Posted by: cherylyoung | March 25, 2012

The first Lighthouse on Canada’s West Coast is still in operation and you can take a tour

A National Historic Site –

 The first lighthouse on Canada’s west

coast is still in operation!

There hasn’t been a keeper here since the light was

automated in 1929, but every year many thousands of

visitors step inside a real l9th century light, and capture

some of the feeling of ships wrecked and lives saved.

Built by the British in 1860, when Vancouver Island was

not yet part of Canada, Fisgard’s red brick house and

white tower has stood faithfully at the entrance to

Esquimalt harbour.

Once a beacon for the British Royal Navy’s Pacific

Squadron, today Fisgard still marks home base for

the Royal Canadian Navy.

Inside the building are two floors of exhibits, dealing

with shipwrecks, storms, far- flung lights, and the

everyday working equipment of the light keeper a

century ago.

Right next to the tower stirs on the second floor, a

specially-made video evokes the loneliness and isolation

that was the lot of the l9th century keeper.

The waterfront sites at Fisgard Lighthouse and Fort Rodd

Hill are extremely photogenic, especially with the

scenic backdrop of the Olympic Mountains in

neighbouring Washington state.

The Strait of Juan de Fuca almost always offers a wide

variety of ships, from small sailing vessels, to

enormous cargo ships, and the proximity of the

Canadian Navy base means that military craft of

several nations are often seen at close range.

Wildlife at the sites includes Columbian black-tailed

deer, river otters, mink, raccoons, harbour seals, and

sea lions.

Bird-watching

Birders may be rewarded with a wide variety of both

pelagic and meadow birds, including bald eagles,

blue herons, harlequin and eider ducks, and many

small songbirds.

Picnicking

There are 12 picnic tables, including one for disabled

visitors, near the parking lot.

You may also picnic inside the sites, under the trees

on the main field, or on any of our three beaches.

Please note that there are no fires or barbeques

permitted in the sites.

Scuba Diving

Scuba diving is becoming more and more popular in

the waters around Fisgard Lighthouse, but divers are

advised that there is no vehicle access and that they

will have to transport their equipment about 500

metres (1/4 mile) from the parking lot

(Hint: bring a wheelbarrow to move tanks and weights!)

Food Service

The Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse Preservation

Society offers light refreshments and souvenirs in the

old Canteen building inside Fort Rodd Hill during the

summer months.

June 11-12

Fisgard Lighthouse 150th Anniversary Celebrations

Join us the evening of June 11 and all day June 12 for

some very special festivities to celebrate this

sesquicentennial and a chance to view the all-new

exhibits and visitor facilities at Canada’s oldest

west coast lighthouse.

CHERYL YOUNG REALTOR AND BLOGGER

SAANICH PENINSULA REALTY

SIDNEY B.C

WWW.CHERYLYOUNG.

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