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Wilderness Adventures - September Week One

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' - just go into Archives on the lower left side of this page.
09/09/2005 7:47 PM

Ducks Unlimited

I'll be keeping it short today with a new week tomorrow. Should have started a new page today but got tangled up in playing catch-up after my company left. I let a lot of things slide, including all the newsletters I read to try to keep up on the latest and greatest in Internet marketing. I did want to mention though that the Ducks Unlimited Banquet and Auction hosted by Wilderness Rim Resort on Nimpo Lake this past Sunday was a real success. They were having a live auction as well as a silent auction and raffles. There were lots of limited prints, sculptures, cast bronze images, and some pretty handy items like outdoor fireplaces and stools, among other things. Tabby Reid of Wilderness Rim put on a dinner of fresh halibut caught just out of Bella Coola, with wild rice and other goodies. Local resorts and businesses from both Anahim Lake and Nimpo Lake donated cash to go toward framing the prints, as well as some pretty nice gifts for raffle. Those attending were pretty generous with their pocket books. Only about 60 people attended but the day long affair raised $20,000 for Ducks Unlimited. We were supposed to go to the event but that was the day we went to Bella Coola and you can blame those grizzly bears for us being too late getting back to Nimpo Lake to attend. Much as I might have liked to go to the banquet, I honestly don't think I would have missed seeing those grizzly bears on the Atnarko River for anything. Neither would our company from Saskatchewan. They will probably never see anything like that again. The best gifts in the world are Nature's.
08/09/2005 7:22 PM

The Bella Coola Fall Fair

Small in numbers but lots of color. While down in Bella Coola on Sunday, we stopped in at the Bella Coola Fall Fair. It wasn't a huge affair, but it looked fun and well organized. There was a train ride for kids, game booths, lots of balloons and games for young adults and up. There was log cutting, axe throw for both men and women and the pillow fight. That was kind of interesting looking. They would sit a couple of women or teen aged girls up on a log facing each other armed with gunny sacks full of who knows what. Foam or cotton maybe. And then they would have a pillow fight. Not a simple thing to do when you are balancing on a log and someone across from you is doing everything they can to knock you off. There were a couple of guys standing there to catch anyone that fell off or got knocked off and a good thing too. I watched a few girls take headers that might have resulted in serious injury otherwise. The displays were interesting. Some great vegetable, flower and canning entries in the fair. Also things like quilts, crochet, knitting and crafts. What really caught my eye was some of the artwork. One piece in particular was really something special. It was a large watercolor of a brown or chocolate lab waiting just inside the kitchen door next to a pair of waders with the sun reflecting through the windows behind him onto the tile floor. Called "Going Fishing" it was just an awesome painting! I really wish I had taken better note of the artist because I sure would be interested in purchasing a painting like that.
07/09/2005 2:22 PM

The Merits of Always Carrying a Camera

It always amazes me what pictures I miss when I don't have a camera. Sometimes I think I should just tie my camera around my neck and leave it there. Yesterday we drove to Williams Lake on business. On the way a coyote crossed the road very slowly and would have offered a great picture. Better yet was a beautiful Mule Deer buck with a glorious set of antlers waiting patiently by the highway for traffic to go by so he could cross. It would have made a great picture, but alas, I forgot to take my camera with me. Today, an Osprey flew off of Nimpo Lake and right over my head with a rainbow trout in his claws. Not often you can hope to get a picture like that, but I didn't have my camera outside with me because I was doing chores. A great disappointment to me because I would like to be able to post images like that with these articles just to show readers and vacationers how blessed we are with birds and wildlife in this region. I am going to post a picture of one of the rivers in Bella Coola, however, in the hopes that you can spot the salmon in the river. It just shows how crystal clear the water is here. I am also putting in an image of a huge glacier in the mountains that guard the Bella Coola Valley. Enjoy.
06/09/2005 9:27 PM

Bears and Bald Eagles

A super day continued. Aside from seeing little lady black bear and her cub twice...both going and returning from Bella Coola, and the grizzly bears, it was a great trip in other ways as well. We were actually looking to fish for, or purchase a salmon for our Saskatchewan friends. We stopped at the Fisheries Pool on the Atnarko River and on a bridge on the Saloompt River Road where we watched Pink Salmon struggling upstream on both rivers. I think they are pretty near the end of their run and looking pretty rough and ragged as most salmon do that late in the season. It was my hope that the Coho had just started and since I had a license, could fish for them. But although we did see one tired and lonely Chum in the crystal clear water, I didn't see any Coho Salmon. So we went to a place that supposedly sells fresh seafood. Wouldn't you know it? A closed sign for the Labour Day weekend. On we go to Bella Coola to the marina. The tide was obviously in and the salt flats were covered in a combination of ocean water and green glacial water from the high running rivers. A lone Bald Eagle perched on a stump in the tidal water surveying his kingdom. On the way back from the Marina and just around a corner before the Bella Coola townsite, our friend pointed out a waterfall in the bushes. So we backed up the truck and sure enough, you could just catch a glimpse of a curtain of water deep in the dark through the leaves of trees and bushes. What a find that was! This hidden waterfall right along the highway was absolutely spectacular! Like some serene and secret grotto with only a faint path to it through the green. Anywhere else, a touristy resort would somehow have incorporated it into a hotel, or someone would be selling tickets to see it, but here in the Bella Coola Valley, waterfalls are so common that there isn't even an arrow or sign pointing to it. What a magical place!
05/09/2005 11:36 AM

Grizzly Bears

A trip to Bella Coola yesterday yielded some great pictures! We have friends out from Saskatchewan that really wanted to see Tweedsmuir Park and Bella Coola. Both also wanted to see a bear. We got a real bonus because first thing in the morning we saw a small black bear and her cub eating berries on the side of the highway and she wasn't bothered in the least by us. But the really exciting part of the day was on the way home going by the Atnarko River just before you head up the hill, one of our friends yelled that he saw a grizzly bear on a rock in the river. We weren't sure he was seeing right, but on backing up the truck, sure enough, it turned out he had great eyes. We watched and took pictures for awhile, then backed up a little further to see if we could get a better view of the bear, and lo and behold, there were two large grizzly cubs sunning themselves on a rock nearby the adult. More pictures. We weren't all that close, but although they watched us, none of the bears seemed that uncomfortable about our presence. Then we watched as the mother grizzly jumped into the river, caught a salmon, then back onto the other bank to eat it. Unfortunately, she moved so fast, none of us got a decent picture of the event. Then back in she went fishing some more, and eventually back out on her rock. Even though she was a really big animal, you could tell from the way she was being pushed around that the current in the river was pretty strong. My biggest regret is that we didn't carry the 35mm camera with the telephoto lens with us, or even a camcorder. This was just an incredible event, but all any of us had were digital cameras and in the case of mine, it focused on the leaves of the trees in front of the bears rather than the bears so most of my pictures were pretty disappointing when they should have been spectacular. Unfortunately, we don't go down into the valley very often so we witnessed a pretty rare event and it might be a long, long time before we get that lucky again. But I'll post the pictures that did turn out somewhat so you can see for yourself. Because I have had company, I haven't written any articles for the last few days but last week's articles can be found at August4


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!
Train for the kids at the Fair
 
Balancing on logs while having a pillow fight with gunny sacks at the Fair
 
A huge glacier above the Bella Coola Valley
 
Pink Salmon swarm in the rivers in Bella Coola
 
A black bear mother and cub eat berries by the road
 
A curtain of greenery nearly obscures a beautiful waterfall
 
Hidden in a deep green grotto, water falls into a clear, green pool
 
A Bald Eagle sits on a stump in the middle of high tide in Bella Coola
 
Two grizzlies face to face on the Atnarko River
 
Two grizzly cubs sit on a rock in the Atnarko River
 
Two nearly grown grizzly cubs on the Atnarko River
 
A large Grizzly sow watches for salmon from a rock in the middle of the Atnarko River
 
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