The use of a jet ski is creatively used at the big pool area of the river

The use of a jet ski is creatively used at the big pool area of the river

4th Annual Cowichan River clean-up: Two-day event from weir to the bay

There is no time like the present to help keep the Cowichan River clean and pristine for all to enjoy.

There is no time like the present to help keep the Cowichan River clean and pristine for all to enjoy.

The Cowichan Lake and River Stewards Fourth Annual Cowichan River Cleanup is fast approaching. Starting on Saturday, August 25, CLRSS members will be accepting the help of volunteers (that means you) to clean all of the garbage from in and around the Cowichan River, starting at the weir and going right to Cowichan Bay, where the river dumps into the ocean.

“I’m actually fired up about this year,” said CLRSS president Gerald Thom. “We’re doing from the weir all the way down to the bay, over two days. The Saturday event here at Lake Cowichan, which will get us down to as far as Sandy Pools [in Sahtlam] and then the next day we’re cooperating with Cowichan Tribes and the Cowichan Water Board to do from Sandy Pools to the estuary, which is really cool because it’s never been done before.”

Registration to volunteer for the cleanup begins on Saturday at 9 a.m. at the Lake Cowichan Town Hall and will include a free continental breakfast. Organizers have also arranged for prizes for all volunteers, with items donated by local businesses, and the day will wrap up at 2 p.m. with a free barbeque.

Mountain Man Services is once again providing trucks to haul away the collected garbage, but CLRSS treasurer, Lois Atchison, who is also one of the event organizers, says that those who bring along extra trucks and/or boats to help out will not be turned away.

“And CVRD provides us with free tipping at Meades Creek,” said Thom. “So we usually pull out in excess of a ton, believe it or not. It’s sad, but it’s getting way better than it was when we first started.”

Volunteers are divided into teams and given designated sections of the river to clean up.

“We have team leaders who have specific sections of the river, and they register the people and take them out and make sure that they’re safe and equipped,” said Thom.

Organizers provide all equipment other than footwear and swimwear.

“It’s not just for swimmers,” said Thom. “There’s jobs for people on the shore too. But if people do have a tube, or mask and snorkel, bring it along. It’s always difficult to gear up everybody.”

Thom says that the problem has shuffled from the section between the weir and Little Beach to the Skutz Falls area.

“The garbage down there, it’s so hard to get out,” said Thom. “Because it’s canyon, so we’re going to have a hell of a time trying to get it out.”

Don Barrie from Warm Rapids Inn will be helping out with this section of the river. Barrie has swift water training and will be working with a small group of volunteers.

“Without him we couldn’t even do that section,” said Thom. “It’s too dangerous.”

The Nanaimo dive club is also a key part of the cleanup, says Thom.

“They send divers up every year to do the bottom of the big pool, because no word of a lie, there is feet thick of glass bottles down there.”

Thom says these bottles are still around from when boat houses existed in the area.

“Every year we bring up boat loads of antique glass bottles. And now we’re fishing them back out 100 years later.”

There is no pre-registration required to be part of the cleanup, all you have to do is show up at 9 a.m. on the Saturday and be ready to participate in whatever way you feel comfortable.

All children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult, but all age groups are encouraged to participate.

Gloves and appropriate footwear are a must and are not provided.

For more information go to cowichan-lake-stewards.ca, or phone Atchison at 250-749-3055, or Thom at 250-749-7203.

 

Just Posted

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Cowichan Bay man’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

Threads N Tails owner Lee-Ann Burke’s pet clothing has been featured on the cover of the June/July issue of Pet Connection Magazine. (Submitted)
Lake Cowichan business featured on magazine cover

Lee-Ann Burke hopes the extra publicity will increase sales

North Cowichan’s senior environment specialist Dr. Dave Preikshot (pictured) said there’s a wide spectrum of views on carbon credits. (File photo)
Carbon credits expected to be part of discussions around forest reserve

North Cowichan acknowledges wide range of views on issue

Blue Moon Marquee from Duncan will be featured at the 2021 TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival on June 28. (Submitted)
Blue Moon Marquee to play Vancouver Jazz Festival

What’s coming up in the A&E scene

Sonia Furstenau, MLA
Proposed Health Professions Act would eliminate barriers, guide regulations

Is your doctor a member of good standing with the BC College… Continue reading

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Gabriola Island artist Sheila Norgate is promoting the Digital Innovation Group’s art impact survey. (File photo)
Vancouver Island artists get behind regional arts impact study

Artists urged to use their stature to help put arts and culture super-region on the map

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

Neighbours fight a small late-night bush fire with garden hoses and shovels in Cinnabar Valley on June 5. They couldn’t get help from local fire services because the fire was located in an area under B.C. Wildfire Services jurisdiction. (Photo courtesy Muriel Wells)
Neighbours on edge of Nanaimo city limits left to put out bush fire themselves

Cinnabar Valley residents tackle fire with hoses and buckets for two and a half hours

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Creative handmade signs abound at the June 13 Tofino rally for old growth trees. (Nora O’Malley photo)
VIDEO: Tofino stands in solidarity for Fairy Creek Blockades

Over 150 supporters attend rally hosted by Friends of Clayoquot Sound

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

Most Read