Aventuras en British Columbia

South from Watson Lake.  Enter BC.  I know it’s silly but somehow, in the back of my head, I expect it’s going to look completely different,  I should know better.

Weather continues same as through the Yukon.  Getting progressively warmer, but I seem to be always racing ahead of a storm.  Fewer fall colors now

I pass a sign proclaiming the best cinnamon rolls in the Milky Way galaxy.  Not in BC, not in Canada, not on earth.  In the galaxy.  Challenge accepted.

I’m pleased to report that the Tetsa River Lodge may indeed have the best cinnamon rolls anywhere.

Occasional animal life.  Moose.  Caribou.  Lots of smaller wildlife.  No bears.  Haven’t seen a bear since Denali.

Other things.  Pass a sign proclaiming “the longest town in…”  A strange thing to advertise.  I pass the town.  Not much to speak of.  They are grasping at straws I suppose.

Beautiful night camping on a lake.  No camp host, no drop box for payment.  Sign proclaims it’s $20/night.  But no way to pay.  I appreciate the free night.  $20 is one more day in Ecuador.  Sunset is beautiful,  I interrupt dinner several times to capture the changing light.   At sunrise, tent is covered with thick ice.  The result of camping 10 feet from a lake when the temperature just hits freezing overnight.

Next night.  Searching for another spot.  Want to be away from highway for the first time.  Hoping for a night with no car noise,  sign for campground 15 miles off highway.  Perfect.  Turns out to require 8 miles of mud navigation.  Lake is beautiful.  I’m not alone though.  Bummer.  Camp host – a 20 year old kid from England – is excited about Alaska.  Asks me to tell him stories.  Beautiful sunset again.  Dinner is interrupted again.  Worth it.

On the road.  I keep thinking of William Least Heat Moon’s classic “Blue highways.”  I’ve read it 3 times, but not for several years.  He was better than I am at striking up conversation while driving through small towns.

Chetwynd, BC.  Self-proclaimed “chainsaw carving capital of the world.”  What a strange thing,  Sounds rather… I don’t know.  I stop, ready to make fun of it.  Then I see a display of the carvings.  These are not the simple bears with ‘welcome’ signs you see sold at every national park entrance town.

I’m blown away.  Amazed that a chainsaw can create such intricate detail.  Color me impressed,

Radio on for a few minutes.  Rare for me.  Radio stations are garbage.  Report that the night will bring torrential rains and high winds.  Time for hotel?  I’ve camped for 5 nights, but only 2 more before I hit Seattle and stay with friends.  Tent is wet.  I’m craving a big bed and a true shower.  Hotel it is.

Head to Kamloops.  Have heard its a cool town.  Treat myself to A Best Western for too much money.  Really want a hot tub.  Hotel turns into a disaster for multiple reasons.  After I leave the GM agrees to give me a 50% discount.  On the plus side I did have good Indian food.

No weather.  Of course.   It’s beautiful out.  Wasted my money.  Drive out of town.  Drive south and west, closer to Seattle.

Last night of camping,  A beautiful campground in a small town.  Surrounded by large trees in temperate rainforest.   During the night, the storm hits.  I wake to an inch of standing water on the ground.  Grateful for my quality tent.

Onward.  Seattle and friends await.  Two nights to rest before driving on.