Bill Smith waves at Saturn from Cattle Point

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

An SUV sits where it crashed through the front window of the 2:18 Run store in Fairfield Plaza, after the driver appeared to lose control on Monday afternoon. (Photo by Phil Nicholls)
Driver crashes through front window of Victoria running store in Fairfield

Phil Nicholls of 2:18 Run said crash sounded like an earthquake at first

Processed sewage is still being deposited at the Hartland landfill rather than sent as biosolids to a Richmond cement plant. (Black Press Media file photo)
Biosolids at Hartland still being placed on landfill in Saanich

Richmond cement plant up and running, but CRD end product not suitable for purpose

Seismic upgrading and expansion work at Victoria High School is about a year behind due to pandemic-related factors, the Greater Victoria School District announced. (Photo by Cole Descoteau)
Victoria High School seismic work, expansion a year behind schedule

Greater Victoria School District now targeting September 2023 for reopening of historic school

Elk Lake Drive area resident Michael Blayney protests a proposed multi-building development for his Royal Oak neighbourhood, outside Saanich municipal hall on Monday (June 14). (Photo by Megan Atkins-Baker/News Staff)
Demonstrators protest 11-storey development on Elk Lake Drive in Saanich

Saanich locals gather at municipal hall to protest development, public hearing goes Tuesday

The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority is calling on Transport Canada to rescind its ban to Feb. 28, 2022 on cruise ship stops in Canada, to allow planning to begin in advance of a reopening of the cruise industry next year.
Greater Victoria Harbour Authority seeks end to federal ban on cruise ship stops in Canada

Greater Victoria Harbour Authority CEO hopes cruises will resume by 2022

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Neighbours fight a small late-night bush fire with garden hoses and shovels in Cinnabar Valley on June 5. They couldn’t get help from local fire services because the fire was located in an area under B.C. Wildfire Services jurisdiction. (Photo courtesy Muriel Wells)
Neighbours on edge of Nanaimo city limits left to put out bush fire themselves

Cinnabar Valley residents tackle fire with hoses and buckets for two and a half hours

Darren Campbell’s truck (pictured) was stolen when he stopped to check on a car in a ditch on Cowichan Bay Road on Monday morning. (Facebook photo)
Vancouver Island Good Samaritan’s truck stolen in nasty trick

‘Try to be a Good Samaritan and my $20,000 truck gets stolen right under my nose’

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

Creative handmade signs abound at the June 13 Tofino rally for old growth trees. (Nora O’Malley photo)
VIDEO: Tofino stands in solidarity for Fairy Creek Blockades

Over 150 supporters attend rally hosted by Friends of Clayoquot Sound

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

Most Read