Flash Back Fridays

DANUSIA KANACHOWSKI 1970

Danusia Kanachowski and Judy Smith

Danusia Kanachowski and Judy Smith

I have very fond memories of my times at Strathcona. I first went to the Lodge with the humanities program (teacher, Peter Croft) from Woodlands School in Nanaimo. A number of us in the program were quite taken with the Lodge and learning about being in the outdoors so we came up as a school group a number of times over the two years we were in the program. I also went up a number of times on my own to just hang out with Annie, Jamie and others during the following few years often meeting up with them at the apartment in Campbell River and driving out to the Lodge together. I remember that on one of our school trips, a hike up Elk Mountain with Annie and Roger Podalski, one of the students on the trip became hypothermic.

Annie and I built fibreglass kayaks together at Jericho with the help of Brian and Mark Creer. Mine was stolen a couple of years later when I lived in East Vancouver, going to Simon Frazer University (SFU).

I have fond memories of Myrna and Nancy Brown teaching us how to make bread. I remember working with Bunny Shannon in the kitchen. I also remember Myrna’s keen interest in nutrition and in passing the information along she was, and is, generous in discussing these things.

I also recall how kind Myrna and Jim were to people who needed some help in various ways  whether with a place to stay and work, or in other ways. They always had an open door whenever I showed up at the Lodge over the years.

I still have a survival kit that Jim made in a Murray’s Erinmoore Flake tin with a little Jack knife, a couple of flies, fishing line and until recently the original matches.

I first worked at the Lodge the summer after grade ten: helping to look after Josie (Myrna’s youngest daughter), in the kitchen, in the garden, and I even went out on a few trips. Annie and I shared one of the small cabins and I remember some one one nailing us into the cabin so we could not get out in the morning. Jim came down and started calling out to us to wake up. After he got to the door and hammered on it, he realized that we were nailed in and rescued us.

Memories by Dr. Danusia Kanachowski
Palliative Care Physician Whitehorse, Yukon

  • Escalante beach; going out with Adrian Koeleman and others in the boat 
  • Paddling the Gold river with Jim, Jamie Boulding and a few others
  • Jim scouting standing up in the canoe with his hat on 
  • Wrapping a canoe with Janet
  • Brenchley on the bridge on the Campbell River and Jim being very sympathetic
  • Jim’s salmon cooked in the cedar, west-coast way

    West Coast Style salmon BBQ

    West Coast Style salmon BBQ

  • Going on survival walks with Jim and groups and looking for pitch stumps
  • Those great hats of Jim’s  I think it was the summer of 1979 that I worked doing promotion type work for the Lodge on the island and in Vancouver – staying at the Creer’s house when in Vancouver.
  • I believe it was the summer of 1981 or 1982 that I worked as program coordinator and did a lot of office work – I had also worked with school groups over a number of years –
  • I remember a trip to the Bunsby Islands by open canoe (a crazy thing no one would probably do these days) and paddling back to Tahsis – Pauline, Paul Jorgensen and I were on the trip and Ed, the apprentice from New York , with a few clients. I recall landing on a roller beach and also riding huge swells at times.
  • Peter Dyer took a group of apprentices out in the large volume river kayaks at the same time on a separate trip. This was all before ocean kayaks were around.
  • Fond memories of paddling Nootka Sound out to Friendly Cove and to Clayoquot before there was so much evidence of logging.