The Puntledge Paddle Festival has been cancelled due to access issues. File photo

Comox Valley up the creek without a PaddleFest

Puntledge Paddle Festival cancelled, organizers not allowed onto property

The annual Puntledge Paddle Festival has been cancelled this year largely because of access issues.

Each May for the past several years, hundreds of canoeists, kayakers and rafters have participated in the weekend gathering, hosted by the Vancouver Island Whitewater Paddling Society.

In January of this year, 3L Developments closed access to its property around Stotan Falls because of liability concerns. The company said no individual or vehicle access would be allowed through the property, which includes hundreds of acres along the Puntledge and Browns rivers.

“Last year, they (3L) allowed us onto the property, but this year that was not the case,” festival spokesman David Prothero said. “It’s a real shame because it’s a gem. A lot of people tube it, but when that river is in, it is probably one of the better rivers in Western Canada for play boating.”

He said the Puntledge is a unique river because there’s an upper section — which includes Stotan and Nymph Falls — and a lower section, which is an easier grade but still fairly continuous with waves and other play features.

“It’s on the upper level of paddling,” Prothero said.

For years, the Nanaimo-based 3L has been hoping to build homes in the area but has been stymied by the Comox Valley Regional District. The company has taken the CVRD to court about due process. The case was heard in BC Supreme Court last month in Vancouver.

Just Posted

A look back at hand logging on Cortes Island

David Ellingsen explores his family’s logging roots with the help of his camera

Vancouver Island writer goes with the flow in River Tales

Crofton author documents life on the banks of the Cowichan River

EDITORIAL: If climate really is an emergency, then act like it

Communities busy declaring climate emergencies while not doing nearly enough to fix the problem

Vancouver Island man who pleaded guilty to beating over drug debt handed nine-year jail sentence

Colin Damen Gary Lamontagne sentenced in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo

Vancouver Island’s longest, steepest, zip line nears completion

Mount Washington aims to thrill with 2.3-km drop reaching speeds approaching 100 km/h

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Most Read