Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Night at the museum

Maritime Museum in Victoria, BC
The BC Maritime Museum is holding a special exhibit to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Canadian Coast Guard. Located on the second floor of the museum, you will find videos, pictures, and dare I say, artifacts from the Coast guard, many of which I recognize from time there - model coast guard ships, fog horn, a Marconi radio station - where kids can decipher the Morse code messages - and more.

They even brought in one of the simulators from the Bamfield RHIOT course. The challenging course teaches the use of rigid hull inflatable boats to the local Coast Guard crews and visiting crews from the USCG, RCMP, Royal Canadian Navy, etc. The main training base in located in Bamfield, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, which offers challenging sea conditions to test newly acquired skills. We tried our hand at it last Sunday, during a family visit to the museum, and the simulated "733 rubber boat" seemed very realistic to me, with local Bamfield scenery that is pretty impressive.

The museum is located in Bastion Square, in the old courthouse building; downtown Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. The opening hours are from 10 am to 5 pm every day. Cost of admission is a reasonable CDN$12 per adult, even cheaper for youths and seniors, check their website for more information. The museum features various galleries on BC maritime history and special local interest galleries, such as an extensive one on BC Ferries, another one on the Navy. They also have an a large model ship collection. If you are in the area, I recommend you check it out.


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