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Volume XXXVII      Number 9       November 2019
Commander’s Log
Ahoy Members and Friends!
Now that Halloween has come and gone, we are on the way to Christmas. I know, I sound like the many store ads and web sites, as soon as Ghosts and goblins have gone we start talking about Christmas, but before that please join us on Monday, November 18th at the False Creek Yacht Club for the presentation by Captain Ken Burton as he takes us through Northwest Passage. Of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t give you an early warning of the Christmas potluck. Our Program Officer Brian Kennedy is already planning for the Christmas potluck set for Monday, December 9th. You'll find more information in Brian’s report and details on many of our upcoming events.

I had the pleasure of attending the CPS-EPC Conference held in Victoria October 15 -20th. Front and centre was the topic of the new website. It was reported that the new site would be operational on November 25th, 2019. Not that I’m a skeptic, but let's hope that this time National has all their ducks in line and the new site becomes operational. Just to be sure, you should have a copy of all your log-in information available, as I’ve heard the CPS site itself maybe down for as much as two weeks. Hopefully that’s not the case but be prepared.

In addition to the emphasis on new web site at the Conference, it became self-evident that in the near future you will see an increased emphasis on the environmental aspect of boating, as the environment is becoming a focus with CPS as it evolves over time in the coming years. As an example, our Environmental Officer, Bill Blancard, has been very active in organizing “See a Blow-Go Slow” signs at several marinas around Vancouver, which helps to keep us in the public eye. Each of these signs has our Squadron listed as a sponsor. You’ll find an example of these signs below.

CPS is requesting that each Squadron collect used life jackets that are Transport Canada approved and in good condition, so if you have any that you might like to donate to this program stay tuned for more details. The purpose of collecting these is to benefit Operation Life Jacket, which a program that was developed by the Canadian Ranger foundation and the Canadian Safe Boating Council to improve boating safety in Northern Canadian First Nations. Life jackets in these areas are in short supply and very expensive when available and can cost in excess of $100 each.

There were two award presentations made during the Conference to two of the Squadrons members; those were to John Steede for “Officer of the Year” Western Region and a “Commanders Citation” to Peter Girling. To both of you Gentlemen, we appreciate your efforts and long-term commitment to the Squadron.

We have the student cruise on November 16th for our students; as before this cruise is always a great event and is worthwhile as a learning experience for our students, watch for pictures and details in next month’s Masthead.

I suspect by now you’ve probably figured out that I will sometimes have a look at the occasional YouTube video; it’s always easy to find those with the recreational boater having problems but just to show that even the “professionals” can run into troubles this is an interesting scenario between a tug and a cruise ship in San Francisco.

And for something entirely different this is one of the local boat launch ramps in Alaska, they sure do it in an unusual style here.

And here’s an admirable docking job in very windy conditions, although the opening sequence sure looks like there is a disaster unfolding. 

I would be remiss if I didn’t express my appreciation and thanks to the many Squadron members who, while they might not be at many of our events, continue their membership every year, without you we would not be as good as we are as a Squadron, one that is able to offer so much to so many, thank you for your continuing support.

I hope to see many of you at our November 18th event as Captain Ken gives a most interesting presentation.


Bill Botham
Commander, Vancouver Squadron 

November Squadron Night

Monday, November 18, 2019 at the False Creek Yacht Club

You always wanted to cruise the Northwest Passage and sail around North America? Now you can do it vicariously at our next meeting! Join Ken Burton, Captain of the St Roch II, the RCMP boat that circumnavigated North America in 2000. He will provide all the info you want about travelling in the Arctic and what is happening up there right now. He has extensive experience in Canada’s Arctic as a boater, an RCMP officer and an explorer. Author of ”Canada’s Arctic: A Guide to Adventure Through the Northwest Passage”. This promises to be a very interesting night.

Please come and enjoy another relaxing evening with other Squadron Members and guests. See you on the 18th!
      Photo credit: Jeff Topham

Save the date for our upcoming Squadron events!

December 9, 2019: Potluck and a speaker. Never worry about getting lost again! Come on out to December’s meeting and learn all about the latest charts, how to use them, what the future holds in charting and more. Mark LeBlanc, Manager Navigation Products & Services, Canadian Hydrographic Service Pacific Region, will bring us up to date on everything to do with charts in his usual very entertaining way. Mark will begin his talk right after our potluck. Join us a bit earlier for this Squadron Night and bring a dish to share.

January 20, 2020: One of the biggest topics about local waterways these days is whales. Come and join Jackie Hildering of the Marine Education and Research Society talk to us about Humpback, Minke and Killer Whales off BC’s coast. Jackie is a scientist devoted to research education and conservation of marine ecosystems. We probably could not get a more relevant topic for today’s boaters and everyone concerned about the ocean. Jackie also has the extra special duty of being on the CPSS National Environmental Committee so we can also get up to the date info on that. 

All meetings, except December’s potluck, start at 19:00 with doors and bar open with Squadron announcements and speaker presentations starting at 19:30. The December potluck starts at 18:45. See you there!

Admission is $5 at the door
Cash bar is available for your enjoyment
Boating Courses Starting Soon

Don't miss your chance to register for our winter courses - space is limited!  

Boating 1 (Boating Basics/PCOC) - November 14 to December 5, 2019 More information 
Last chance to register!

Maritime Radio - November 9, 2019 - More information Last chance to register!

Boat and Engine Maintenance - January 21 to April 7, 2020 (Tuesday evenings) More information

Boating 2 and 3 Combined - January 21 to April 21, 2020 (Tuesday evenings) More information

Boating 4 – Near Shore Marine Navigation Level 1 - January 21 to April 14, 2020 (Tuesday evenings) More information

Maritime Radio - February 8, 2020 - More information

See more courses and dates here.
Marine Weather

Attention Boaters! For marine weather warnings, watches or advisories, please check, call a marine forecaster (anytime & free) at 1-844-505-2525, access recorded marine weather at 604-664-9010 or subscribe to updates on Twitter @ECCCWeatherBC
October Squadron Night Review

We had a very informative session with Jason Krott, Manager Marine Operations and Fleet with the Vancouver Port Authority. The division he looks after is the patrol and enforcement side of running the Port. He gave us a great talk on how that division operates sprinkled with a few good stories to round out the evening. 

His talk, titled “Patrolling the Port”, told us how his division looks after the security and boating rules on the water to ensure our Port operates smoothly. He told us about the operation of the Patrol boats that we see all the time and wonder how they fit into the overall operation of the port and assist in moving freighters around and making sure people don’t get in the way. The Port is a major economic driver for not use Vancouver but all of Canada. Jason and his staff have to make sure the freighters and other craft involved in the port can move about safely and freely. This includes among many other tasks coordinating activities with several marine Police Forces, the Coast Guard, The RCMP, The CBSA and the public to name a few. We heard a few interesting stories about small boats drifting in the First Narrows, crossing in front of freighters and generally clogging the navigation routes of vessels that should have safe access to our Port. It was encouraging to hear that others feel that boat rental companies currently have too free a hand in who the customers are.

It was also very enjoyable to hear about the charity work the boat crews do and especially comforting to know how well qualified all the staff is. In fact, the Port has a very familiar problem in that a lot of the staff are getting older and they need new employees. Jason mentioned they are currently hiring.

The evening ended with a lot of challenging questions and great story about a cow. You will have to find someone who was at the meeting to hear the story!

Jason kept us interested all evening and worked in a lot of info that affects us as we enjoy our boats in The Port of Vancouver. Best news - he wants to come back next year!
We’ll see you on November 18th for our next Squadron Night!
Brian Kennedy - Programs Officer

(Photo credit: Dennis Steeves)
Squadron Bridge (2019-2020)

Commander Bill Botham    
Executive Officer
Elizabeth Zygmunt
Educational Officer (Boating, PCOC) John Steede    
Assistant Educational Officer
Peter Girling    
Assistant Educational Officer (Radio)
Peter Bennett    
Charles Tai    
Financial Officer
Les Hausch    
Membership Officer
Twyla Graeme    
Programs Officer
Brian Kennedy    
Environmental Officer
Bill Blancard    
Communications Officer
Sabine Just    
Newsletter Editor
Sabine Just    
Port Captain
Walter Gfeller    
Supply Officer (Regalia)
Don Zarowny    
Webmaster/IT Officer
Peter Bennett    
Dennis Steeves    
Cruise Coordinator
Dave Atchison    
Audit Review Committee Chair
Jeff Booth    
Past Commander
Roger Middleton


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