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

WATCH: Heiltsuk Nation open first Big House in 120 years in northern B.C.

Opening means the community now has an appropriate space for spiritual and ceremonial events

Prince Rupert’s students are baking it all the way to the bank

Charles Hays band students serve up goodies to fund summer trip

Two temporary voyages between Prince Rupert and Ketchikan added to AMHS schedule

October and November will see service to Alaska during the last week of each month

Police still looking for more info on missing mushroom picker in Nass Valley

65-year-old Greg Agnew was reported missing on Sept. 30

VIDEO: U.S. officials refute British couple’s ‘accidental’ border-crossing claim

Authorities say couple was arrested after illegal entry from B.C., with $16,000 and marijuana

Woman, 24, faces life-altering injuries after being dragged 4 blocks by vehicle in Vancouver

A gofundme account says the woman will have to undergo multiple complex surgeries

Fatal overdoses down by 33% in B.C., but carfentanil deaths continue to spike

Carfentanil, an illicit drug more powerful than fentanyl, causing more deaths than ever

Terrace artist turns historic downtown tree into work of art

Terrace artist carves a logger into wooden stump

A year after pot legalization in Canada, it’s a slow roll

It’s one year into Canada’s experiment in legal marijuana, and hundreds of legal pot shops have opened

ELECTION 2019: Climate strikes push environment to top of mind for federal leaders

Black Press Media presents a three-part series on three big election issues

ICBC willing to loosen grip on driver claim data, David Eby says

Private insurers say claims record monopoly keeps them out

Most Read