The Beacon

Volume 29 Number 6 July-August 1999

The Official Newsletter of the Saanich Peninsula Squadron


Commander Cdr Ken Reeves 655-3602  
Past Commander P/Cdr Helen Louwerse 544-4358
Executive Officer Lt/Cdr Greg Nutt 656-4212 nutz@
Training Officer Lt/Cdr David Stansfield 655-4619  
Assistant Training Officer 1st Lt Jim Dawson 658-8204
Boat Pro Officer 1st Lt Barbara Bond 384-4268
Training Aids Officer 1st Lt David Teece 658-0299
Treasurer 1st Lt Ray Scott 656-4828
Secretary 1st Lt Paulette Nutt 656-4212
Membership Officer 1st Lt Carol Sidwell 656-4590
Supply Officer 1st Lt Chris Sterling 656-7927  
Editor, Beacon 1st Lt Diana McBratney 656-4590
Publisher, Beacon 1st Lt Agnes Simpson 652-1291
Communications Officer 1st Lt Tamara Nutt 889-1506
Marep Officer 1st Lt Bob Richardson 544-1577
Computer Officer 1st Lt Colin Gallins 656-4904
P.R. & Entertainment Officer 1st Lt Cliff Kachaluba 652-2359
Social Cruise Captain 1st Lt Barry Levi 477-3702
Student Cruise Captain 1st Lt Martin Pepper pgr388-1727
Port Captain 1st Lt Hank Louwerse 544-4358
Environment Officer 1st Lt Leslie Head 655-4656
Archivist P/Cdr Giles Perodeau 656-4525  
Auditor ***** Brenna Litwack 656-0084
********************** ****** ************** ********** ********************

Meetings of the Bridge will be held on the third Thursday of each month at 1930 in the Sidney North Saanich Yacht Club, except July and December. All members welcome to attend. Please contact the Editor at 656-4590 or if you have any comments on the material contained in this publication. Information, advertisement requests and articles for publication in The Beacon should be in the hands of the Editor as early as possible each month. The material in this publication is also published on the Squadron website at

Page 2

Commander's Comments

I now have two Bridge meetings under my belt, and it has become quite evident to me that we have an extremely strong group of people who have volunteered their time to guide and strengthen our Squadron during the next year.

I used the word "volunteers" because it is the volunteers who donate their time and energy to make things "happen" from boating courses of various kinds, to Bridge meetings, working on the July 1st Parade in Sidney, the Port Sidney Boat Show, and many other activities which make our Squadron the best (if not the biggest) on the Island.

We have 273 members, of whom about 20% regularly volunteer their time for our myriad activities.

My message to the other 80% of our membership -- why not try volunteering even just a few hours a month or even a year. You'll find that the activities are actually fun, the people volunteering alongside you interesting and friendly.

Just 20 hours per year will get you a neat CPS Certificate signed by the National Commander.

So why not become a "doer" and volunteer those 20 -- or more -- hours annually. When you get a phone call in the near future from a volunteer caller -- don't be shy -- say YES.

Ken Reeves, Commander

The smallest deed is better than the greatest intention.


Page 3

Coming Events

Jul. 1 Sidney Days Parade. The Squadron is planning to enter a boat (on a trailer towed by a truck) again this year. Anyone who would like to help decorate or even just walk in the parade, please contact Helen Louwerse at 544-4358.

Jul. 2-4 North Island District Rendezvous at Transfer Beach, Ladysmith.


Jul. 17 Cruise to Ganges Harbour where we will moor at Saltspring Marina and take in the sites, sounds and stores of Ganges. For information and reservations contact our Social Cruise Captain, Barry Levi, at 477-3702.

Aug. 7 Cruise to Genoa Bay for fun and games. For information and reservations contact Barry Levi at 477-3702.

Aug. 13-15 2nd Annual Vancouver Island South District Gathering at Otter Bay, North Pender Island. Come along and among other things find yourselves served breakfast by members of the Bridge have a swim in the pool golf 'n other games pot luck dinners all good stuff and you can still catch the Ferry back home if you don't bring your own boat. Registration form in last month's Beacon.

Aug. 19 Bridge meeting at Sidney North Saanich Yacht Club, 1930. All members are welcome to attend. Informal discussions follow in the Club.

Aug. 21 Cruise to Otter Bay, North Pender Island for our Squadron Annual Golf Tournament. For information and reservations contact our Social Cruise Captain, Barry Levi at 477-3702.

Sep. 4 Cruise to Montague Harbour, Galiano Island for a raft-up. For information and reservations contact Barry Levi at 477-3702. OK to stay over the 5th if you wish.

Sep. 7 Boating Course starts at 1815 at Parklands School.

Page 4

Membership News

A welcome is extended to the following new members:

Evelyn Tennant -- transferring from Seymour Sqn

John McKay -- transferring from Sur-Del Sqn

Mark Dickinson, Darryl and Charmaine Van Tine -- rejoining after an absence from the Squadron

John Blomfield, Jamie Bowser, Donald Goddard, Paul Ouelette and Richard Manning -- having graduated from the most recent Boating Course.

Doug Goodwin (Boating Instructor) sends his best wishes from the Mediterranean where he is currently relaxing before starting out on the next leg of his journey (from the south seas to Australia, Malasia, through the Suez and on to the Panama before heading home).

Training News

This year, in addition to our Sqn Trg Officer, David Stansfield, along with his staff of Jim Dawson, Asst. Trg Officer, and Dave Teece, Trg Aids Officer, we have Barbara Bond joining the Training Department as BoatPro Officer.

STO David Stansfield reports that plans are underway to offer the Boating Course with instructor Doug Mitchell in the fall. Start date is Tuesday the 7th of September -- 1815 to 2200; remaining classes 1900 to 2200; Parklands School; Proctors will be Sita Pallay, Jim Dawson, Dave Teece and Paulette Nutt. Cost is $160. Course will run until the 14th of Dec. If you have friends interested, have them call David Stansfield at 655-4619. A second course will begin 11 Jan 2000.

It is also hoped that we will offer Piloting, Marine Maintenance and Weather. More info later, but if you are interested, call David now and let him know.

Brentwood Sqn will be offering the following courses in the fall: Marine Maintenance (Tuesdays 21 Sep to Oct 99), Piloting (Mondays 20 Sep to Dec 99) and Advanced Piloting (Tuesdays 14 Sep to Dec 99). If any of these times work out better for you and/or you want more information, call Brentwood's STO, Linda Larsson, at 656-9921.

Page 5

Visit to Kelowna Sqn

by Helen Louwerse

What a weekend! Bob & Ruth Jones and Hank and I travelled together to Kelowna with plans to golf, cruise and visit some local wineries. After three snow storms en route, we arrived in Kelowna to a weekend of idyllic weather. Bill and Gay Miller joined us for the Kelowna Sqn's "Poker Run" on Saturday. The Poker Run was fun and I would like to see our Squadron fit it in one day this summer. After 5 hours of speeding around the lake we were treated to a fine meal followed by dancing at the Yacht Club. The Kelowna Sqn would love to return to our area for another cruise sometime in early September. Hopefully we can accommodate them. We did golf, cruise and tour a winery. Golf was expensive, cruising was fast and the wine tasty.

Cruise to Maple Bay

by Barry Levi

What a difference a few weeks makes! In April when we cruised to Maple Bay it rained. and the Squadron's boats were spread out all over the marina. On May 29th we again cruised to Maple Bay, but this time the weather was perfect. We also had the pleasure of having all the boats grouped together on the same dock, which made socializing easier.

The "event" for this cruise was a bocce tournament. This took place on the nice level lawn area behind the gazebo. The tournament was won by newcomers to our cruises, Pally & Sita Pillay. The bocce was followed by a happy hour held in the gazebo.

This cruise was originally scheduled for June 5th but was re-scheduled on short notice to May 29th. Because of the short notice, I had suggested we eat at the restaurant instead of our usual potluck. This was not to be. The gang insisted we do a potluck, and produced an amazing variety of great dishes for the entire group's eating pleasure. The potluck dinner was held on the dock between the boats. The dock was very narrow, so we had to eat in single file. It was great.

We again had a scrambled word puzzle for everyone to figure out. This was won by the Clarkes. All in all it was a very nice weekend. As always it's over too soon.

My thanks go out to the following participants who made it so enjoyable:

Ken & Joan Clarke (LEGASEA) Clive & Georgina Farmer (SILVER BAR II)

Stephen & Marjorie Denroche (GAVIA) Barry & Jackie Levi (SHOWTIME)

Bob Parkinson & Mo Robertson (DORIAN I) Eric & Pat Fisher (LORELEI)

Pally & Sita Pillay (ODESSA) Ken & Mary Reeves (SEA MOGGY)

Page 6

Nav Aids Warning

The following extracts from the Marine Accident Reporting Scheme (MARS) report by the US NSTB into the grounding of the cruise ship ROYAL MAJESTY should be a warning to all navigators of the dangers of relying on one source of information. The ship went aground whilst on a cruise from St. George, Bermuda to Boston, USA with over 1,000 passengers on board. The GPS had reverted to DR Mode after an antenna cable had parted and was thus not giving an accurate fix. In spite of being in coastal waters, the watch officers placed over-reliance on the information given to them by the automated features of the integrated bridge system. This incident occurred over several days and many watch changes, yet no watch officer including the Master detected the GPS failure.

A CPS colleague comments: "I keep seeing many recreational boaters committing the same sort of lapses in judgement. Recently one of my customers complained that his chart plotter was creating errors when he planned a route. To illustrate he showed me exactly what he was doing. The idea was to plot a route from his marina in the Honey Harbour area up along the small craft route towards the North Channel in Georgian Bay.

This route follows a torturous trail in among thousands of rocks, islets, and islands. The safe channel is often only about fifty feet wide and has a limiting depth of two meters. I mention this only because many of you are not familiar with Georgian Bay geography. The waters adjacent to the safe channel is littered with pinnacle rocks hidden just under the surface of the water. (Another boater recently ripped the props, shafts and rudders off his boat in the same waters, as a result of being out of position by a very small margin.)

The reason for plotting this route was so that the autopilot could drive the boat!

As politely as I could I tried to point out that this was NOT RECOMMENDED!

The technical problem was due to a software glitch in his software. The solution would not be available before this customer was leaving on his summer holiday. Informed of this the customer declared it a disaster that would cancel his vacation trip. I asked why since he had the necessary paper charts, knew the route and the GPS was still functional even though it wouldn't drive the autopilot to follow the route. Continued on page 7

Page 7

Nav Aids Warning (concluded from page 6)

Apparently, the failure of one piece of equipment undermined the confidence of the boater so much that he felt he could not risk taking the trip. Such over reliance and blind faith in any one source of navigational aid is handicap."


In addition to the discounts available to CPS members arranged by National HQ and which we have discussed in previous issued of the Beacon, there are several Saanich Peninsula firms, and even some Victoria businesses, that will give discounts to Squadron members. On record as offering such a discount (usually about 10%) are the following:

AllBay Marine Supply, one of our advertisers --

2204 Harbour Rd. at Resthaven in Sidney

The Boathouse Marine Supply, another of our advertisers --

2379 Bevan Ave. in Sidney

The Compass Rose Nautical Bookstore, also one of our advertisers, and owned by

Squadron members Ann Tighe and Terry Patten --

9587 - 4th St. in Sidney

Bond Bonds Bakery, preservative and additive free bakery owned by our BoatPro

Officer, Barbara Bond --

1010 Blanshard St. in Victoria

Cotton Club (women's clothing and accessories) --

760 Broughton St. in Victoria

We would suggest that if you are dealing with other of our marine advertisers, you might ask -- in fact we would suggest you ask at any marine supplier as some members have found discounts available for CPS members at many places. If you find dealers on the Peninsula or Greater Victoria area who will go on record as offering a discount, please let your Editor know so that we can pass the information along.

And tell our advertisers you saw their ad in The Beacon!