Living on a lighthouse: author shares her memories

Caroline Woodward will be signing books at Curious Coho Books and hosting a slideshow at Char’s Landing on Thursday, Oct. 22.

Author Caroline Woodward will be signing copies of Light Years: Memoir of a Modern Lighthouse Keeper at Curious Coho Books (5039 Johnston Rd.)

“I keep my century-old wedding ring…in a small wooden box the majority of the time. My hands are immersed in dirt, dough or diesel far too often to risk damaging them. I buff them up and wear them when we head Outside for holidays or I go out to work as a writer.”

The phrase is buried deep in West Coast author Caroline Woodward’s newest book, but it sums up the past few years of her life quite succinctly.

Light Years: Memoir of a Modern Lighthouse Keeper is a descriptive, well written tome of Woodward’s time as a lighthouse keeper on the West Coast. She currently lives with her husband, photographer and fellow lightkeeper Jeff George, on Lennard Island Lightstation, visible from Tofino. People from the West Coast will recognize many of the places she writes about.

She has worked at nearly a dozen lightstations since 2008, learning unexpected skills like estimating the altitude and coverage of clouds up to 2,500 feet or learning to give daily weather reports to Coast Guard radio.

She has worked at Nootka, Estevan Point, Pachena Point, Entrance Island, Chrome Island, Chatham Point, Cape Scott and Quatsino/Kains Island.

Woodward fell into the lighthouse life through curiosity: she met a relief lighthouse keeper on a ferry on the way to Alert Bay and struck up a conversation with him. Several weeks later her husband received his first assignment, on Egg Island, and their life was transformed.

When she realized she could move to a remote island to devote herself to her true passion, there was no turning back.

“Lennard Island is my favourite because of the many beautiful flower beds, a lily pond and hedges of fuchsia and honeysuckle amidst the salal, planted by lightkeepers decades before us,” she said.

“On reasonably calm days—with no danger of fog—it is possible to kayak around the Clayoquot Sound islands nearby and to see wonderful wildlife like the annual March migration of over 23,000 gray whales to Alaska and many migrating birds as well.”

Woodward will be signing books at Curious Coho Books and hosting a slideshow at Char’s Landing on Thursday, Oct. 22.

editor@albernivalleynews.com

twitter.com/alberninews

Just Posted

Port Alberni youth breaks neck in riverbank accident

Fundraiser has been set up for youth and his family

Port Alberni’s high school gets a rainbow crosswalk for Pride Day

Students and staff at Alberni District Secondary School celebrated the official opening… Continue reading

Port Alberni man dies in ATV accident

A Port Alberni man has died following an all-terrain vehicle accident near… Continue reading

City of Port Alberni imposing water restrictions

Stage 1 restrictions go into effect June 17

Port Alberni’s Five Acre Shaker goes green

Music festival has sustainable initiatives planned for fifth year

10 facts about Father’s Day

Did you know that the special day for dads was first celebrated in 1910?

B.C. VIEWS: When farmland protection doesn’t protect farmers

Secondary residences aren’t mansions, families tell Lana Popham

Bombers down B.C. Lions 33-23 in season opener

Former Lion Andrew Harris leads Winnipeg with 148 rushing yards

Northern B.C. family remembers murdered Indigenous woman with memorial walk

Still no closure for Ramona Wilson’s family 25 years later

Monkey spotted on late-night jaunt in Campbell River

Conservation officers also apparently looking for cougar in the area

B.C. university to offer mentorship program for former youth in care

Students using the provincial tuition waiver program will soon be able to form a community at KPU

Cyclists competing in one of the toughest bike races on the planet pass through Fernie

Divide riders looking strong as they finish first leg of 4160 km race

You might not know these B.C. records are public

Hired a lawyer to file a civil claim? Those are published online

B.C. bus driver loses case to get job back after texting while driving full bus

An arbitator ruled that Tim Wesman’s phone usage was a “a reckless disregard for public safety”

Most Read