Friday, 28 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 35

     It's been 5 weeks of incredible adventure and discovery. This is one big, beautiful country. Be proud you're Canadian, there's nothing better. We met a great cross section of people and spent valuable time with some cherished old friends. That all made it a great vacation but all great things must end. I'm sad it's over but very happy it happened. There's a psychological syndrome in there somewhere isn't there?
     I hope you have all enjoyed following along. It's been our pleasure to have you along for the ride.

Thursday, 27 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 34

     Sadly our trip is all but finished. Today was essentially the last day. Tomorrow we head back to Vancouver then fly home on Saturday. I suppose it's only fitting we should finish in Hope. The tour of the Rambo movie sites is a self-conducted tour of 13 sites that no longer exist. There has to be a  joke there.
     In the nearby Coquihalla Gorge the river cut a 300 foot deep channel through the rock. It is even more impressive than Hell's Gate in spots. The Othello Tunnels is a straight line of abandoned railway tunnels built through the solid granite. There are some spectacular viewing opportunities and the one remaining site from First Blood is the rock face between tunnels one and two. You remember the scene where the evil deputy falls to his death out of the helicopter. So sad.
     They were filming an unknown (to me) TV show in the canyon. That was interesting, especially the behemoth drone they use over the river. Modern technology is indeed impressive.
Othello Tunnels
our shadows in the tunnel
Othello Tunnel Trail
modern movie technology - this contraption is likely worth more than my house

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 33

     A cloudy, cool (5 degrees) day turned into a sunny beautiful day in southern BC. It was 20 degrees which is verging on hot in my book but the mountain scenery heading south was exquisite. We left Dave and Christy's paradise around 9AM. They have been incredible companions on this trip - that's what friends are all about. After about 5 hours of driving we have landed in Hope again. Reviving Hope! There were numerous stops along the way.
     I still cannot get over the fact there is a large desert in BC. Still say it's New Mexico. The TCH was not too busy so stopping didn't hurt. Everyone I passed passed me when I stopped so I had to pass them again. Felt like I was in the Gumball Rally.
     Hell's Gate was a different kind of sight. Not as much water as I had anticipated but not to be missed on any first trip to BC. We'll be doing some exploring tomorrow - stay tuned, only 2 days left.
south of Cache Creek - New Mexico again
Clear Range, South Interior Mountains
Who, me?
Hell's Gate
on the gondola

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 32

     Cloud and mist in the valleys were the words of the day. Karen and I don't get to see beautiful countryside like this often so we thoroughly enjoyed the 3 hour drive (one way) to Barkerville. It is a gold rush town from the mid nineteenth century and oozes charm and authenticity right down to the roaming re-enactors.
     One really should have 2 days to do this justice but we managed to see all the highlights in the time we were there. We also took a hike to nearby Richfield, on a distant extension of the site. The sign promised a 1 6/10 kilometre, easy, 30 minute walk. You know as well as I do that was not about to happen. It was uphill most of the way so "easy" didn't ring too true. We also managed a 3 km detour because the Canadian Sign Conundrum raised its head once again. In this case, no signs whatsoever. A fork in the road should indicate which path to take; before you climb a mountain to encounter a barrier at the top. When we arrived at the courthouse in Richfield the "judge" agreed with us that a sign would be nice and perhaps the barrier should be placed at the forks not at the top. Nevertheless it was a red ribbon day.
cloud and mist in the valley
it doesn't get much more authentic than this
the church is the centrepiece of Barkerville

Monday, 24 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 31

     A day to observe and enjoy nature in the splendour that is BC. It started at sunrise at Dave and Christy's home and was followed by a morning rainbow shortly thereafter. The River Valley Trail in Williams Lake was enjoyable (trying to ignore the invasion of snakes on the pathway) in part due to the glorious weather, sunny and about 14 degrees.
     A visit to Horsefly finished our day as we were fortunate to see the very last of the salmon run. These were definitely the Bruce Willises of the fish world - swimming slowly and refusing to die. A hike along the artificial spawning channels led us back down to the Horsefly River where the deer watched us cautiously as we passed by.
Rose Lake sunrise
morning rainbow - no pot of gold though
River Valley Hiking Trail - Williams Lake
last of the Horsefly salmon run
the deer are watching us just as intently as we are watching them - maybe more

Sunday, 23 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 30

     The day went from drizzling as we left Cache Creek to a beautiful sunny day by the time we arrived at Dave and Christy's at Rose Lake. I still had trouble adjusting to a desert in BC as we left Cache Creek and it stayed with us as we entered Clinton to the north.
     Clinton was a nice enough town but about 20 vintage cars parked on the main street made it irresistible. We talked to the owners for awhile - these cars have bigger engines and better equipment than a lot of cars on the road today. The care that goes into them shows in the immaculate finishes and attention to historic detail.
     As we got further north on Highway 97, near 70 Mile House, the sun came out in time to treat us to the beautiful fall colour in the hills. By the time we reach Dave and Christy's it was a legitimate beautiful day. After about 4 days of rain this was a welcome sight and feeling.
leaving the desert-like terrain of Cache Creek
vintage cars in Clinton
fall colour near 70 Mile House
Dave and Christy's - our home for the next 3 days

Saturday, 22 September 2018

Tuk Trip - Day 29

     I may have left the impression that I did not enjoy Hope. Not so. It is a pretty mountain town. My disappointment is the TCH being part of it. We were here in the early 80s before the highway arrived. At that time Hope was charming. Today it is busy and overrun with people. The way around that is to get up ahead of everyone as we did this morning around 7AM. That's the secret...but I'm still ticked that they demolished the Rambo bridge.
     I have never seen a speed limit like this in Canada (see 2nd photo below). It really is a shame it is through a scenic mountain pass just north of Hope. What are you guys thinking?
     Doh! a deer! Actually about half a dozen of them. We drove by in the pouring rain, turned around, went back and sat watching them. As more cars went by they all got spooked and effortlessly jumped over the fence and headed into the woods. All but the fawn who knew where to go and crawled under the fence. Even the deer have an escape plan.
     It rained all day but finally stopped when we arrived in Cache Creek. It sits in the middle of a sage brush landscape unlike anything I ever anticipated seeing in BC. As a matter of fact I felt like I was in Texas or New Mexico. Beautiful!
the Fraser River in Hope, BC
certainly don't need this in such a picturesque (not so much today) spot
took getting to BC to see any wildlife
sure not what I expected to see in BC