Generations of rowers remember Taconite

Re: “SOS for a B.C. maritime legend,” Sept. 9.

Long before Elk Lake near Victoria became the home of Canada’s national rowing team, the Vancouver Rowing Club at the foot of Coal Harbour near the entrance to Stanley Park served that purpose.

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The Boeing yacht Taconite was moored for decades 300 metres from the end of the harbour. After outings on the congested waters of Burrard Inlet that regularly took the rowing crews beyond the Second Narrows bridge to Port Moody, the final sprint for home was always marked with the coxswain’s call of “Taconite.”

The word still conjures up memories of lungs grasping for oxygen and legs burning from lactic acid in the minds of thousands of rowers, most of whom are now senior citizens.

The Taconite is one of the many symbols of B.C.’s coastal heritage, which is disappearing.

R. Brian McDaniel

Cobble Hill

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