeting notices sent out this month.

* So…on Wed Apr 27th we have planned a few club events! And this month we will have some modest refreshments (sorry, not enough for dinner!) available at the serving counter by the kitchen at the back of the auditorium, and our Club Library holdings (books and DVDs) will once again be set out on tables nearby for you to sign out if you wish.

* A Gear Swap and Sale, beginning at 6:00 pm (sellers/donors can arrive at 5:30 pm to set up) will help you move those unused kayaking items out of your home and into the hands of someone who will put them to good use. A series of swap/sale tables will be set out against the windowed deck wall for people to peruse the items available.

* SISKA’s Annual General Meeting will begin at 7:00 pm The AGM will be broadcast via Zoom to any members who wish to tune in, but the Zoom session will not be interactive, so only members present in-person will be able to vote and participate actively in the proceedings. Our technical skills for successfully holding simultaneous in-person and virtual meetings are improving, but we’re just not there yet! More detailed information on the AGM will be circulated to all members two weeks in advance.

* SISKA’s April Monthly Meeting will begin after the AGM concludes, likely about 7:45 pm A few announcements about upcoming activities will precede the introduction of our speaker, Roger Botting, experienced sea kayaker, SISKA member (our Treasurer), photographer and scuba diver, who will show us some of his beautiful undersea images and discuss the creatures and sights most of us blithely paddle above unawares! This will also be broadcast by Zoom and posted to our SISKA YouTube Channel afterward.

Note: Since BC Covid restrictions are easing, attendees are most welcome to wear masks if they wish, but they are no longer required for our indoor meetings. Also, by that date, proof of vaccination will no longer be required to attend. We will have masks available for people if they wish and will have hand sanitizer available at the various tables and stations. Appropriate social distancing is recommended.

Injury Prevention in Sea Kayaking

by Kirstine Murdoch

Jennie Sutton, a retired Registered Physiotherapist, will provide an interactive workshop on how to prevent injuries while kayaking. It will be held at Willows Beach, Thursday evening, April 21, 6:00 - 8:00.

Must be a SISKA member to register. Class size is limited to 25. Click HERE to register and for more information.

Tarpology Clinic & Knot Demonstration

April 8th, Friday, from 3 pm to 5 pm.

Alan Campbell and Edgar Hulatt will demonstrate two different methods of how to set up a tarp for camping purposes. There will also be a demonstration of knots on display. Other experienced members are invited participate to demonstrate their own camping skills as well. The session will be held at Willows Beach next to the Tea Room. No registration is required and attendees are encouraged to follow sensible Covid safety protocols.

Kayak Gear Sale - Next Monthly Meeting

by Jane Jacek

Time to clean out the gear you no longer use, so others can enjoy them.

Date: Wednesday April 27th ( monthly meeting and AGM) Location: Garth Homer Centre Auditorium, 813 Darwin Ave

Doors will be open at 5:30pm for sellers to set up. Be ready to sell your items yourself. Sale will go from 6:00pm until the meeting begins, which is usually 7pm.

Note - If interested in buying gear and are not bringing gear to sell, please do not show up until after 6:00pm which will allow the sellers time to arrange and set up.

Cheers, Jane

Many thanks to Edgar Hulatt, SISKA Off Water Clinic Coordinator

by Alan Campbell

After several years coordinating off water clinics for SISKA, Edgar Hulatt has decided to retire from that role, but plans to stay involved as a volunteer instructor.

His knowledge, experience and enthusiasm will be missed by his fellow Off Water Coordinators, Lisa Lasagna and Kirstine Murdoch, as well as the rest of us.

One of our most experienced sea kayakers, Edgar is a Paddle Canada Level 4 paddler, an instructor of both on and off water clinics, courses and workshops, and a leader of club paddles. He is also an accomplished sailor and has participated in numerous sailing competitions and ocean journeys. He is one busy guy.

We are very grateful to Edgar for his leadership efforts as a SISKA Off Water Clinic Coordinator and wish him all the best as he pursues other interests.

Thanks also to SISKA members Paul Flynn and Rod Stiebel for agreeing to join Lisa and Kirstine on the Off Water Clinic Coordinator Team! Welcome aboard, guys!

What’s In A Name

by Vic Turkington

The “Nonsuch” In 1666, a syndicate of businessmen and courtiers set out to explore the feasibility of a northern fur trade route. The “Nonsuch” sailed from England in 1668 on a speculative voyage to trade for furs in Hudson Bay.

The ketch Nonsuch was purchased for the exploration and the Royal Navy ketch Eaglet was acquired by arrangement with King Charles II. The master of Nonsuch was Capt. Zachariah Gillam while the Eaglet was commanded by Capt. William Stannard, of the Royal Navy.

The Nonsuch and Eaglet were two-masted sailing vessels with a smaller mizzen mast set aft of the mainmast, to provide support for a small triangular sail. (the ketch design is still popular today with long-distance cruisers, as the mizzen sail provides balance and easier steering.) At 43 tons, the Nonsuch was 53 feet in length and was armed with six naval cannons. Both ships were fitted out for the journey loaded with foodstuffs, rope, clothing, guns, powder, shot, paper, quills, and ink, as well as a cargo of items for trade: kettles, metal tools, needles, beads, tobacco, and blankets. The two vessels sailed down the Thames from Gravesend on route to Hudson Bay. Ten days later, they rounded the Orkney Islands to the northeast of Scotland and headed west. The voyage proved hazardous; some 1,200 nautical miles west of Ireland, the two ships encountered severe storms and heavy seas. Capt. Stannard and the Eaglet were forced to turn back to Plymouth, while the Nonsuch sailed on alone. The little vessel finally anchored in James Bay in Hudson Bay, off the mouth of the Rupert River, in September 1668 - the same place where Henry Hudson had wintered, more than half a century earlier. The crew set up their winter camp, clearing land, building a stockade and a small house. The Nonsuch was hauled ashore and careened on the riverbank. In the spring of 1669, after a long winter, large numbers of Cree arrived to trade prime beaver skins for the kettles, knives and other goods. Finally, in June, the Nonsuch set sail for England with a cargo of beaver furs, arriving back in London in October 1668, much to the delight of the backers and proving that fur trading was not only possible in Hudson Bay but very lucrative. The Hudson Bay Company (HBC) was subsequently formed in 1670 under a charter granted by King Charles 11. It expanded prodigiously over the years and traded throughout much of modern-day Canada. Much later in 1843, the HBC chief factor James Douglas anchored off Clover Point and selected the site of Fort Victoria, which became incorporated as the City of Victoria in 1862. The HBC therefore played a significant role in our Canadian and local history, making the little ship the “Nonsuch”, the little ship that started it all!

(based on an article sent by Alan Campbell)

May 1 Paddle

by Debbie Leach

If you are interested in paddling and creating a Maypole with flagging tape please email director3@siska.ca

Kayaking Klips

by Debbie Leach/Fred Pishalski

Paddling Witty’s Lagoon

Tips from the trips

by Debbie Leach

Intertidal Tip

When it is sunny, use your paddle blade to create shade to get a better look at intertidal life under the surface.

Camp Cookery

by Lynn Baier

Here’s a delicious sounding breakfast that I found on a Facebook page:


Ocean River Sports Store Re-Opening at Oak Bay Marina

by Editor

I recently stopped in at the new store and chatted with Brian and others working to get everything ready. They said they were most likely to open on April 4th or thereabouts. Drop by sometime and check it out!

Be Sure to Explore SISKA’s Amazing Website to Help Get You Out There Safely!

by Alan Campbell

SISKA is very fortunate to have had Dave Ostapovich, “Dave O”, as our Webmaster since the club was formed. A former IT professional, Dave has created and continues to improve our amazing website, designed to help SISKA members enroll in clinics, paddles, and workshops, and to promote safe sea kayaking publicly by sharing paddle planning information. Mike Jackson continues to help Dave with some aspects of the website, and Mike Teachman has recently begun to assist Dave with website improvement projects. Many thanks to Dave and the two Mikes for keeping us organized online! One recent website improvement provides a summary for members of the clinics, paddles, and workshops in which they have registered or are taking a leadership role. Just log in to the website and select Members, List My Paddles and Clinics, to confirm the activities in which you are enrolled. There is so much to explore on our website that a YouTube video has now been posted on the SISKA YouTube Channel taking you through the main features – be sure to check this out and take full advantage of our amazing SISKA website! https://youtu.be/f1jjfNbNv0Q

Trip Reports

After enjoying a SISKA event or paddle, please consider sending a short (100-150 words) summary article.

Safety Tip

by Lynn Baier

Prepare yourself for some anxious moments, even from the comfort of the couch. This Vimeo depicts some very treacherous conditions that could be encountered if paddling in wind against waves.

Wind Against Waves

A little Humour

by Rob Zacharias

BC Marine Trails March Newsletter


To Buy or Sell

For Sale:

SISKA’s Kayak Skills Course Partners

There are some fine discounts available from our kayak skills course partners for SISKA members who sign up for their skills training programs. Have a look HERE

Our partners are:

Related Posts

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