The Stuart Lake Sailing Club had some good news back in July, when a 15’ Sea Spray catamaran was donated to the club by a local couple who wanted to see it used.
“It’s mostly been kids on the catamaran this summer, playing around,” says Paul Inden of the SLSC. “That’s the wonderful thing about sailing: it’s lots of fun.” The catamaran is ideal for those just learning how to sail, as it’s easy to steer and easy to bring back up if it tips over, and has already convinced one greade 12 student to start sailing by herself.
The good news about the catamaran was set against the bad news that the sailing camp planned for the summer didn’t get enough registrants, and had to be cancelled. “B.C. Sailing puts the camps on, and they need 12 to 15 registrants aged 6–15 years old. We only had five register.” Still, Inden points out that there are 10 kids—most of whom have their own boats—who are part of the club. One 16-year-old went to Sidney, B.C. this summer and completed CANsail levels 1, 2, and 3. “He has one more level to complete, and then could come back here and instruct at the sailing club if he wanted to.”
The club also helps sponsor someone aged 13–25 to attend a SALTS (Sail and Life Training Society) trip aboard a traditional “tall ship”. Several 10-day trips are held each summer, with those aboard crewing the ship around Vancouver Island.
Inden stresses that the SLSC is a year-round group, however. “The summer is busier, but we have two ice-sailing boats that are available to people who want to use them. Ice sailing is fast, and you need good conditions: no snow and black ice.” While most people will probably give up sailing for the year in late September, Inden says he’ll keep going until the ice comes. “When the warm lake water hits the cold morning air and pumps up steam in October and November, the lake is really pretty with the fog on it.”
For more information about the Stuart Lake Sailing Club, call Paul at (250) 996-8226.