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

Just Posted

Sidney part of a region that suffers ‘chronic shortage’ of daycare spaces

Consultants find that Sidney needs 233 new spaces to meet the current demand for daycare

HMCS Victoria popping up as training sessions underway

MARPAC says plume of smoke normal for recharging submarine

Friday night tickets affect Saturday behaviour at the University of Victoria

Saanich police see direct response after issuing several $230 fines

Thieves harvest from 11 unlocked cars in Oak bay

Looting unlocked cars called ‘farming,’ says deputy chief

West Shore RCMP seeks video footage after homeowner interrupts Colwood break and enter

Police were called to 600-block of Stornoway Drive late Sunday

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

POLL: Do you plan on allowing your children to go trick or treating this year?

This popular annual social time will look quite different this year due to COVID-19

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

COVID-19 liquor, music rules extended with fines

‘Nightclubs must cease operating as nightclubs’

Carole James heads ‘caretaker’ B.C. government

James is among 15 MLAs retiring at the end of their current term

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

Most Read