June 2, 2009
The morning atr Canyon Alpine RV Park was cool, fragrant with the smell of evergreen and full of bird songs. I could hear kinglets and vireos, although none of them were kind enough to show themselves. The robin and a junco were the only birds that came out in the open.
We headed up Trans Canada 1 along the Frazier River past the tiny hamlet of Lytton, which we kind of intended to check out, but it was a “here it is…there it goes” situation. The next “major” town was Spence Bridge, again a very small community which had two claims to fame – a log cabin pub and the confluence of the Thompson and Nicola Rivers. Rafting is the big industry there. We stopped for lunch at a pull-out and saw a trio of bighorn sheep bounce across the road and down to a plateau above the river. Gypsy fortunately didn’t see them, or it would have been cause for 20 minutes of ‘boofing’ – not quite a bark but definitely a soliloquy about the situation.
The Thompson River canyon is much drier than the Frazier, with sparser trees and sage, with lots of volcanic rocks interspersed with ancient river beds – prime rock-slide territory. The Milepost says that this area is called the Arizona of Canada and it just doesn’t seem like the image of British Columbia that I had in my mind. We stopped for the night in Clinton, another small town which has as its major attraction an RV park that is only charging $15 a night. What a deal! Or did we get what we paid for. No wi-fi that was promised and the proprietor had ATTITUDE. Oh, well, it was only one night.
We made a stop today at 100 Mile House. It actually qualifies as a town, with not one, but two supermarkets! There is a bird sanctuary right in the middle of town, behind the Visitor Information center, where we saw yellow-headed blackbirds, purple martins, tri-colored blackbirds, ruddy ducks, crested mergansers, and golden-eye ducks. The nice lady who ran the center had two cute westies who came out to romp with Gypsy.
Later we stopped for lunch at a pull-out next to the San Juan River, a very nice place to take in the scenery. According to Milepost, the famous Canadian painter, A.Y. Jackson, painted this valley. Now I have to look him up and see how his painting compares to my photos.
We made this a long day. We probably should have stopped at Williams Lake, but pushed on to Quesnel to stay in the 10 Mile Provencial Park. It's a nice park with plenty of camp spots. The only main drawback is that the mosquitoes hatched day before yesterday and they are the size of small airplanes and hungry! No walk tonight!
Some funny things we've seen along the way:
In several towns, signs announcing Car and Dog Wash. I guess Canadians like to keep their dogs and cars clean.
A highway sign pointing down a road, giving directions to Likely Horsefly Lakes. Why, I wondered would anyone go to a lake that is so likely to have horseflies that they named it Likely Horsefly. Turns out it was Horsefly Lake and a nearby town named Likely. Still wouldn't go there. They should have called this park Likely Mosquito Park!