Re-launch of George Dyson’s Mount Fairweather
On Sunday, I helped with the re-launch of George Dyson’s Mount Fairweather. Eric Startup and I paddled over from outside Cates Park in North Vancouver to the beach in Belcarra Park near the tree where Dyson had lived for three years while researching, designing and building the world’s biggest kayak. The original launch of the 48 foot, more than 300 kilogram, craft had been in 1975 and it had been stored outside on land since its last use in 1985. A group of more than twenty people carried it from its home of many years to the beach, where it was launched at high tide. With Dyson in the stern, six paddlers took it on a big circle in front of Belcarra’s main dock and returned to allow others to experience an outing on this very unusual canoe. Despite its age and long period of outdoor storage, it was in good condition, with the original art work still visible.
The occasion of the return of Dyson and some of those associated with the 1970s era when the Mount Fairweather was built, was the planned eviction at the end of June of the cottagers in the area known as Belcarra South. The eight cottages there are leased from Metro Vancouver which owns the land as part of its Belcarra Regional Park. The cottagers are seeking to stop the planned eviction and the re-launch of the Mount Fairweather and its return to a new location between two of the cottages is part of their efforts to gain support for their cause.