Author: Jo Bossart/ParrySounds.com

Return of the Risley – March 2016

Sitting out on the North Shore Rugged Trail last week enjoying the arrival of dawn I was surprised to see three beacons looking west. I recognized two of them, the beacon at Three Mile point (3 km away), and in the distance Killbear (10 km away), but there was a third between the two of them. Within minutes I was able to confirm that it was the Samuel Risley returning to port at the Parry Sound Coast Guard base for the first time this year. I guess boating season has officially started in the Parry Sound area. That’s the beacon on Killbear Point in the distance.

The Samuel Risley Rounding Three Mile Point – March 19, 2016

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West Parry Sound Area, 2016 VHF Course Dates Announced

A two evening VHF instruction course with examination will be offered May 3rd and 10th, 2016, at Lakeland Long Term Care facility (beside the West Parry Sound District Hospital in Parry Sound).

The complete package with CD covers VHF marine radio  and Digital Selective Calling (DSC). The course will prepare you for the Restricted Operator Certificate (Maritime) and DSC Endorsement exams that will be administered on the second night with temporary licenses issued that evening for people successfully completing the exams.

To legally operate a maritime radio as an individual or business you need this certificate. The Maritime Radio course teaches emergency radio procedures as well as everyday operating techniques.

Register with John Mason in advance so course materials can be ordered.
705.342.1315, or masonj@vianet.ca.

Cost: Active Canadian Power and Sail Squadron members $80. Non-members $90.

Note: Students must come ready to show that they have memorized the Phonetic Alphabet: Alpha, Bravo, Charley… It is available online. Here is a link to get you started.

State of the Sound – March 3, 2016. Not Quite Ready for Boating.

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Upcoming First Aid Courses

A number of first aid courses are being sponsored by White Squall. Now is a good time to get that critical first aid training and certification, or to brush up on your skills. Once the ice is out it will be hard to find the time for all important safety instruction.

Wilderness Advanced First Aid – April 23-26, 2016
Bridge to WFR – April 27-May 1, 2016
Wilderness First Responder April 23 – May 1 (April 27th off)
Wilderness First Aid – May 7-8
Contact the White Squall Paddling Centre at 705/342-5324.

The Big Sound – Mostly Frozen Over

It’s one month past the Winter Solstice and we seem to have finally developed a skim of ice over the Big Sound. (That’s ice, not water.) There still seems to be open water further out when seen from Belvedere Hill. Things will continue to be cold, but it will be many days before people can get their ice huts and sleds out on the Big Sound. The Walleye season ends March 1st, so there may be little incentive to get the huts out, once the ice gets thick enough to be safe. There may be an early start to the boating season.Redwood1890-20160121-_DS72924

New Year, New Look

The last couple months have been a little bit strange around this part of Georgian Bay. We received the expected late November dump of snow, and then it disappeared. Well, that was pretty normal. But then temperatures were supposed to drop, delivering lake effect snow and cooling the Big Sound. So far it has been pretty much warm and overcast. There is some promise of lower temperatures in the coming days, and some snow as well. The big question though is when the Big Sound will freeze over. I don’t doubt it will, but will it freeze enough to allow for ice fishing and snowmobiling? If you can’t boat on it, at least you should be able to walk, ski or sled over it. The Big Sound and the South Channel are major highways in the winter.

If Mother Nature can change her look I figured we could do so as well. The Parry Sound Power and Sail Squadron webpage has been updated with a new template. All of the same information is here, and the posts are a little more attractive in my opinion. You just need to scroll to the bottom of the page if you are looking for the archives, upcoming events, or want to search the site.

Christmas Day, Looking Towards Parry Sound

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JB – Communications Officer

Can You Give Me a Tow?

It has been a bit strange in this section of Georgian Bay so far in December. The temperatures are well above average, and above freezing, which means that some boats have been seen out on the Big Sound. Nonetheless, everbody I know has their boat out of the water and wonders when the big freeze will arrive.

In the meantime it’s interesting to check out the much bigger world of boats and shipping. This week we have a link to a posting with video and some description of a Russian tug attempting to tow the Russian Navy’s only aircraft carrier. It’s worth a look just to remind ourselves how ‘tame’ things are in Georgian Bay. Well, most of the time anyways.

Russian Tug 2015-12

JB – Communications Officer

Boating Essentials Starting January 2015

Boating Essentials is the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron course that builds on the basic knowledge required for the Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) and takes you to the next level in your boating education. Topics in this course include navigation, conning, plotting, course and local charting, GPS, anchoring, lines and ropes. The course is taught by qualified local instructors who have considerable knowledge and experience boating in and around Georgian Bay.

You receive a complimentary one-year Regular Membership in Power Squadron upon completion of the Boating Essentials course. Note: Boaters who do not currently have their PCOC may make arrangements with the instructor.

The course will be held one evening a week at the Parry Sound campus of Canadore College.

Course cost: $250.00 Students should register at Canadore Parry Sound for $165.00, seniors $144.70 The course materials costs, paid on the first night will bring the cost up to $250.00

Register by calling 705.746.9222, or through online at this link at Canadore College.