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Wilderness Adventures - March, Week 1/2014

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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07/03/2014 4:20 PM

Yahoo! Spring Has Sprung!

Starting this morning, spring has finally arrived!
It dropped to –17C or 1F last night but it did not take any time to warm up this morning at all. It had hit 5C by 10:30 this and so far I’ve seen a high of 7.7C or 45F today although the temperature is bouncing around within a three degree range with this system that’s coming in. The warm temperatures have brought high winds with them, our spring winds coming when they’re supposed to for a change, that help to carry off all the moisture created from melting snow and ice.
Our ground level winds have been coming out of the south and east today while you can see the clouds scudding along from the out of the west and higher still there are huge lenticular clouds dotting the sky. One of our part time neighbours was out skiing on the lake this morning but it would have been tough going out in that wind. More power to him.
It really is nice to be able to stand outside in a short sleeved shirt in a warm wind rather than bundled up and in a wind so cold it’ll peel the skin right off your face. I don’t care about too much wind today other than it means no walk because there is no way I’m walking in the woods with it howling out there, but we’ve kind of been doing a lot of running around anyway, so that’s okay. We had to do the milk run to Anahim and finished hanging pictures up at the newly opened restaurant in Nimpo. Andy is finally able to wash the new truck, which it needs desperately with all the mag and salt built up on it, but this has been the first warm day where he dares to do it. If you tried to wash the truck in those temperatures we had previously the doors and windows would be frozen shut until summer. And now that I’m back in my office, I finally get a chance to write a blog. It’s kind of cool to look out my office window and literally be able to watch the snow melt off of the roofs on the woodshed and cabin.
Yesterday four of us went out for a little snowmobile ride and I think it’s a good thing that we did. At this rate, I’m not sure how much longer good snowmobiling will last, although it does look like there’s a lot of fresh snow up on the mountains. Our neighbour, Dawn, wanted to see if we could get over to the Dusty Lake road from Lilly Lake on snowmobile and we did find the way, we just got turned around a few times, but that just made it more fun. We eventually hit Towdystan and crossed over to the Charlotte Lake road, down to the Hooch and came back Dot Island way across the lake. I have to say, it was certainly a pleasure to see the country from a little different perspective for a change. So often we go snowmobiling on the west side of the highway toward the Coast Mountain Range. It was nice to get up fairly high on the east side of the highway and get to look at the mountains from that elevation instead of being in their shadow. You get to see more of the bases of the mountains and views that we can’t see from our place. I used to hunt up in that area way back when and we’ve taken a drive up Dusty Lake road the odd time, but I’ve never been up there in winter before. As usual, with a blue sky and winter air, the mountains look like you can reach out and touch them.
We only covered 40 miles but that was actually more than we expected and since conditions were excellent, why not keep going?
Since it was one of those days you didn’t want to end, I managed to talk Andy and my other neighbour into breaking open our snowshoe trail on their snowmobiles and mine so that I can get the other snowmobile in there pulling the tracker for cross country skies. You know, even being conscious of the fact that a snowmobile is going to have to go over this trail when we first broke it with snowshoes, it’s still really tight in spots. It might not have been a good situation if the snow had been really deep because you had to slow down so much to poke between the trees, but if the tracks we put in yesterday set up, I might be able to pull a tracker over it without too much difficulty. However, I’m going to watch the weather here for a day or two first. There doesn’t seem to be much point in going to too much trouble if all the snow is going to melt really quickly. Looking at the forecast on Andy’s iPad last night, it looks like the temperature over the next two weeks is going to be above freezing during the day every day and not that cold at night. We don’t actually have a lot of snow on the ground, two feet at most, so if we get a big melt and no fresh snow, we’re pretty much done with the winter sports. We might get a little more snowmobiling in on the trails, but that’s about it.
I expect the warm weather means that the road bans will be on and most logging operations and hauling will be shut down here and thoughout the Cariboo in the next week or two. When we get cold weather right up until this late in the season, it usually means a fast warm up and one big, icy, muddy, watery mess everywhere. That’s okay. It’s Break Up. Hopefully our ice road will hold up for the next month until our gravel road dries out. Less ruts for the summer, that way.
But when we get weather like this, overflow is more than possible and that will probably take out the ice road.
Well, it’s still an amazing 4.6C or 40F out there tonight but the wind is howling like a beast, the tree tops are whipping around at a pretty good rate and the roof on the house is doing a little groaning and creaking. I think I’ll shut my computer down before bed tonight. There’s always the possibility of a power outage in this kind of wind. As long as the wind and temperatures hold, it will continue to melt throughout the night. All we need now is rain to really take the snow down. Oh, geez, did I say that out loud? The snowmobilers will skin me alive! My other half will want to do the same because I get to celebrate the clocks turning ahead this weekend, which he hates because he loses the morning light. But I would much rather gain the light in the evening, my favorite time of day, and naturally, I get to rub it in. Yahoo!! Happy Daylight Savings Time everyone…. Except for those of you that live in Saskatchewan and Arizona, of course.

Last week's blog is at February Week Four.

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!
Three snowmobilers on the trail looking at the mountains.
A snowmobiler in blue jacket rides down the trail.
A cross country skier on Nimpo Lake.
Two mountains soar above Nimpo Lake and the trees.
Button leading to The Chilcotin Facebook Page.
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