Anahim/Nimpo Lake BC Header Photo
White Saddle Air Services advertising banner.
Woman in a canoe photo.
 Welcome to Anahim Lake & Nimpo Lake, British Columbia
  Business Directory

Back to Daily Blog
January 2008
February 2008
March 2008
April 2008
May 2008
June 2008
July 2008
August 2008
September 2008
October 2008
November 2008
December 2008
2007 Articles Starting With Last Week of December 2007
2006 Articles Starting With Last Week of December 2006
2005 Articles Starting With Last Week of December 2005

[Valid RSS]

Wilderness Adventures - October, Week 3/2008

This 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 the smog!
If you would like to see pictures of wildlife, mountains, lakes, exciting snowmobiling, events and more, and read stories like 'Lake Monsters' about the Lakesounds just go into Archives on the lower left side of this page.

Rolling over an image will give you its description.
Check out the Picture of the Day.

21/10/2008 7:12 PM

It's Snowing

And it's sticking....
It's been threatening to all day and by this evening we watched a curtain of snow come across the lake and hit around dark. It's only flurries so probably won't amount to much...still, I'm not really ready for it. I would like three months of summer first, please?
A blog reader and contributor from last spring has weighed in with his opinion on hunting with a chef. It's the same thought I have. I always thought I put on a pretty good table in hunt camp but I've got nothing on Chef Joe. I want to go hunting with that guy! John has kicked in with a story from his past that melds with that thought, as well as a really funny story some of you may have heard before.

Jehezzzzus H. I wanna go hunting with Michael and Chef Joe.
I remember when as a youngster I prepared to go hunting with my Mentor and Eldest brother Slim. In those days Slim had a little ranch up around Alexis Lake and the hunting was usually pretty good. 'Specially way back when. Could be a little tough in the summer time when it was warm but that only meant you had to go to the high country for your meat. The Queen provided for most of the people back in those days if you get my drift. Come about the end of March those corn fed ducks 'n geese were real tasty too. The occasional swan sometimes became part of the Menu for some people as I recall.
Now my Big Brother had a theory and one I subscribe to this day. I don't hunt anymore by the way. Don't really need to but would in a second if I had a need. Took a cravin' to Alberta Beef.
There was no eatin' before you went hunting with my brother Slim. No Siree! His theory was that; "You ain't huntin' if you ain't hungry". "Full belly just makes you lazy and takes the edge off". Christ I was always hungry!!
Saddle the horses, grab your scabbard and rifle and off you go. We might pack a little dry macaroni in our shirt pockets in case we were gone for a day or two. I would try to sneak a little something else of anything I could find around the Ranch which was usually Pretty slim pickin's. That's why we had to go huntin'.
Now I can honestly tell you I have eaten squirrels and even the occasional robin when desperate.
Damn….. would I like to have met and hunted with Michael and Chef Joe!
Now I gotta tell you about an incident that landed a friend of mine in Court for huntin' out of season and shooting a protected species. Back a decade or two ago people lived off the land for the most part and it was pretty well an accepted practice. But this guy was literally starvin' and in real desperate need.
He was observed by a Conservation Office to shoot a Bald Eagle and was in the process of pluckin' and preparing the bird for the skillet when he got busted by the Fish Cop. He had to go to Williams Lake for Court about a month later. This in itself created a hardship for people back then.
Anyways…. This guy goes to Court and the Crown enters their case against him. The Judge is more than a little perturbed and is ready to throw the book at this hard luck and desperate Chilcotin resident. He pointedly asked this Ole' Cowboy what he had to say for himself and wanted to know what justification or excuse he had for shooting such a rare and magnificent Bird of Prey.
Well the Ole Cowboy goes into his hard luck story and tells the judge how he had not eaten in days and that he had traveled for days after being lost in the bush, yadda, yadda, yadda. He was literally starving to death and the eagle was the only food he had chance to encounter in about a week. He would not normally shoot such a magnificent Bird but pure desperation drove him to it.
The Judge mellowed by the story of survival found the Ole Cowboy "Not Guilty" by reason of necessity and dismissed the case. Now the Ole Cowboy was about to leave and get back home and on his way out of the Court House when the Judge asked the old Timer one last question. "Tell me Ole' Timer; just what does a Bald Eagle taste like?" Without missing a beat the Ole Cowboy responds, "Kinda in between a Spotted Owl and a Whooping Crane."
Now most of the above is true so help me Christ. I may have fudged a little about some folks eatin' swans!
Have a great day.

Thanks John! John tells me Diana Phillips, Pan Phillips' daughter, is coming out with a book this fall called 'Beyond the Chilcotin'. It might be a good read for you folks interested in such.
Michael still has another article for me about the colours of the Chilcotin and I'll post it tomorrow if I can. It's nice getting outside stories to post on occasion because I don't have much to report here. Since I'm glued to the computer all day I don't get out much other than we picked up three slings of lumber today that had to be hand bombed off the trailer. Even then I froze my butt off.
We had a hard frost last night and it went down to about -8C or 17F. It never got much above 3C or 37F today, hence the snow. It looks like the south coast is going to get some really nice weather tomorrow and it looks like we're in for some serious crud. We'll see, I guess.
20/10/2008 7:02 PM

Coming To Nimpo

I'm delighted to reprint Michael's tale of his vacation in Nimpo Lake this fall, including his culinary adventures.
- "Taking a private chef with you on holidays has its pluses and its drawbacks.
Drawback no. 1: For several weeks prior to the holiday have to keep adjusting the daily menus. This takes some time thinking about all the great food you're going to eat.
Plus 1: Well, as many know, hunting means getting up early in the morning, so having Joe the Chef (this is not a take off on Joe the Plumber from the US Presidential debates), soft shake you awake at 4:45 A.M. has its merit. Then there is the realization as you wake; the heat is on, there is a smell of fresh coffee, a hint of bacon or ham or sausages in the air. Your clothes and or boots, which were wet from the previous day, were all hung and dry, kinda like Stockings by the Chimney. A cheery greeting as I stumbled into the cabin after starting the little Sammi. She needs time to warm up, just like real women.
There on the well set table was whatever I could think of or ask for.
The second drawback is having to make a decision at 4:50 A.M. as to what I wanted for lunch before I even had my morning coffee.
Plus 2: My choices were endless. Every kind of European sausage or cold meat, and of the vital leftovers from the night before. Every kind of bread known to this man. A spice selection that would make any merchant envious. I now know why we have to tow the little Sammi fully loaded. I mean Chef Joe had four large coolers and five cardboard boxes of supplies for the two of us for four weeks. Little did I know at that time while loading all these supplies that we or he was planning on some guests.
I thought it best to know the weight of what I was towing before entering the famous Fraser Canyon, so I drove over the commercial truck scale at Hope BC. My vehicle is licensed for towing 5500 pounds. The little Sammi, she weighs 2200 pounds dressed as she is and light on fuel. This time she gained 1900 pounds! Still within my legal limit. My comment to Joe was, "Are we carrying wood to Nimpo?!" But I digress and am getting away from the food.
Well after an 11 hour leisurely drive to Nimpo, Chef Joe agreed to let me treat him to a lovely dinner at the Dean. Sorry Donn, short of the BC Lions games and your wonderful large Gin and Tonics you did not see me again this trip!
After we were settled into the cottage our dinner menu consisted of; (And not in any order. Sorry folks my mind was not into recording each culinary delight.) We had, Pork tenderloin, beef tenderloins, roast prime rib, roast lamb, crown pork roast, fresh BC wild Salmon, fresh trout, lobster, pheasant, wild duck, venison, moose, and for a pre Thanksgiving we had turkey.
That night Chef Joe served 8 people in the little cabin. Well, even with a small propane range our Thanksgiving dinner consisted of hot, fresh, French bread, wild smoked salmon with onions, capers, and cream cheese, Caesar and bean salad, mashed potatoes, carrots, cooked and raw, fresh peas, stuffing, and turkey. I did not think there would be any room for dessert, but little did I know that Doris had made two kinds of desserts. So the pressure was on in more ways than one!
Surprisingly, I only gained 2 pounds in 4 weeks. Guess it was all that fresh air and endless trails looking for my 2008 moose. Wore off all that fantastic food.
I need to give a little credit to Josie, Joe's wife of many years. She made the most fancy desserts. Special walnut torte cakes with powerful icings. I do not suggest driving after eating any of this cake!
Oh, and Chef Joe does not stay in the cabin while the hunters go off into the woods. He comes along, hunts, cleans, packs, finds time to serve wonderful tailgate lunches, and still gets home in time to make and serve dinner.
Drawback number 3: Chef Joe is a back seat driver sitting in the front passenger seat equipped with a 7mm semi automatic Browning rifle.
He even helps with the dishes, but that job is mostly left up to Frank and I. My main job is to drive and serve drinks. Other than that "Cottage on Nimpo" isn't a bad place to stay when you're with the 'guys'.
Regards, Micheal" -

How come I never have a cook like that around when I go hunting?? Oh, yeah.....I am the cook.....and chief bottle washer...
I have more from Michael, to be posted in the near future.
It was a mixed bag weather wise today. It never dropped much last night and it actually got up to about 7C or 45 degrees Fahrenheit today with a very cool breeze. Still, when the sun did shine it was quite pleasant outside if you were working. We had a couple of squalls come over, one of which consisted of some wicked hail, but for the most part the storms hung around the mountain tops. At least we haven't gotten the snow I was far.

19/10/2008 7:30 PM

Fishing Nimpo

I'll continue Mike's story about his trip to Nimpo Lake this fall in tomorrow's blog. Today, I'm going to zip through the local weather updates and such.
We had a hard freeze again last night with it dropping to -8C or 17F but it was a jaw dropping night for stars. We were coming home from a Toy House Party at Charlotte Lake last night and it was beautiful and clear out.
Toy House Party you ask? did I. Our hosts had just completed a ham radio building this year as well as a Quonset. Daniel's shop is huge with plenty of room for all of his toys and ours too, for that matter. Hence the name Toy House. And what better reason to have a housewarming party than to celebrate the dry storage of a man's toys? I sure can't think of any. The company was great, and the potluck fabulous, but it sure gets dark early! We all headed for home because it felt so late but it was still actually early evening. Still, it was a super party and it was nice to see the Charlotte Lake bunch again. (I know, it sounds lake a gang, but really, they're not. :-)
We started out with a pretty day this morning and worked at getting some wood in but it kind of went down hill with the clouds moving in and a high of 4.4C or 40F. By this afternoon while out walking the dogs, I started to boogie as fast as possible where I was out in the open on the road because the wind was cold and my butt was freezing! In the woods it wasn't too bad other than the freeze thaw cycle after that last rain has made walking a pretty slimy affair. I was slip-sliding all over the trail in places.
Yesterday was a super day and had I not been busy inside, we would have gone fishing. It was fantastic yesterday from what we've heard from two sets of neighbours. There was a new hatch on so anyone using a fly was doing well.
I had someone up at Nimpo phone me and ask if I had a boat in front of my place. "Yes," I answered as I went to the front window and picked up my binoculars. "And the guy in it has a fish on at this very moment!" The caller had been concerned because from where she lives, she couldn't see anyone in the boat and was afraid there was someone overboard. I assured her that the owner of the boat was doing just winningly as I noticed the tip of his other fishing pole twanging toward the water as he worked to get the first fish in. I'd have paid anything to be out there right at that moment. I jealously watched big fish do slow rolls and little fish do high jumps for most of the afternoon and figured that with all the activity, there must have been some sort of new hatch of bugs.
The weather is looking a little ominous both outside and on the satellite picture on the TV tonight. I think we might be in for snow tomorrow. The temperature is supposed to stay pretty low and we've got a nasty, moisture filled low pressure system swinging in from the Pacific. Oh, joy. It's just as well, we've both got a huge chore list for the next couple of days but it's supposed to get nice Wednesday so maybe we can plan on fishing then. Unless Andy and the guys get a chance to go out fourwheeling then. Andy brought a quad home that he purchased from his brother and since it looks like new, I think he's eager to put some scratches and some mud on his new toy. I have to admit, it is a pretty thing and I look forward to sneaking it out for a ride sometime.

17/10/2008 2:30 PM

The Hunting Story

The Nimpo hunting story continued.
-"It was not until the next day when again I was on a favourite little road near Lillie Lake when I saw a man walking towards me. He was about 800 yards away on the side of a road where new growth pine trees were. This was my hunting partner, I thought, as I drove slowly towards him. We were going to rendezvous for lunch. Well this man turned out to be a black wolf. He was sitting and then just turned and went into the woods. I then realized that I wasn't 800 yards from him but about 200 as the curvature of the road accented his size against the skyline. This wolf was full grown and very large. I measured some of the trees where he stepped into the woods and his head was at least 4.5 feet from the ground.
I saw one more black wolf, also in the Lillie Lake area a week later. Smaller, but still of good size. By then I had learned from some local ranchers who were moving cattle to winter near their homes, that they had lost about 8% of their cattle this summer.
A week later while driving another small old logging road, I saw what I thought was a small black bear. It was early in the morning and the sun had not yet risen. I thought that maybe this was a cub or small young bear. When I drove closer what I did not realize is this bear was in a depression near the edge of the road and all I was seeing was its head, and shoulders. Well the bear heard my vehicle and was curious, so it sauntered up onto the road. I stopped! Face to face about 80 yards this bear decided to stand up and "see" what was coming. This bear balanced itself on its two hind feet and smelled the air, and I presume was gauging my "size". He was much taller than my Samurai. Much taller! I began to think about changing my convertible for a hard top. This bear just sauntered a few steps into the bush.
Later that same morning I came upon a small lake off of the Towdystan where there were at least 60 Canada Geese. Man were they ever spooky. I was deep in the forest in soft terrain and had not made any sound. I was just watching them when all of a sudden their honking and wings filled the air and they were gone. I never did see or hear what spooked them. Two days later I was on the Holtry road and again at a small lake over 1.5 miles by GPs from the road and the geese on this lake were gone before they would even give me a chance to raise my camera. I was so surprised to see their spookyness. I think the wolves have been preying on them too.
I had 4 wonderful weeks there. Most of it spent at my friend's cottage. He used to own CrazyBearLodge. But I stayed a few nights away at Stewart's as well. The hospitality of Duncan and Richard, the Stewart's chef, was again above many of the 5 star places I have stayed. It was nice to meet up with Tony and his wife from Washington State, both are avid fishers.
The weather was superb. Too hot really for hunting. While we did have a couple of cool mornings and one morning of snow at the 4500 foot level and above. It was more like summer. One day in particular around the 16th of September it was 108F in the sun on the porch. I had just returned from a days hunt near Tatla and was having heat exhaustion problems. Hunting without a shirt on and wool pants, I thought to myself, "I need to book Tee times in the future." I could not believe the thermometer on the porch at Nimpo. The one at the back of the cabin in the shade said 90F.
Swimming was in order and the water was refreshing. And no bugs!
One evening while sitting listening to the last of the BC Lions football game on my truck radio, maybe 10 o'clock at night, I heard what I thought were immature snow geese calls. Now I was sitting on a small knoll about three kilometers in on the Caribou Flats road, as I had been there during the afternoon to scan for moose and or deer.
I reached into my gun box and pulled out my snow goose caller. I tried a few soft calls and to my surprise the heaven opened up. For the next 30 minutes the sounds of thousands of Snow Geese passing overhead at high altitudes was quite a thing to hear. Today in Delta where I live there is about 30,000 of them having arrived and over the next few weeks the flock will peak at about 75,000. They winter here and in the Skagit Valley. Others carry on to the Sacramento Valley in California.
Fishing was unbelievable. Trout all day long on Nimpo lake. Smoked Trout is a gourmet's delight. Kappan Lake again was a lovely scenic lake to hunt around. But alas no game there. The road into the Precipice, was nicely maintained but same thing. No game.
Well after 4 weeks of hunting and with our little Sammi in tow we left Nimpo. I came home with one lovely deer, several trout, grouse, and many, many wonderful memories. My wallet some $1600 dollars lighter, but oh so worth it. I think I'll invest in Richard's well stocked store. See you in May!
Regards Michael" -

Thanks Mike! More coming on Michael's trip folks.
It rained all night last night but it dawned pretty, sunny and reasonably warm this morning. There's been mixed sun and cloud for most of the day but what breeze there is out there is warm and not unpleasant at all. Now if we could just have a few more months of

16/10/2008 4:31 PM


Yech! Doesn't begin to describe our weather today. I know the weathermen forecast this but it's still nasty. Heavy cloud this morning with a brisk and very cold wind. By noon it had started spitting and right now we're in the midst of a full blown rainstorm. So much for a walk today.
A visitor to Nimpo Lake this September has sent me a full report of his hunting trip here. It makes far more interesting reading than my whining about the weather with wolves and moose and all kinds of good stuff. Enjoy!

- "Dear Editor, well finally home and unpacked and all the dirty laundry done. So I figured I'd tell you about my 4 weeks at Nimpo.
Arrived September 8 with my moose permit in hand, all ready for the opening on the 10th. Saw two moose on the way in so figured this was my year! Day one, opening season, our little white Suzuki Samurai was all clean, fueled and ready to go. So up the Towdystan we went. Visited all the little nooks and crannies that we normally do on the first day to see if there is any sign. Was truly amazed at how little sign there was.
Stopped at the end of one of my favourite little roads and walked into a small lake. Sat and listened. Maybe 30 minutes and nothing, not a grunt, groan or call. Was a warm day, too warm I figured. So I started to walk around the little lake, which is about 2 kilometers in circumference. Thought I would see if any game had been frequenting the area. Had gone about 1/3rd the way around, when I saw the flash of the body of a moose, but it was strange, there was something black "hanging"underneath her. But it was hard for my eyes and brain to comprehend what I was seeing.
I instantly heard what sounded like horses' hooves on a paved cobblestone road. Loud and fast. I stepped out from behind a small knoll to see the cow moose run into the lake. Behind her were 4 adult wolves and three smaller, younger ones. The sight was like from a Walt Disney movie. The one wolf returned to the three younger ones and the other three swam after the moose. The second wolf returned to shore and ran along the shore of the lake right adjacent to the forest. Trying to stay out of sight of the moose, the two remaining wolves stayed in the water. As the moose pulled ahead of the wolves in the swimming department, the two remaining wolves also went ashore. They let the moose swim farther along the lake, and then they too began to run along the shore and disappeared into the forest. When the moose got to the end of the lake she went into the forest. Well the excitement was over I thought. But no, she was right back into the water at full speed with the three wolves behind her. Watching this made me loose track of the single wolf with the three little ones. So I slowly made my way back 250 yards to where I had first seen the moose and wolf.
They still had not realized that Joe and I were there. Joe could only see the three wolves as he was much farther down the lake.
I set my rifle down and with my binoculars began to watch the three wolves swim again after the moose. By now she was puffing some and one could hear the water in her lungs or throat. Two of the wolves went back to shore and set up positions near the edges of the lake. The other one and the three youngsters lay in ambush at the east end. The White lead wolf as I'll refer to him/her just kept the swimming pressure on the moose. Well, the lake has no shore line. It drops into deep water almost immediately. She could not stand and rest.
Not knowing about the wolves and the predation problem in the Nimpo area, and tempered by, "This is Mother Nature I am watching," I still had not taken any action to make my presence known to the wolves. But as I could clearly see the cow moose tire, I finally fired one shot into the water in the direction of the white wolf. Now I am no Davey Crockett, and the wolf was about 600 yards away, But the sound of the rifle and the column of water from the bullet sent a clear message, for immediately all the wolves looked at each other and were in full flight into the woods.
The cow moose stood as far as she could in the water from shore, a distance of about 500 yards from me and about 10 yards from shore. There she stood for a good 20 minutes before she carefully stepped into the forest and disappeared.
Michael Owen" -

Wow. Great story! There's more to the letter sent to me folks but I'll continue Michael's story tomorrow.
I've started a new week so you'll find last week's efforts at October Week Two.

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!

Follow the links, and see what the West Chilcotin is really like!
Two fishermen bundled up in yellow slickers on a flat lake.
Duck among reeds on Nimpo Lake.
Blue boat on Nimpo Lake.
Bright white moon rises over a cabin.
Floatplane takes off.
Pair of moose in a meadow.
This web site designed by Vector North Web Design