is about a remote area in west central British Columbia, Canada
called the West Chilcotin. Surrounded by numerous glacial mountain
ranges, alpine lakes teeming with wild Rainbow Trout, and full
of wildlife. Living here goes from no running water or electricity
to spacious log homes with all the conveniences and without
Wilderness Adventures - Nov., Week One/2008
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of the Day.
The Town Trip
spent yesterday in Williams Lake. As usual, between appointments
and lists of things to do, even with an early start and
late home, we still never get everything done that needs
to be. Even at a dead run and dividing up the errands,
inevitably we push some stuff to the 'next time'
The road in was pretty good with just a little freezing
rain through Alexis Creek and some blowing snow up around
Riske Creek, but the weather in Williams Lake yesterday
morning was absolutely brutal. Wet, driving snow started
building up on the roads pretty fast making getting around
town a lot slower and more difficult. At one point while
Andy was at the dentist's office, I was driving to a store
just a few blocks away and there were people sliding
through stop signs and slipping and sliding all over the
road. It was a good time to go slow and stay as
far back from those people as possible since it was apparent
that most were still only running summer tires on their
Coming back home last night was excellent until about
Tatla where we hit compact snow on the highway to Nimpo
Lake. It looked like we got a couple of inches of fresh
snow here while we were gone.
This morning it started out looking like it might be a
pretty day today, but the sun struggled to stay out, although
it did manage to get up to 7C or nearly 45 degrees Fahrenheit
today. There must have been an inversion layer again,
though. When it was still freezing down here this morning
you could see the snow melting off of the tops of the
mountains. We seem to be getting a lot of those this fall.
I finally came across a set of rabbit tracks in
the woods today, the first I've seen so far. It
must be a down year in their cycle. I was surprised to
see that there weren't that many other fresh tracks, although
there were still a few. Nothing like it was after our
first snow fall when it seemed every creature in the bush
wanted to leave its mark.
It sure seems dark awfully early now. With heavy cloud
later today, it already looked like it was getting dark
at 4:30 this afternoon. It has started raining tonight
and is still holding a little above freezing. I'm not
sure what we're going to get tomorrow. It looks like that
next low pressure system is going to sweep over us so
it's just a matter of whether it's bringing us rain or
For those of you taking an extended weekend because of
Remembrance Day, have a great long weekend!
apologies for no blog last night, folks. I really wanted
to watch the American election. It would appear that Obama
had much more of a lead than the media led us to believe.
Not only was the horse race not a photo finish,
it wasn't even close. According to the media,
Obama won a majority not seen in over forty years when
Lyndon Johnson won 61% of the vote in 1964 and had the
widest popular margin in American history at that time.
Regardless of which side one might take, it was definitely
an historical election and in view of global opinion of
America, perhaps the world will look on the country a
little more favorably now, particularly on the diplomatic
While America has often been considered the protector
of civil rights in other countries, her own record at
home hasn't exactly been anything to write home about.
Perhaps this election will change that around a bit.
I think that McCain took a couple of critical missteps.
Using fear mongering to whip up hysteria was probably
the most distasteful, but to give him credit, that may
not have been him but more likely the Republican machine.
I think that his biggest misstep was in appointing Sarah
Palin as his running mate. Had he become President he
would have been the oldest ever elected to a first term.
I think that many Americans felt that with his age, his
chances of not being able to complete his term were too
high. The responsibility of a presidential candidate
is to choose a vice president fit to run the country in
his place. It's an important responsibility and I think
that he failed the country in that manner, particularly
when his platform was 'country first' and 'experience'.
Sarah Palin has shown us that she does not have the experience
or knowledge of foreign affairs, or even of the internal
workings of the government, to do a good job as president
of the United States of America. 38 of 70 conservatives,
including Colin Powell, cited McCain's choice of Palin
as their primary reason for endorsing Obama because all
felt McCain failed in his responsibility to the country
in his choice for VP.
I always felt that McCain should have been President rather
than George Bush. I think he would have been a great president,
although Bush did a pretty good job right after 911 of
pulling the country together. Sadly, I don't feel that
way about anything he has done in the last few years as
president. But I became really disappointed in John McCain
during this election. He changed. A lot.
I don't know if he was a puppet, or if he decided to change
his platform and become wishy washy because he was trying
to appeal to the greatest number of voters, but
he no longer seemed true to himself or authentic to me.
Obama was constantly criticized for lack of experience,
especially in foreign policy, so with methodical forethought,
he chose a running mate with that experience. But I believe
that McCain chose someone for sensationalism that would
boost his ratings with voters. He thought he could pick
up the disgruntled 'Hillary' women voters and satisfy
the religious right in his choice. Instead, he infused
fear into a lot of voters that considered the possibility
that she might become president. Given another twenty
years in office, Palin might bring something worthwhile
to the post of Vice Presidency, but at this point in time,
I dread to think what would have happened the first time
she had to sit down in talks with the heads of an Arab
State, or with China, or with any other country that requires
decorum and delicate political maneuvering.
McCain's speech last night was the first time in
many months that I saw the old John McCain. The
one I've admired for years, and the real person that's
been hiding under that stiff phony exterior for some time.
I can't emphasize enough how impressed I was with his
speech congratulating Obama, and asking that the country
come together under Obama's presidency and bring America
back to greatness. Barack Obama even referred to the extraordinary
phone call he received from McCain who finally showed
the grace and style I've always respected him for.
I may be a Republican, but no matter who you voted for,
or where your roots are, Barack Obama deserves to have
the support of the country. He won that position
fair and square. And his job is not going to be
Regardless of who had won the presidency, they were going
to be handed a bucket of dog scat by the sitting government
with a country deep in debt, deep in war, and a plunging
economy. There isn't going to be a lot of money to spend,
and it's going to be difficult for any president to pull
America out of her present condition. I just hope the
American people give the new government time to do the
Yesterday wasn't too bad but it was cold and damp. It
never got above more than one degree above freezing.
All I saw yesterday were eleven Trumpeter Swans making
their elegant way above me toward the south. Such a beautiful
bird and such a strange call. Maybe that's why they call
them Trumpeter Swans except that they must all be in training.
They sound more like a cadet that has picked up a trumpet
for the first time.
Last night the mercury dipped to -10C or 14F and it hasn't
quite made it above freezing today. While it dawned clear
and cold, some high cloud moved in later today. It's supposed
to snow tomorrow so I guess we'll see.
know it happens year after year, but I'll never get used
to it. Turning the clock back in the Fall screws up my
inner clock just as much as putting it forward in the
Spring. Screws up the animals too. They think we're
trying to starve them to death because we're feeding them
one hour later than their internal clocks tell them it
We seem to be turning back the clocks later in Fall and
earlier and earlier in spring. It suits me because it
means we're on Daylight Saving Time for longer in the
year but it sure is a big jump from light to dark now
moving it from the last Sunday in October to the first
Sunday in November. Or maybe it was my imagination. It's
always a shock to go from having supper in daylight to
having to turn every light on in the house just to see
I didn't realize how much we had gained in Daylight Savings
Time in the spring until I looked it up. We went from
the last Sunday in April in the 70's to the second Sunday
in March in 2007. Don't get me wrong, I love it! I'm
hoping that there's a conspiracy afoot to do away with
Standard time entirely. You know, keep moving
it later and later into fall and bring it on sooner and
sooner in the spring so that the Standard Time proponents
don't realize what's happening. Until one day whoever
it is that's in charge of these decisions finally decides
that there's really no point in going back to Standard
Time for only three weeks out of the year and pulls a
sneaky on those in favor of it. I've been waiting for
a few decades for that to happen and I really hope
to see it happen before I'm on my deathbed and can't enjoy
the extra evening light anymore.
All joking aside, in our new 'green' era I'm really hoping
that the energy conservation visionaries will bring an
argument to the table that will banish Standard Time once
and for all. Think about it....Everyone gets up in the
morning, rushes around for a few minutes and then they're
off to school, or work, or whatever. Some families might
actually sit around a breakfast table and eat a good hearty
breakfast together like the cereal commercials like to
push, but it's highly unlikely. I've sure
never met a family like that except maybe on the weekend.
However, I do know a lot of families that spend time in
the kitchen cooking supper, put a good meal on the table,
and take their time eating it. It makes sense to
me that you're going to consume a lot more electricity
in that hour and a half or so in the evening than you
are going to consume in a half hour in the morning.
By the same token, people coming out of a dark sleep don't
tend to turn on a lot of lights in the morning while they
do their thing before going to work, school, etc. While
people coming from light all day, tend to turn on a lot
of lights when they come home to a dark house, especially
to cook or eat. They may turn them down later to watch
television, etc. but they're still going to burn more
electricity in a dark early evening than in a dark morning.
I'm not necessarily a greenie but I will jump on whatever
bandwagon will help me to get rid of Standard Time forever!!!
Anyone with me???
So....We have a landmark presidential election in the
States tomorrow. I know that every country in the world
has been following this one and I'm pretty sure more Canadians
have been following it than even followed their own election
two weeks ago.
My Sister-in-law sent me a very interesting link tonight
that I could not resist following up. Its a site called,
'If the world could vote' and actually
allows a single computer to vote once, and recognizes
the country that computer is located in.
I have to admit at being astounded at the figures.
Of 746,437 votes from 12 countries, Barack Obama garnered
86.9% (648,870 votes) while John McCain only received
13.1% (97,557 votes). Obviously, the Bush Administration
has not been looked on very fondly by the rest of the
world so I naturally assumed that it made sense for most
of the world to favor Obama. Some countries have a high
black population, many countries, like Canada tend to
be liberal or socialist, etc. or some have an obvious
stake in not having someone like Bush in
the Whitehouse. Obama received over 80% of the vote from
Iran. Is that because many in Iran think that Obama would
make a better president? Or is it to Iran's advantage
for the war on terror to be backed off a bit?
I can't say I was surprised that the rest of the world
was in favor of Obama, although I was surprised by how
much. But most telling of all were the numbers from the
US. Yes, US residents are permitted to cast a vote on
this intriguing website started by three guys in Iceland.
Weighing in with 247,148 votes, Obama garnered 79.8% of
them, McCain 20.2%. One has to assume that as many Republicans
caught wind of this website as did Democrats, whether
by email or word of mouth....so what's up?
Well, I don't honestly know but I have some theories.
Theory #1 and most obvious is that the Icelandic
boys are skewing the figures. The only motive for doing
that is if they had personal favoritism for Obama but
they would gain more by having honest and
trusted information on their site so it seems an unlikely
motive. Many of the figures for the other countries seem
to be reflected accurately according to some of the newscasts
I have seen. The polls done by media really does
show that Obama is favored over McCain in most countries.
So that means that probably only the US polling figures
Theory #2. But are they? Is it possible
that this Internet poll is more accurate than the polls
we see and hear about on TV? It isn't in the media's
best interest for one candidate to be far ahead of another.
Everyone likes a horse race and this is a really
important horse race so they would much rather have a
photo finish! So, does that mean that US pollsters are
lying to us?
Theory #3. Not necessarily. Keep in mind
who's using this Internet poll. People in households that
can afford computers and an Internet hookup for one. It
can be suggested that those people who use the Internet
are on average more educated, more internationally aware
and more liberal in their politics than those who don't.
I think that this would certainly apply to countries other
than the US. But does it apply to the US?
First, those voting from the US have to have the time
to find the site and then be bothered to vote on
it, and be willing to trust the site enough to
vote on it. Conservatives, (having been one all of my
life) are a notoriously suspicious lot and perhaps less
likely to trust an Internet polling machine. Personally,
I don't think you can trust one on the Internet any less
than the electronic ones in the States from the sound
of it, but that's a personal opinion.
So what's happened with those numbers? I'm back
to....I really don't know. But it gets the brain
It never made it much above 4C or 39F today and was bloody
chilly! We were lucky to not have any breeze or it would
have been downright bone chilling. Quite a change from
the last few days and the way the thermometer is dropping
tonight reflects the fact that the jet stream has taken
a major dive southward.
The Dean River has been freezing over down near
the bridge for a week or more now and less and
less of the ice is thawing out during the day. There's
lots of ducks on lake coming in close to shore the way
they do this time of year. I've seen loads of Canada geese
going over as well as the odd small group of Trumpeter
Swans. Oh, and the fish are still jumping like crazy out
on Nimpo Lake!
There's been lots of smoke around the last few days as
folks start burning their slash piles accumulated from
the clean up after our windstorm. The snow on the ground
has made it a good, safe time to burn, but wet wood makes
lots of smoke!
The Halloween Party
Halloween party was a great success Friday night.
The fireworks were super and I'm hoping to get some pictures
of them from people that were bright enough to bring their
camera. Obviously, I wasn't one of them. Friday morning
I was going over everything that I needed to remember
to take to the hall for the party. My camera and tripod
was one of the items on the list. So much for lists...
The weather really held for us with clear skies and lots
of stars. Even with a bonfire it was black as the
ace of spades outside but those fireworks sure
put off a lot of smoke! Some were nearly obscured by it.
Someone's cows out on the range sure didn't like the sounds
of explosions. We were all laughing at how much they were
complaining. After the explosions were over I could hear
River barking across the lake. He hates fireworks. Thank
heavens all our neighbours were at the Hall.
We got somewhere over 40 people for the dance and quite
a few more than that for the fireworks. Not a lot of people
actually danced because most of them spent time visiting
with each other which is great. That's the whole
point of having a community event. Our dynamic
has changed and the people coming to events like this
now are different from many the years before. The Charlotte
Lake folks attended and they're a lively bunch as well
as many of our neighbours and some young people. A few
folks wore costumes which was kind of fun. Andy and I
didn't have a lot of time to decide whether we would dress
up or not so I just went as myself. Country Bumpkin.
We're really lucky to have Richard and Leah from the Nimpo
Lake Store as part of our community. Leah's a regular
little fireball and the organizer behind most of our events
anymore. Had it not been for her we would never
have thought of putting on a Halloween party but
would have enjoyed a quiet evening and our jack-o'-lantern
at home instead.
Most people left fairly early and we had some of the clean
up done and were home by midnight, which was quite nice.
Since Anahim Lake was also having fireworks and a dance,
we were lucky to be blessed with a police presence only
once and that after pretty much everyone was gone. Since
no one left without a designated driver, the police had
no reason to hassle anyone.
We had a funny day yesterday with that monochromatic look
you see over the mountains and on the lake in the fall,
but the fish were jumping so we went fishing in the afternoon.
It was absolutely amazing. We got eight fish in
one hour and we never even got out of the bay in front
of our place! We had lots of strikes as well so
the fish were hungry, and one rotten bugger made two mighty
splashes and took my fly without so much as a fare-thee-well.
It was great! It looked like there was a hatch of some
sort of little flying bug which is probably why our flies
were so popular. At least we have lots of fillets down
in the freezer now.
I scurried out for a walk afterwards and still no more
sign of that bear. But I did come across fresh fox tracks
and we scared up a ptarmigan that was already snow white.
I ran across more ptarmigan tracks all through the woods
The temperatures were pretty darn good both yesterday
and today with it getting to 8C yesterday and over 9C
or 48F today. There was hardly a breath of wind
out on the water yesterday which is one reason we could
get away with being out there without freezing our butts
off. A breeze did come up in the afternoon, just as it
did today, but it was still pleasant. We're trying to
enjoy as much of the warmer weather as possible, because
it will undoubtedly change soon!
As you can see, I've changed to a new week. You'll find
last week's articles at October
Week Four including an account about
that wicked windstorm we had.
The purpose of this web site is to draw attention to a
remote area of west central British Columbia. It is a
beautiful area that relies heavily on tourism. The search
engines don't know much about the West Chilcotin, Anahim
Lake, Nimpo Lake or any of the other small communities
in the region and I hope to change that! Even as large
as this site will eventually be, there just isn't enough
room or time in the day to fully describe this incredible
country but I am going to try scraping away at the tip
of the iceberg, so join me!
the links, and see what the West Chilcotin is really like!