BC Ferries deckhands Travis Young (left) and Todd Nickless sit on the back an ice-covered semi-truck aboard the Nimpkish en route from Bella Bella to Bella Coola on Saturday evening. (Photo submitted)

PHOTO: Sheet of ice covers BC Ferries boat during stormy weekend sail

Frozen vessel thawing in the Bella Coola harbour

A BC Ferries vessel and some of its cargo are thawing on the central coast after quite a night at sea.

“It was like something out of the movies,” said deckhand Travis Young of how the sea spray froze directly onto the Nimpkish as it sailed from Bella Bella to Bella Coola on Saturday.

“Waves were freezing all over the boat, it was building and building,” Young told Black Press Media Monday. “When you are training, you take courses and see things about de-icing, but I never thought I’d see it on the central coast.”

According to Environment Canada, the Bella Coola area received temperatures as low as -17.5 C and wind gusts up to 52 kilometres an hour on Saturday. Gusts were up to 81 kilometres an hour the next day.

READ MORE: Extreme cold warning issues for B.C. Interior

“It started freezing about three hours out of Bella Bella,” Young said. “We made it to Bella Coola about 1:30 in the morning, which was later than usual. We were fighting a huge headwind on the Dean Channel and going slower than usual.”

The Nimpkish always has a captain, a mate and two deckhands on board with two people on the bridge at all times, Young said.

On Saturday, there were one passenger vehicle and seven passengers, and moving around the boat became increasingly dangerous.

“At one point, there was a foot thick of icy slush on the deck,” Young added. “We’d tell people when we thought it was safe to go to the washroom or tell them to sit down.”

Ice was also forming on the windshield of the bridge. When it was time to dock in Bella Coola, Young and the other deckhand, Todd Nickless, were scraping off the ice so the captain could see.

“The lines were all frozen when we were tying up at the dock too, but we got her done,” Young said.

Originally from Maple Ridge, Young has worked as a deckhand on the Nimpkish for two years. He moved to Bella Coola five years ago, following his brother who had moved there for an affordable lifestyle.

As for his first ice adventure, Young said it was neat to be part of it. “Our highest concern was safety,” he said.

The central coast has seen strong winds in recent days and is still under an Arctic outflow warning.



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Icy slush was building on the deck of the Nimpkish Saturday evening at it sailed from Bella Bella to Bella Coola. (Photo submitted)

The BC Ferries’ Nimpkish boat thawing at the Government Wharf in Bella Coola. (Photo submitted)

Just Posted

What’s Up: Things to see and do on Family Day

There’s plenty of fun to be had across the West Kootenay this coming long weekend!

Call a foul on cancer with the Pink Whistle Campaign

Local basketball referees are raising money for cancer research

Man found dead identified as Andreas Pittinger

Pittinger was known locally for hosting a radio show

Biologists discover another female calf in depleted South Purcell Mountain Caribou herd

Calf will be moved to Revelstoke maternity pens, then released

Man seriously hurt after police shooting near Nelson

Incident has been reported to provincial police watchdog

‘Just like Iron Man’: Calgary surgeon undergoes experimental spinal surgery

Dr. Richi Gill was in a freak accident on a boogie board during a family vacation in Hawaii

Deported B.C. man who came to Canada as a baby granted chance at return

Lee Van Heest was deported to the Netherlands in 2017

A Mother’s Wish: Ryan Shtuka’s mother wants her son to be ‘forever known’

‍‍‍‍‍“Let me tell you a story …. it all began with a boy named Ryan”

Sex abuse survivors to meet with Vatican summit organizers

Pope Francis has urged participants to meet with abuse victims before they came to Rome

Ex-FBI official: ‘Crime may have been committed’ by Trump

Andrew McCabe said FBI had good reason to open a counterintelligence investigation into whether Trump was in league with Russia

B.C. athlete takes home gold in freestyle aerials at Canada Games

Brayden Kuroda won the event with a combined score of 121.65.

Cabinet likely to extend deadline to reconsider Trans Mountain pipeline

New round of consultations with Indigenous communities is coming

Most Read