Cowichan River

Well, last weekend the summer seemed to hit. It was quite amazing to
garden in the sun and take in the light of the warm season. It was so warm that
my husband, my 11 year old son and I felt it was time for our first river swim of the year.
Our place is a 5 minute walk to the  Cowichan River which is a Canadian Heritage River
that carries a great amount of history in it’s flowing path.

We made our way down through the forest and enjoyed exploring the wild flowers of spring and listening to the birds
celebrating life through their symphony of song.  The sound of the river grew louder and the green life
surrounding us felt heavenly as the light danced through the upper branches onto the layers of growth beneath them.

We made our way to the edge of the forest and over the uneven rocks that strengthened our balance.
I brought my bodyboarding booties for my dip as my ankles seem to get really sore when it’s cold.
We took our time feeling the water with our toes and eventually I went in for about 5 seconds.
My water loving husband went in for a bit longer and our son just stood at the edge.

I felt so alive after that dip in the river. I’m so grateful to call this place my home.

“Every year we were assured great riches as the spawning salmon returned to the Cowichan, Koksilah, and other rivers and streams.  Their capture and distribution was carefully managed by our Elders through the use of fish weirs, a gift from the First Ancestor Syalutsa.  The weirs ensured abundant fish for our people to eat, while allowing enough fish to reach the spawning beds to ensure future returns.  Other resources were equally managed with an eye to future abundance.

Our ancestors touched the lands, rivers, and oceans in our territory lightly and with respect.  We used only what nature provided, and only what we needed.  Today, you can walk on ancient village sites and see little evidence of our ancestors’ presence because of this respect for the earth.”*









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