Bay Class Minesweeper





Battle honours and awards:  Atlantic  1941-45,   Normandy  1944,   English Channel 1944-45



Laid down: 10 Jul 1956

Launched: 26 Feb 1957

Commissioned: 12 Dec 1957

Paid off: 1964


Paid off: 22 Aug 1997

Fate: Sold to private interests.


Built by Yarrows Ltd., Esquimalt, she was commissioned on 12 Dec 1957, and was a member of Training Group Pacific until paid off for the final time on 22 Aug 1997. Her specifications on completion were: Displacement: 396 tons; Length: 152 ft, Beam: 28 ft; Draught: 8 ft; Speed: 16 kts; Armament: 1-40mm; Complement: 3 officers, 35 men. COWICHAN was sold to private interests and eventually ended up at the the old Lamford Forest Products wharf, Sooke, BC - neglected and covered in graffiti.  On 25 Aug 2023 she was photographed being towed out past Wiffin Spit to an unknown destination.



Photos and Documents          Ship's company photos          The Ship's Bell           Commissioning Ceremony



Commanding Officers


LCdr G.W.S. Brooks, RCN - 12 Dec 1957 - 27 Aug 1959

LCdr W.C. Wilson, RCN - 28 Aug 1959 - 30 Aug 1961

LCdr Richard Dezso Okros, RCN - 31 Aug 1961 - Aug 1963

LT A.P. Howard, RCN - Aug 1963 - Feb 1964

LCdr Duncan Edward Miller, C.A.F. - 1977

LCdr Robert Self, C.A.F. - dates unknown

LCdr David Cogdon - dates unknown



     In memory of those who have crossed the bar    

They shall not be forgotten




Former Crew Members


Hughes, Cyril


Miller, Duncan E.

Paries, Emil T., ABRP - 1958-1961



Photos and Documents


HMCS COWICHAN 162 - date unknown

From the collection of Sid Dobing

Courtesy of Brian Dobing



DND / RCN Photo - Crown copyright








(WP104-WP105) 4 American and 4 Canadian minesweepers conducting exercises - 1962.  HMCS FORTUNE 151, HMCS JAMES BAY 152, HMCS COWICHAN 162 and HMCS MIRAMICHI 163  (WP106) HMCS COWICHAN flying her "Battle Flag"  (WP107) Sweep Exercise - 1962  (WP108) Lots of kelp on COWICHAN's minesweeping gear - Sweep Exercise 1962







(WP109) Sweep Exercise 1962 - HMCS MIRAMICHI 163 off to starboard of HMCS COWICHAN  (WP110) HMCS MIRAMICHI 163 flying her pirate flag on her jack staff  (WP111) Officers on HMCS COWICHAN - 1962  (WP112) unknown, Frampton and CERA W. Curry on HMCS COWICHAN  (WP113) Engineers on HMCS COWICHAN - 1962




  (WP114) Minesweeping squadron heading to Stockton, Ca - 1963

(WP115) HMCS COWICHAN's Paying-off crew - 1964


From the collection of William (Bill) Argyle Paterson, P1BN, RCN / C.A.F.


Courtesy of Bruce Paterson



Former HMCS COWICHAN 162 lies neglected alongside the old Lamford Forest Products wharf, Cooper's Cove, near Sooke, BC.

Photographer / Derek Lewers 2015, the Sooke Mirror News

Courtesy of G. Saunders

Historical note: The area where the former HMCS COWICHAN is tied up was the Sooke Forest Products (SFP) sawmill for many years. The name changed to the Lamford Forest Products after a group of employees took over the mill. The mill is now shut down.




Former HMCS COWICHAN, Cooper's Cove, near Sooke, BC - 2017

Photographer / Doug Clement 2017

Courtesy of Doug Clement of Doug Clement Photography, Victoria BC



The former HMCS COWICHAN 162 at the old Lamford Forest Products wharf, Cooper's Cove, near Sooke, BC - Apr 2020


Photographer / Courtesy of: David Weldon. Sooke, BC.



The former HMCS COWICHAN 162 at the old Lamford Forest Products wharf, Cooper's Cove, near Sooke, BC 20 Jun 2023

Photographer / Ben Whiting 2023



The End???


On or about 16/17 Jul 2023, the former HMCS COWICHAN was towed from her berth in Cooper's Cove, BC to Sunny Shores Resort and Marina.  When she was towed to her new location there was an Osprey's nest on her mast that had chicks that had hatched just 3 weeks earlier.  The photos below, taken 25 Aug 2023, show the former HMCS COWICHAN being towed out to sea from the Sunny Shores Resort and Marina to an unknown destination / fate. The Osprey nest is no longer on the mast and it is presumed they allowed the chicks to fledge before towing her away. The final photo shows her on the seaward side of the Whiffin Spit heading into the straits .....  Is this finally the end of the COWICHAN or will there be another chapter?







Photos courtesy of / Rosemary Jorna, Sooke, BC 2023