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Wilderness Adventures - Dec., Week 3/2012

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 some great contributed stories and ongoing blogs, just go into Archives on the lower left side of this page.

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20/12/2012 9:20 PM

Doomsday, Anyone?

I don’t know about you guys but I’ve just about had it with the Doomsday stuff.
The other night we were watching the news and one of the less smart of the newscasters that we watch talked about December 21st and the end of the world that the Mayans had predicted.
No they didn’t.
Where are these people getting this stuff from? You know, I can see a media outlet like Entertainment tonight or a rag like the Enquirer reporting that the end of the world is going to be on December 21st because the Mayan civilization predicted it but a news outlet? Come on! Doesn’t anyone do any research any more?
From everything I’ve ever read, seen, heard or studied, the Mayan calendar never predicted the end of the world. Some scholars with a still undeveloped grasp of Mayan hieroglyphics misinterpreted the calendar believing at the time that it indicated prophecies of the future. The hippies and apocalypse types caught on to the misunderstanding in the early 1960’s and it became a part of their culture, and lately Internet culture, all based on something being translated incorrectly. Kind of like the translation of the Hebrew word for young woman being mistaken to mean virgin….A whole religion is based on that little misstep now. Hmmm.
As I understand it from several science pages, the Mayan calendars, of which there are many, are based on cycles, with each cycle lasting so many days or years, depending on the calendar. Just as our annual calendar is based on 365 days, one of their calendars also tracks a solar year of 365 days. They have shorter calendars based on pregnancies, for example, and longer ones, the longest of which is 5,126 years.
The Mayan civilization flourished from 2000 B.C. to 1000 A.D. Their longer calendar is based on 394 year cycles and we are presently in the 13th of those cycles since the beginning of the Mayan ‘creation story’ 5,126 years ago. That cycle ends Friday, December 21, 2012.
It is estimated by archaeologists and experts on the Mayan culture that like the other Mayan calendars, this one was intended to roll over to the next calendar period, just as our annual calendar rolls over from December to January of a new year. That's the sum total. No apocalypse. No Doomsday. No End of Days.
Now the scientists could be wrong. I guess we might all wake up dead tomorrow. :-) But I don't really believe it.
I suppose we’ll just have to see. In the meanwhile, television certainly has some interesting shows on right now espousing all kinds of interesting theories!
I can actually buy a few of them.
I suppose that a solar blast from the sun always has been and always will be a danger to earth, mostly unpredictable and entirely unmanageable. In other words, not a single, solitary thing we can do about it. A massive solar flare could disrupt satellite communications and power grids for a short time or a long time. A world wide disruption for a long period of time could definitely cause a breakdown in civilized behavior around the globe. 2013 is at the peak of the solar cycle of 11 years so if nothing else, we will see some great northern lights next year.
The asteroid, meteor theory isn’t just a theory. Onecould impact the earth in the same manner that the Yucatan Peninsula meteor did, pretty much wiping out most species on earth. However, that we can see coming and who knows, maybe we can even affect its path. At this point in time, it doesn’t look like we’re in any danger from space debris nor will we be any time soon.
There’s no question that the human race could be in danger from a disease epidemic, either by accident but more likely spread by terrorists. Nuclear weapons and epidemics probably weren’t that much of a danger in the past 20 years but with the terrorist networks thriving in the Middle East, the fanatics in the same place, and the just plain crazy in North Korea, those two threats have definitely moved up the scale of things that could cause a problem to human civilization.
In the end, I think that we are probably going to see the biggest impact from something that is happening and that’s climate change. I won’t argue whether it’s Mother Nature or humanity’s fault because you’ve all read my opinion on that score and we may be past the tipping point now anyway, so it may be too late to worry about "who's" fault it is.
I guess you could say that climate change is also the most certain big thing to happen to humanity in the future. There is no question that it will impact us, particularly poor developing countries, it’s just a matter of…. How much? Will climate change speed up exponentially as scientists have shown in the past? And if so, how fast and can species on the planet adapt quickly enough? I guess if it was bad enough then climate change could definitely fit into the doomsday predictions, but that’s one that is definitely not going to happen tomorrow! So unless I’ve missed something here, we should all be safe in our beds tonight, unless we freeze to death, of course... because our weather is cold!
The only thing that is going to occur tomorrow for sure, is the shortest day. Thank goodness the days will finally start to get longer now!
The night before last the temperature dropped to –25.9C or –15F and never got above –8C or 17F during the day. Last night it dropped to –19.2C or –2F but rose a degree before I went to bed. It climbed up pretty good early this morning and then dropped back to –10C at sunrise and though it struggled, never made it up past –6C today. The sun did fight its way through cloud today and that helped to warm things up a little, but it just didn’t last that long and of course, the sun is pretty watery with little strength this time of year. I think what’s most irritating of all is that day after day we’re lucky to see any sun at all, and yet every bloody night it clears off and gets cold without exception. It’s nuts!
We have about four inches of snow on the ground now. We accumulated another couple of inches of fluffy stuff yesterday and this morning but it’s far less than many other areas in the province got. I think Williams Lake got about a foot and some areas in the Okanagan got the same. My nephew is down in the Kootenays at Grand Forks where they got a foot and a half in one go. He’s complaining bitterly because he and his girlfriend just moved down there this fall and were told the area got little snow. Apparently this is the most snow Grand Forks has gotten in 10 years and he’s furious. Vancouver got hit as well and we watched bumper cars on the news yesterday. That always improves my mood. Although I won’t laugh too loud this year because we’re going to be down there over the holidays and the Lower Mainland can have nasty roads at this time of year. We’re hoping for clear weather when we go through.
Just a reminder to everyone that the New Year’s Ice Party is apparently going to be held again this year. Andy and I won’t be here and so won’t be running around like chickens with our heads cut off organizing things. That’s in someone else’s lap now and I’m looking forward to the break from it for a change. I feel like I can finally enjoy Christmas and the holidays for the first time in four years. We’re lucky enough to have scored a house and dog sitter so we can get away and go do something cool. So if you don’t hear from me in the next couple of weeks, that will by why. Mind you, it might also be because I can’t get on the Internet. Our Internet went down several days ago so we ordered a part that our provider thought we needed. It came out on the freight this morning but for some strange reason, our Internet had decided to start working again all on its own, also this morning. I’ve decided to try and get this blog up just in case it goes out again and I can’t get another posted.
Today Andy put in the ice road from our boat launch to the public boat launch across the bay with the new snow plow on my old truck and it worked like a hot darn! In fact, he hadn’t widened the road completely when here came a Telus commercial van tootling across the lake on the new ice road right past Andy. He told me about it and I just couldn’t believe it. There’s at least 10 inches of ice out there but still, the ice road is brand new. Most people give it a day or so. It was kind of cute, actually. I wonder if he knows that his company’s fleet insurance probably doesn’t cover his van if he goes through? Maybe he's better off not knowing. :-)
Before leaving off and just in case I don't get a chance to post another blog, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a wonderful holiday from our family to yours, and our very best wishes for 2013. Merry Christmas, everyone!!!

Merry Christmas card

This is the start of a new week so you'll find last week's blog at December Week Two

Anahim 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!

Follow the links, and see what the West Chilcotin is really like!
The cat with a Christmas hat.
White truck and plow pushing up snow for an ice road on Nimpo Lake.
Nimpo Lake on the darkest day.
Doing circles with an ATV on lake ice.
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