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48-foot kayak is moved for first time in 4 decades

Paddlers propel a huge kayak — 48 feet long and weighing 800 lb. — owned by George Dyson (above right) in the waters of Belcarra on Friday. The kayak was towed to Bellingham. - SUBMITTED PHOTOS
Paddlers propel a huge kayak — 48 feet long and weighing 800 lb. — owned by George Dyson (above right) in the waters of Belcarra on Friday. The kayak was towed to Bellingham.
— image credit: SUBMITTED PHOTOS

A 48-foot, 800-lb. kayak that has sat next to the historic Bole House in Belcarra since 1976 was moved Friday to a new home in Bellingham.

Jo Ledingham, a resident of one of seven cabins in the area that Metro Vancouver plans to demolish, said that with nobody living in the area, there are fears the vessel could be damaged.

“If the cottages are under threat, it’s foolish to leave the boat here,” she said. “It would be vandalized.”

Seeing the vessel towed away on Friday brought tears to Ledingham’s eyes, she said. The Belcarra resident, who has lived along the shoreline since the 1970s, said the kayak, which was built by a local man named George Dyson, was a part of the area’s history.

“Kayakers from all over the place would go past to see it,” she said. “It seems to me to be a huge failure to recognize our history.”

Dyson, who lived in the Bole House during the 1970s, moved to Bellingham several years ago. On Friday, he brought his sailboat up from the U.S. to tow the behemoth vessel to its new home.

A camera crew was on hand to film the launch. Ledingham said the director is a local filmmaker who is interested in the cabin residents’ battle with Metro Vancouver to keep their cabins.

Ledingham and the resident of the six other cabins were told to leave their homes by June 30. A demolition date has yet to be scheduled but Metro Vancouver intends to complete a new picnic area and a trail.

gmckenna@tricitynews.com

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