Today we have some updates on getting around, including the latest road and trail closures and the new bus pass system. But there’s also a story about being trapped: specifically, a raccoon trapped in a local family’s bathroom and ready to fight its way out.
Today’s approx. read time: 5 minutes
What’s changed (and what hasn’t) in Victoria’s new bus payment system
Still from BC Transit Umo intro video
Victoria Regional Transit fully launched its Umo card-payment system last week, becoming the first BC Transit region to do so. Machines, like those used in Vancouver, can read riders’ bus pass cards or a QR code from the Umo app. This is only the first step of the electronic payment system, so what has changed and what is still to come?
Card or app, not both
Riders can pay with either the phone app or the card, but can’t switch between them. The card is reloaded with money though a separate page online, by phone, or in-person at certain locations.
Two rides = day pass
A second trip using the card or app automatically becomes a day pass.
Credit/debit card tap won’t work until mid-2024
Currently only the bus card, app, cash/coins, or tickets work.
Monthly passes are now 30-day passes
They take effect the day they’re first used (not bought).
Cards are free and can be picked up at the locations on this list.
The rollout will continue up the Island,
beginning with the Cowichan Valley and Nanaimo systems, before spreading on the mainland.
⚠️ Capital Bulletin
Road work on Bay in Vic West, from today until Sept. 1, will limit traffic to westbound-only. [Map]
Sooke Hills Wilderness trail closed 8am-2pm today from Humpback parking lot to suspension bridge.
Raccoon captured after causing mayhem in Westshore home
Last Tuesday two calls went out to police from the same stretch of Leckfield Avenue in Langford: one about an attack on a dog, and one about screaming. The attacker was a wily raccoon, and the screamers were the dog’s owners. RCMP said neighbours had heard their cries after the raccoon fought the dog, chased it inside, followed it in, and then fought the humans within.
Video [above] shows police, after animal control ended up being unavailable, apprehending the raccoon from the bathroom using a dog pole and lacrosse stick. The raccoon can be seen trying to climb up the wall, with two audible crashes—almost sounding like cartoon sound effects—when it is thwarted and falls.
The raccoon was released from custody outside, and the family and dog had only minor injuries.
Tofino-area surfing brings Hawaiian and Tla-o-qui-aht wave riders together
Nuu-chah-nulth youth gather around Lacy Kaheaku, learning carving techniques and history. Alexandra Mehl / Local Journalism Initiative
On a sunny Esowista beach, young Indigenous surfing enthusiasts are learning how to carve boards and about the history of the sport. Despite surfing’s Indigenous roots, Indigenous people have been underrepresented in the Tofino scene over the years. That’s especially true for women, who Lacy Kaheaku says were traditionally the main recreational surfers in Hawaiian culture.
Kaheaku, of Hawai’i, is the teacher on the beach. She didn’t always feel included in surfing, but a decade of learning about its history helped her rediscover her connection to it. She’s hoping she can do the same for these youth on the Island—and help them connect to the natural world and to similar cultures throughout the Pacific.
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⭐️ Capital Picks
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🗞️ In Other News
Sooke getting 2 new crosswalks & more flashing lights: Sooke’s climate action funding is paying $20K of the $50K cost, and ICBC the rest. Work is expected to finish in the fall.
Why is the Cowichan Estuary being re-flooded? After a contentious town hall meeting, The Discourse broke down the common concerns and the responses from the restoration project’s representatives.
Pacific FC misses its shot to regain the #1 ranking in the Canadian Premier League, falling 0-1 in Calgary on Sunday. PFC is now in a four-way tie for second, with the next home game on Saturday. Watch yesterday’s highlights below:
🗓️ Things to do
💃 Live music in Beacon Hill as CanUS plays jazz and swing. 1:30–3:20pm.
🧺 Esquimalt Farmers Market brings vendors & musicians to Gorge Park for its second-last Monday this summer.
🗓️ Parliament buildings will end summer hours in one week, meaning that there will be no more weekend hours for group or self-guided tours after this Sunday.
🎬 Movies at Cinecenta: Wednesday-Thursday: Dreamin’ Wild dramatizes the true story of how Donnie and Joe Emerson’s lives were affected by their teen pop album becoming a cult hit 30 years prior. Friday-Sunday: Asteroid City has been hailed as Wes Anderson’s best. [Showtimes]
👀 In Case You Missed It
Bacteria at the beach: What do bacteria warnings for local ocean waters mean, and what are some common causes? This piece explains.
New water restrictions on agriculture to protect fish in some Island rivers amid drought. [Capital Daily]
Check out the latest Rising Economy podcast to find out why the gender wage gap persists and how women can negotiate fair compensation from employers.*
7 of our favourite summer dishes, from Earl Grey donuts to fancy tater tots. [Tasting Victoria]
Kitten rescued by firefighters on Salt Spring on Friday.
Hwy 4 to reopen this week, but first there will be another full-day closure tomorrow. [Saturday newsletter]
100+ dolphins near Campbell River were captured on video.
$575 fines for tossing cigarettes were assessed to drivers in Victoria and Saanich this past week.