Bill Smith waves at Saturn from Cattle Point

Walk the Planets in Oak Bay

Cattle Point stars as the sun in new walking tour

Bill Smith sees Oak Bay as a solar system of sorts with the centre of things at Cattle Point.

Home of the Cattle Point Urban Star Park, he hopes to develop a trail to create something for visitors to see and learn when they come to the star park during daylight hours.

“Telling a story though a walk,” he said, seated seaside under the sun itself on a hot summer day.

He was inspired in Passau, a community the size of Oak Bay in Germany, when he and his wife Elizabeth came across a sphere that they soon realized represented the sun. Further along they found a second, representing a planet. It was precisely what Bill had already envisioned for Oak Bay.

“Over the week it became really clear to me this would be a good idea,” he said.

“We should make Cattle Point, because it’s so special, where the sun is.”

He was motivated by the amount of information and encouragement offered by the folks in Passau. So far, he’s developed the Oak Bay Walk of Planets online with only geographical points of interest.

Following a distance formula to keep the planet distances to scale, the first world from the sun would be Mercury at Willows Beach. Venus is situated at the Oak Bay Beach Hotel and Mars fits nicely at Walbran Park to fulfill an “inner planets” tour.

“My idea is people can take a walk in an hour or two and end up back in the village,” Smith explained.

For those looking for a larger tour of the planets, perhaps on bike, trails connect the entire solar system.

Next would be Jupiter at Fort Rodd Hill via Galloping Goose followed by Saturn at the Sooke Potholes. For the distant traveller Uranus would be China Beach and Neptune near the end of the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail at Port Refrew, ending with Pluto at the end of the West Coast Trail in Bamfield.

“We’re building another connection … put an umbrella around what we already have,” he said.

The next step, pending funding and approvals, would be to install cairns or other physical markers along the way.

“There’s lots of places where you could put a sun, without offending anyone,” he said of the first project he hopes to get underway over the next year. The project with installations would cost about $50,000 he figures, about $5,000 each.

Visit cattlepointstarpark.org online for more detail and maps of the Oak Bay Walk of Planets.

Just Posted

Oak Bay brothers scoop 10 kg of poop from park paths in 30 mins

Family picks up dog poo to give back, inspire others to be more responsible

Crash snarles traffic on Highway 17

Traffic southbound is seriously delayed and northbound down to one lane on… Continue reading

UPDATED: Materials linked to 1992 Colwood murder found at construction site in Metchosin

West Shore RCMP investigating to determine if relevant to the old case

Local and international artists paint murals across Victoria

Sixteen murals are spread out across downtown Victoria as part of the ‘concrete canvas’ project

Federal government announces over $115 million to Royal Canadian Navy

Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan was at CFB Esquimalt to announce missile system upgrades

PHOTOS: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

The rest of the province also dealing with thick haze as smoky skies continue

Authorities mull evacuation order for Zeballos

Smoke billowed from the steep hillsides of Zeballos on Friday evening, as… Continue reading

Five things to do in Greater Victoria this weekend

Puppy yoga, horses, cars, water guns and more make up this weekend’s list of events to see

Safeway union urges prejection of mediator recommendations

Says mediator asks for too many concessions

Fire chases B.C. crews out of their own camp

Crews in Burns Lake had to leave after a wildfire reportedly overtook their sleeping quarters

Saanich teen takes her karate skills onto the world stage

National champion Olivia Brodie will compete at the 2018 Junior Pan-American Karate Championships

First long-awaited Cyclone lands near Victoria airport

Military helicopter first of nine to come to Saanich Peninsula base

To address peacock problem, B.C. city moves ahead on trapping plan

Surrey’s new bylaw focuses on ensuring people no longer feed the birds, ahead of relocation

Most Read