A view of the Queen Charlotte Lodge. On Wednesday, June 24, 2020, Queen Charlotte Lodge Vice President of Sales Brian Clive said the Naden Harbour fishing resort will not start doing business this summer without the support of the community. (Queen Charlotte Lodge/Instagram photo)

Queen Charlotte Lodge confirms it will not welcome guests without support of community

‘We are not starting until we are welcome in the community,’ says Brian Clive, VP of sales for QCL

Editor’s note: Since this story was originally published on June 28, the president of the Queen Charlotte Lodge said they would reopen on July 10. Read about that new development here.

A spokesperson for the Queen Charlotte Lodge (QCL) has confirmed the Naden Harbour fishing resort will not be welcoming any guests until getting the green light from the community.

Brian Clive, vice president of sales, told the Observer the lodge would like to operate at some point this summer, but staff understand COVID-19 is an unprecedented health and safety issue, and want to be “good citizens of Haida Gwaii.”

As such, Clive said the lodge is following the lead of the Council of the Haida Nation (CHN) for a “made in Haida Gwaii solution” when it comes to reopening.

ALSO READ: Haida Nation commences 3-week period to review provincial impact of Phase 3

On June 26 the CHN confirmed it had commenced a three-week “risk assessment and consultation period” together with all island communities to review the impact phase three of the B.C. Restart Plan has on the rest of the province.

Two days earlier, on June 24, Premier John Horgan and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry had announced that phase three of the plan was ready, and allowed for the opening of resorts and hotels as well as in-province travel, which is currently still not allowed on Haida Gwaii per the CHN state of emergency.

ALSO READ: ‘We’ll continue to take a local approach’: Haida Nation president talks B.C.’s restart plan

Clive’s conversation with the Observer followed a June 19 public Facebook post by Old Massett Village Council (OMVC) chief councillor Duffy Edgars, who wrote that lodges “found a loophole where they can bypass the airport terminal and go from the plane to the helicopter.”

Emphasizing that he was speaking only for QCL and could not comment on other fishing lodges, Clive said he believes the “loophole” Edgars was describing is not a loophole at all, but rather a “respectful plan to create a zero chance of creating any contamination of the virus by the lodge across the community.”

“We’ve built plans to open the lodges utilizing just the one side of the tarmac at Masset when it’s appropriate to do so,” he said, adding that Edgars and others were provided a copy of the plan.

“To call it a loophole is unfortunate when I think really it was a novel solution to an unheard-of-until-now problem.”

Under normal circumstances, he said guests would land at the Masset airport, go inside the terminal building on the tarmac, use the facilities and wait for their turn to continue to the lodge by helicopter.

“Now imagine the jet sitting on the tarmac as a staging area,” he said of the plan to eliminate interaction between guests and the community, particularly airport staff.

Instead of going into the tarmac building, guests would wait aboard the jet until their turn to continue to the lodge by helicopter, meaning there would be “no one within 100 feet of the tarmac building.”

ALSO READ: B.C. ready for in-province travel, John Horgan says

Edgars’ post also said of lodges: “As B.C. opens up they seem to think its OK to start business as usual.”

But Clive said suggesting that QCL can start doing business “is far from the truth.”

He emphasized the plan described above is dependent on support from the community, because opening up for business contrary to the wishes of the CHN would be a “short-term win and a really long-term loss.”

Quentin Smith, the president of Pacific Coastal Airlines, also previously told the Observer the airline will not return to service at the Masset airport until the governing bodies on Haida Gwaii are comfortable with allowing non-essential travel.

ALSO READ: Young minke whale rescued after beaching near Naden Harbour

While QCL has called some staff back to work, Clive said they are only working on getting the lodge ready for guests in case hosting guests becomes possible.

He added that it takes about two and a half months to get the lodge ready to open for guests every year.

Prior to the pandemic, the lodge had planned to open on May 29. They have since pushed the opening date back to June 12, June 26 and July 3.

“We have yet to derive a dollar from sport fishing business at this time,” he said. “Is there a chance that we’re not opening at all? Absolutely.”

On the same post, Edgars commented that a lodge other than the Langara Fishing Lodge was apparently “going from Digby [Island] to their lodge.”

The Observer has reached out to Edgars and the OMVC, as well as the West Coast Fishing Club and Langara.

ALSO READ: Queen Charlotte Lodge fined $47,500 for oversized halibut

Do you have something to add to this story or something else we should report on? Email:
karissa.gall@blackpress.ca.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

fishingMasset

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

Haida hereditary chief named Liberal Candidate for North Coast Region

Roy Jones Jr. is named Liberal MLA candidate for the North Coast

COVID-19 cases grow to 13 at B.C. First Nation near Fort St. James

“This is very serious,” says Nak’azdli Whut’en Chief

Cullen confirmed as B.C. NDP candidate for Stikine despite party’s equity policy

Former Tahltan Central Government President Annita McPhee said the process made her feel “abused”

Citing stability, B.C. Premier calls snap election for Oct. 24

John Horgan meets with Lieutenant Governor to request vote

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

Victoria-area RCMP locate high-risk sex offender thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Most Read