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 - Oct., Week Three/2013
you would like to see pictures of wildlife, mountains, lakes,
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Check out the Picture
of the Day.
No Snow Yet!
So far our weather is hanging in there with a bit of a
change today. Actually, the weathermen called for
rain and snow today for most of the province but it hasnt
materialized yet, thankfully.
Yesterday I rushed around trying to do the last minute
stuff including finally digging my carrots out of the
raised box I had them in before they got snowed on. I
guess it was a good thing I decided to get to it yesterday
because Im not sure I could have gotten them out
today. I had been covering the box with a quilt every
night and Im glad I did because the center was still
okay but around the edges of the box the soil had already
frozen solid around the carrots. We had 9C or 15F
degrees overnight two nights running so small surprise.
I still have to get them washed up and put away for the
winter but for last night I bundled them into a wheelbarrow
under a quilt in the garage until I could get to them.
I still have tomatoes in the greenhouse and two
little heaters running just to keep them until I can get
to them as well which will happen in the next
day or so. We dont need to pay an electric bill
for the greenhouse for any length of time, but Ive
been giving lots away and soon the numbers will be manageable
enough that I can pick the rest and do something with
them. Besides, one of our neighbours has said shell
take some even if theyre green, ripen them up and
put them down in her freezer for the winter to avoid buying
the canned ones.
On Monday I put in three more posts for the new dog pen
and had no problem with digging the holes with the post
hole digger. Yesterday I put in another three posts and
had to dig out the first four inches with a maddock
before I could even touch the ground with a post hole
digger, thats how much of a change there
was in just one night. Things have finally cooled off
enough that the ground is freezing up. It also didn't
help that we finally have moisture in the ground down
the first few inches which will now freeze but its
dry as a bone beneath that. We got a full half inch of
much needed rain the other night but its not enough.
Im pulling dry dust out to two feet down with the
post hole digger. It might be a little tough on trees
and shrubs this winter without more moisture in some form
Surprisingly, the temperature nearly made it to
9C or 48F yesterday, about six degrees higher than the
two days before that. There was sun and mixed
cloud, it was calm, and turned out to be a great day to
work outside. We arent fairing quite so well today.
It was cloudy last night so I dont think it actually
got below freezing down here on the lake and it was sunny
this morning, but it has clouded over, its up to
7.7C and it looks like it wants to start raining or snowing.
Andy has one more excavator to low bed down off of Charlotte
Main and hes done up there, just in time, I think.
It looks like the snow is already starting to fly in the
There was snow up in the mountains the day after the last
blog post but it has mostly melted on the lower mountains,
although theres still a skiff on the Itcha Ilgatchuz
ranges. Theres some snow on the really big mountains
in the Coast Range to the south of us but still not nearly
so much as you would expect this time of year. The inversion
seems to have ended a couple of days ago so temperatures
at higher elevations are finally colder than down here.
Snow will stick now if it comes. Still, this is the end
of October and its just amazing that the ground
is clear and only now just freezing, that I still have
green lawns, and Im just now putting my vegetable
garden to bed. Crazy.
Hey, we finally got some pictures from the Halloween
dance up at the community hall last week. We put
the call out to some friends and so far our neighbour
Lane has been able to email us one and our friend Dawn
graciously gave me some to download onto my computer after
reading that I had no photos for the blog. Thanks, guys!
Description and photo credits on mouse rollover. Oh, and
if you want to see us you have to go to Picture
of the Day
I know its been a while again, folks, but it has
to be close to ten days now that we have had just stunning
weather! The sun has been shining every day with rarely
even a single cloud in the sky and temperatures
have averaged anywhere from 12C to 16C and it even hit
18C or 64F a couple of days. That may not seem
very warm but the few weeks before that were overcast
and decidedly chilly so we got so used to cooler weather
that these temperatures seem downright balmy!
It has been pretty cool at night with temperatures well
below freezing many nights so Ive had to run a heater
in my greenhouse because its still full of tomatoes.
I only let them stay because the weathermen kept forecasting
that this high pressure system was going to move in and
hang out for a while bringing lots of sunshine and for
a change, they were right.
Im glad I kept them in there because theres
been more tomatoes ripening on the vine for the past week
than I can even give away. Last night looks like
it was a little rough on them though. It had clouded over
early this morning after a frosty night so that by the
time I went in there around noon the plants were all huddled
up and I think some fruit close to the glass got a touch
of frost. I threw another heater in there this evening
in the hopes that well get some more sun this week
that'll keep them going. Otherwise, it will be time to
pull them out and do something with them. Right
now its raining out there and it hasnt gotten
above 3C or 37F all day so it might be time.
While Im a little depressed at losing our sun and
nice, warm temperatures this weekend, I am actually pleased
to see the rain. We really need it because everything
is just super dry. The ground is wet from the frost every
morning and the grass and plants are all getting by on
the morning dew, but I actually started watering my perennials
a couple of days ago because I was afraid they wouldnt
make it through the winter. I was going to start watering
lawns over the next few days but now I dont have
to so thats one chore struck off the list.
Weve managed to get out fishing three times
in the past ten days and did we ever do well.
We came up only one short of our limit in the space of
about an hour and a half the first time out and we lost
lots! We got several to the boat but they shook off before
we could bring them in and one of them took my favourite
fly. I didnt have another like it so we had to put
on a green fly with a gold eye and did it ever kill them
and they were big and fat to boot! I got my last fish
for limit just as we were heading in but lost it bringing
it into the net and we couldnt stay out any longer
because we had to go to Thanksgiving dinner.
A couple of days later we looked out into our bay to see
two different sets of neighbours in their boats fishing
to beat the band. I told Andy we had to get out
there before they caught all the fish so away we went.
It was another warm, calm day so we cruised past the neighbours
dragging our flies while we watched them pull in fish
after fish. They limited out and went in but they must
have gotten all the big ones because we got lots of fish,
but they werent the monsters that we had been catching
a few days before that. After an hour and a half we had
all the fish that we wanted to keep for that day and since
it was cooling off, we went in. They were still great
fish and we would have considered them big for fish in
the spring but for fall, they werent huge by any
means. I dont know what was different about that
day because last Sunday we went out for our a couple more
and got four beauties so we were back into big fish again.
Sadly, the first fish on my line took my killer
green fly so I had to go to a different one and it didnt
do quite as well but we were happy. Besides, it
was another sunny, warm, calm day and theres no
nicer place to be than out on the lake fishing where you
cant do chores.
means of course that we still have a lot of stuff we could
be doing this fall but its just not happening. Andy
has been working driving truck and running his Bobcat
for other people and Ive been forcing myself to
stay inside at least part of most days to work on calendars.
I dont think my clients would be pleased if I decided
to go kibitzing outside rather than work on their stuff,
although I have been trying to do a little of both.
We still have loons both at this end and the north end
of Nimpo Lake, all of them babies of varying sizes trying
to get their wings strong enough to take off before ice
up. The first time we went out fishing I could hear
this godawful racket coming from over in the bay and finally
realized it was a young loon learning how to call.
He sounded like a rusty gate hinge and nothing like a
loon should but he worked at it all afternoon without
any improvement at all. Ive heard the youngsters
off and on since and they have varying degrees of croak
but no actual loon calls yet although one is starting
to find his voice a bit.
Im afraid one of them wont make it out
this year. There seems to be a pair of siblings
with one almost adult size and the other tiny. While we
were out fishing the bigger one would swim past us and
the whole while the little one circled around and around
him staying as close as he possibly could and looked almost
like he was trying to climb up on the others back
like they do with their parents when theyre little
babies. At first I was afraid that they were both
entangled in fishing line and so couldnt separate
but a little while later we saw the same pair and the
little guy was farther afield so I dont know what
was up with the constant circling. One evening a day later
over at the neighbours we could see them down on the water
from the fire pit where we were all seated, and the two
had been joined by another in between their size. Its
good to see three of them joined up for company and protection,
but I just dont think little guy is going to bulk
up enough to make it out of here before freeze up in five
to six weeks. I hate the idea of that. As usual I dont
want to see a loon frozen into the ice waiting to be eaten
alive by an eagle.
Amazingly, there is still no snow up in the mountains
and while Andy has been working up on Charlotte Main off
and on in the past couple of weeks, the temperature has
been much warmer up there than down here indicating that
there has been an extreme temperature inversion. I think
thats what has caused all of the fog down on the
Lower Mainland and in a lot of valley communities throughout
BC for the past week or so. The weathermen were
gloating over the fabulous weather Vancouver was going
to get but day after day, all they could show on their
tower cam was fog so dense, you couldnt see the
city. They had lots of interesting photos sent
in by viewers that got above the fog and could look down
on the city hidden in the blanket, but that was about
it. Bummer for them. Thankfully, we didnt get fog
more than once or twice in the early morning, even though
we havent had any breeze for a week or so. Who knows
what will happen over the next few days though with all
of this new moisture and cold temps coming our way. We
could be blanketed in fog for the next week or so like
I do expect to see snow up on the mountains by tomorrow
morning. Thats okay. Its nearly the
end of October and I think this is the latest I have ever
seen bare mountains in this region. Its sure weird!
You can see from the photo up on the top right just how
amazing this fall has been. That is our neighbour
standing in Goat Pass next to Goat Lake where we go snowmobiling
in winter. Alex and Iris hiked for over two hours
up the steep trail to get up there so they must have been
moving pretty hard and fast. They said the hike was gorgeous
and the alpine a perfect spot for a picnic. I envy them
the hike and it just went on my to do list for next year.
It will have to be in the fall of course because in the
spring there will be too much snow and the summer would
be viciously buggy up there so hopefully
. next fall
will be long, nice and dry because I would really love
to see it up there when its not under five or more
feet of snow. Thanks for the photo, guys!
I can say one thing for sure
. This nice spell
has sure come at a good time and it will help to shorten
up winter considerably. I was getting concerned
with our lousy weather in the last half of September and
first half of October. A short or nasty fall sure makes
for a long, long winter but weve definitely cut
a break this year.
We went to the community Halloween dance last night. We
dressed up for the first time ever and it was pretty cool
to see the reactions of everyone in the Hall when we walked
in because they had no clue who it was. It was really
a hoot. I just wish I had photos. It took us so long to
get ready and get food done to take over that we were
about an hour and half late and I forgot to take a camera.
Its a shame because lots of people dressed up. More
and more people are dressing up every year and some of
the costumes are really awesome. Im hoping to get
photos from people that did have cameras and if I do,
Ill post them here.
Last week's blog is at October
Lake Highway cam looking West.
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!