Official No: 0347780
Place Built: North Vancouver, BC
Builder: Vancouver Shipyards Ltd.
Year Built: 1973
Vehicles: 30
Passengers: 195
Crew: 5
Overall Length: 54.75 m
Length: 54.71 m
Breadth: 14.17 m
Gross Tons: 466
Service Speed: 10 knots
Horsepower: 640


The Kahloke is a K-class vessel and one of many small ferries in the BC Ferries fleet. She has three sister ships in the fleet, the Klitsa , Kwuna , and the newly acquired John Atlantic Burr . The two Albion ferries, the Kulleet and Klatawa are also sister ships. During the summer season the Kahloke operates on the Denman Island - Hornby Island run and during the winter season she operates on the Chemainus - Thetis Island - Kuper Island triangle route.


During the busier summer season, the Kahloke is based out of Hornby Island, crossing Lambert Channel to Denman Island making 12 to 15 round trips a day. What is considered the "summer season" is different every year and can begin in the early spring and last to late fall. When the route is busy, as it often is in the summer, the posted schedule is sometimes thrown out the window and the ferry shuttles back and forth with little delay at either side. In the winter months, the Kahloke is usually replaced by the Tachek .

When on the Chemainus - Thetis Island - Kuper Island route, the Kahloke is based on Thetis Island and makes several round trips between the town and islands every day. The round trip takes about 1 hour if the ferry stops at all 3 terminals. In the summer the Kahloke is replaced by the slightly smaller Klitsa .

Onboard, the Kahloke has very few amenities. There are two small lounges; the smaller seating area is located on the bridge side of the vessel and the larger lounge on the opposite side. The view is quite nice, however, as deck is close to water level. There are also washrooms onboard.

The bridge on the Kahloke is located mid-ship on one side of the vessel. The ferry has two engines and two propellers (one at each end). The ferry can travel in either direction at service speed. She is equipped with a number life rafts in case of evacuation and a single rescue boat located above the larger passenger lounge area.



Marine Design Associates Ltd. Timeline

The Kahloke was built in 1973 for the British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Highways. Like many of the similar smaller ferries in the fleet (and elsewhere) the ferry was designed by Marine Design Associates Ltd. of Victoria. After being built, the Kahloke was placed on the Nanaimo harbour - Gabriola Island run, replacing the slightly smaller Klatawa . However, even the Kahloke was quickly overloaded as well and she was soon replaced by the substantially larger Quinitsa . In 1978, the Kahloke was placed on the Hornby Island - Denman Island run, replacing the Klitsa .

In 1985 the Kahloke , along with all of the Ministry of Transportation and Highways coastal assets, were transferred to BC Ferries. With BC Ferries, the ferry continued to be operated on the Hornby Island - Denman Island run.

Usually the Kahloke can be found on one of two routes, but for a couple weeks in June 2000, the Kahloke teamed up with the Nimpkish on the Gabriola Island - Nanaimo route as an emergency replacement vessel when the Quinsam was forced out of service with a damaged hull. This is not the only time the Kahloke has been used on other routes. The ferry has also been used as a replacement vessel on the Buckley Bay - Denman Island run, replacing the Quinitsa while the latter is in for refit.

On January 15, 2006, one trip between Thetis Island and Chemainus was cancelled so the Kahloke could be used as a viewing platform for the sinking of an old Boeing 737 airplane in the waters off Chemainus. The airplane was sunk by the Artificial Reef Society. At the same time, a ceremony was held on board the ferry in remembrance of two Chemainus brothers (Harold and Leslie Rae) who were killed during World War II when their Lancaster bombers were shot down. A plaque commemorating the two pilots was attached to airplane before it was sunk.

Origin of Name

Kahloke - Means "swan" in the Native Chinook language (Clapp, 78).

Interestingly, the Kahloke is not the first ferry on the coast holding that name. The original Kahloke was known as the "Grand Old Lady" of ferries, an illustrious ship that had a long and varied life on both coasts of the continent. That ferry held 4 different names: S.S. Asbury Park (New York), S.S. Sacramento City (San Francisco), M.V. Kahloke (Black Ball - British Columbia), and finally the Langdale Queen (BC Ferries).

For Further Reading

Clapp, Frank. Ministry of Transportation and Highways: Inland and Coastal Ferries. Victoria: Province of British Columbia, 1981. Also 1978 and 1991 editions.

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