Successful end to search for kayakers along the Island river

Father and son located tired and cold, but otherwise OK

Cowichan and Ladysmith Search & Rescue members teamed up successfully Sunday evening and into early Monday morning to locate two kayakers who had lost their way after departing from the Chemainus River.

Cowichan SAR president Jamie Tudway-Cains said about a dozen Cowichan members started at Hillcrest where the kayakers’ vehicle was parked while Ladysmith deployed about seven members to Mount Sicker Road and they worked toward the middle to find the father and son, who had earlier left a group of experienced whitewater kayakers that included five others.

“They pulled out after paddling one-third of the route,” Tudway-Cains indicated.

The SAR groups were called into action around 7:30 p.m. and spent five hours before tracking them down.

“We found the subjects and walked them out and were done by three in the morning,” Tudway-Cains said.

“This time of year it helped us because of the snow. We were able to follow them because of their footsteps.”

The subjects were cold and tired, but otherwise OK.

“They had their dry suits on, which is good,” Tudway-Cains noted.

Normally, people are told to stay put, but the two thought they knew their way out and kept moving.

“They couldn’t find their way out so they started following the river down,” Tudway-Cains pointed out.

The search did not involve having to go into the water for SAR.

“That night it was just land,” Tudway-Cains confirmed. “With the flow of the river and dark, we would not have put our members in.”

It turned out to be a busy day for Cowichan SAR. During training Sunday, the group was called out to assist the RCMP in Mill Bay. As the team was demobilizing, the call came out to locate the two kayakers who had exited the Chemainus River after losing a kayak and had not been in contact with the remaining paddlers.

Even thought SAR serves such an important role in the Cowichan Valley, the Cowichan group is still seeking a permanent location to set up its gear and welcomes any input from the public about a site.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Cumberland keeps pushing for groundwater protection

Council will raise issue with Province again through Union of BC Municipalities

Annual music event in Comox Valley celebrates online instead

Vancouver Island MusicFest holds virtual celebration set for July 10

Cumberland wants more done to stop drug deaths

Motions include writing Dr. Bonnie Henry, holding naloxone workshop

Courtenay theatre gets support for livestream ‘hybrid’ shows this year

Island Coastal Economic Trust funds help Sid Williams Theatre with infrastructure, training

Military police training in Comox Valley

Latest quarterly session for training is July 6-8

B.C. accommodators need phone lines to light up as in-province travel given green light

Travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic have decimated the tourism and hospitality industries

300 Cache Creek residents on evacuation alert due to flood risk as river rises

Heavy rainfall on Canada Day has river rising steadily, threatening 175 properties

PHOTOS: GP Vanier Grad

Some submitted photos from the 2020 grad celebrations at GP Vanier in Courtenay

First glimpse of Canada’s true COVID-19 infection rate expected mid-July

At least 105,000 Canadians have tested positive for COVID-19 since the coronavirus was identified

Police ramp up efforts to get impaired drivers off B.C. roads this summer

July is dedicated to the Summer CounterAttack Impaired Driving Campaign

Migrant workers stage multi-city action for full status amid COVID-19 risks

‘COVID-19 has exacerbated an existing crisis’

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Most Read