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 - West Chilcotin Blog
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of the Day.
And We Made It To December!
has been a month again since the last blog but frankly,
not a lot of great, exciting things has happened in that
month so you havent missed much.
In the last blog we were in the middle of a two
day snowstorm that left us with nearly two feet of snow
on the ground and a lot of slush floating in Nimpo Lake.
By the next morning after the storm the sun came out to
all the trees branches bent under the weight of the snow
and Nimpo Lake was frozen solid.
Im really hoping that the young loons got off the
lake the day before.
We spent the next few days shovelling or ploughing snow
and Andy had to get up on the roof of our trailer port
and spend a couple of days getting it cleared of two feet
of the white stuff before it had time to harden up.
There was a lot of snow built up on the trees for at least
a week until we got a warm spell and a full day
of rain if you can believe it, some of it driving sideways
for some time. The end result was that the snow
settled to about half and the rain took all the snow off
of the lake ice. It wasnt bad where the slush had
newly frozen without only about four inches of snow on
it, but all the south arm including our back bay had been
frozen for weeks and the ice was bending under all that
heavy snow. I was really worried that we were going
to have overflow for the rest of the winter which would
prevent us putting in an ice road. So that little
warm up and all that rain did wonders, even if it did
make everything deadly slippery around here until we got
another little layer of snow that stuck.
With the ice cleared right off it started growing again
and Andy and I went out just before Christmas to auger
several holes and get an idea of the depth of the ice.
It was 11.5 inches everywhere the ice road would
go with 14.5 inches close to either shore so Andy promptly
put in an ice road!
I was in town through the first week of December in meetings
and it was just a mess in there because they got that
big dump of snow as well. You could barely move because
the streets were rutted up and slushy snow was everywhere.
It started to warm up the day I left and I guess they
got two days of rain and several days of warm temperatures
because my sister sent me a picture of their green lawn
and not a speck of snow to be had anywhere.
She likes to rub that kind of thing in. I hope they had
a green Christmas!
We still have about eight inches of snow on the
ground with a good base and its snowing right now
so the snowmobilers have been having lots of fun.
I put a cross country ski track in and was really excited
to go out the next day after it set up and go skiing.
Nearly every bit but about 50 feet in total had been wiped
out by snowmobiles in just one day. That was a week ago
so Ive decided that Im not going to even think
about setting anymore trail until after next weekend when
New Years is over and all the visitors to the area
have gone home. Then maybe a new trail will last for more
than half a day.
Bad weather, cold weather and the holidays have conspired
to keep me home rather than out walking every day but
Ive gone out the past two days just because if I
dont start moving I might as well just go find a
cave until spring.
It has been overcast a LOT this winter with very
little sun so its been hard to make myself go outside.
Especially since we have only seen one day barely above
freezing in weeks. Most of the time it has been pretty
chilly which I can deal with if theres sun but without
While the winter has so far been generally cold
weve only had one night that went right to 40 below
so far but it looks like were in for another arctic
blast starting about Monday. Its been strange
but while the rest of the central and southern part of
the province has had above freezing temperatures for a
couple of weeks, weve been back to our traditional
. Colder than everywhere else. Even
the north has seen warmer temperatures than us so I guess
last years wonderful winter was just an anomaly.
So much for global warming!
I hope everyone had as good a Christmas as we did. Ours
was terrific even though we had to use our poor
little one foot mini fake tree this year. There
has been lots of hoarfrost this winter and with that frozen
on top of snow on the tree branches, you would have had
a tough time picking out a tree because the snow would
never have knocked off. The holidays kind of snuck up
on us and we figured that by the time we waded around
in the snow, found a tree that might or might not be a
good one, gave it a couple of days to thaw the snow off
of it in front of the fire and then get it up and decorated,
it would be about two days before Christmas, and then
it would just have to come down. So we dragged out our
little Charlie Brown tree from out of its skinny little
box, pushed down the branches, threw the one foot long
piece of tinsel we still have for it and a few of the
little mini decorations because it already has lights,
and called it good. It actually looked great, especially
in the dark! :-)
There are a lot of people out visiting this year, or certainly
a lot of people that I dont recognize and loads
of snowmobilers around. Quite a few people have
been ice fishing on the lake and it sounds like the fishing
is just awesome! Leah from up at the store was
saying that most of the trout are around a pound and a
half but that Richard pulled out a big fat one the other
day that shes pretty sure was over two pounds. Thats
pretty amazing for this lake at this time of year.
I was talking to a resort owner that thinks we may have
the quota raised on our lake for next year and we sure
do need to! There are way too many fish and not enough
feed for them so I think we need to get a letter writing
campaign going here and see if we cant push this
through. This lake has been way underutilized for
about 10 years now and the fish are just going to get
smaller and skinnier from lack of food unless we can get
more people out there fishing.
Our rabbit population seems to be way up this year. When
I have gone walking there have been tracks everywhere!
In contrast, Im actually not seeing a lot of squirrel
sign around but it may have been too cold and the snow
too deep for them. The otters have been traipsing
around through the back woods again, finding little hills
here and there that they can slide down. I heard
some caribou had been spotted nearby about a week ago
but hopefully theyll be long gone by now before
theyre shot for potlatch. There are a lot of coyote
and fox tracks in the woods but no wolf tracks yet. I
watched the same coyote working his way across different
parts of the lake ice for several days in a row. Like
the ravens, I think that he was finding goodies to eat
caught in the slush when it froze ranging from small fish
to bugs, or maybe freshwater shrimp.
UPDATE: DECEMBER 31
We have been out of Internet service since just after Christmas and came home tonight to find it up so I'm going to try to get this uploaded as quickly as possible before it goes down again. But for just a quick update, the New Year's Ice Party is going on, the moon is shining brightly, and though our temperatures have been dipping to -30C in the past few days, tonight it is only -9C or 16F. In fact it's warmer now than it was an hour ago so hopefully our cold spell is over. I just hope we get to keep the sunshine that came with the warm weather. It's been just awesome to finally see sun and clear blue skies again!
Happy New Year's Everyone and our very best wishes from our home to yours for 2015!!!!
Don't forget that you can find regular updates on the
Facebook page at Facebook/TheChilcotin.
Best Wishes for 2015!
last blog is at November
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!