Mileage 8009.8, on the road at 8:38 a.m. This was an exceptionally long day spent in the car; for some silly reason we decided to drive all day with the goal of reaching my Uncle Bob’s house before nightfall. I’m not sure why we didn’t break it up into a two day drive, considering there were many different places we could have set up camp.
The drive may have been long, but the scenery was spectacular as expected. There were times when driving on the highway, beside the Fraser River, where I had to close my eyes. The twists and turns at highway speeds, and when you looked out the window it was a straight drop down to the Fraser River.
The next few days were spent with my Uncle Bob, his wife Aunt Willie, and their daughter. This was a welcomed rest from the long drive, I was also able to do some laundry
On the morning of day 18, we awoke to a message from our son to call him. Now our son is never one to call unless it is important, so mom’s worrying was on high. There was no cell service at the park, but I had paid for a wifi connection the day before, so we had to use Facebook Messenger to try and contact our son. This was not an optimal connection, but enough to find out what had happened.
Before leaving for our trip, we had put together a number of bags of clothing that the son was supposed to drop off at the donation centre, in the meantime they were left on our front porch. Sometime during the night, a couple of teenage/young adult males had went through all the clothing, laying some of it on the railing. They tore down our Canadian Flag pole with the flag still attached, and took it with them when they left. One of them, dropped a cigarette on some newspaper flyers which had been thrown on our steps. This cigarette butt thus set the paper on fire, which set the steps on fire. How the entire house did not go up in flames, can only be attributed to the fact it had rained a lot and everything was pretty wet, either way, four out of our five porch steps were destroyed.
Now we have neighbours from hell, who are also not that smart. She and her husband had smelled smoke during the night, but decided we were having an illegal bonfire in our yard, and did not call the fire department, (weeks later when my husband and I returned home, I had quite the argument with her, as to why on earth she didn’t check where the smoke was coming from, especially since in the over fifteen years we have lived beside each other, we have never once had a bonfire in our yard! I was beyond upset, because the outcome could have been so much worse, if our house had gone up in flames with our son and his friend sleeping in the back upstairs bedrooms).
When our son woke up at 6:40 am to go to work, he immediately noticed the burnt porch steps. He phoned the police, who in turn called the fire department to assist in determining whether or not this was a case of arson. Sadly the culprits were never found.
It was around 9:30 am when we finally started travelling again. One thing we noticed in the interior of British Columbia was the lack of signage, so after driving for 2.5 kilometres, we were unsure if we were travelling south, so we turned around and went back a few kilometres, then turned around again, going back another few kilometres before we finally saw a sign – we had been driving the right way the first time. Oh what a morning we were having!
It was late in the day when we made it to Beaumont Provincial Park site #24. There was another Bear warning for the area, but he/she was more interested in the abundant supply of Saskatoon berries. Instead we could be concerned about the Western Thatch Ant, if you disturbed their nest which can be five to six feet wide or more, and as tall or taller than I (5’6”). The ant will bite you, if it feels threatened. Thankfully we somehow picked the only campsite that did not have a Western Thatch Ant nest, but did have plenty of Saskatoon berries! I filled as many Tupperware containers as I could of the berry which I found to be delicious.
This morning was spent searching for Matt’s car keys, not in the tent, not in the car, he then retraced his steps on the walk we had taken the night before, with the sincere hope they did not fall into the “shitter” as Matt said (otherwise known as the outhouse). Eventually he had to do his morning ‘business’, and that is when he found his keys – ‘they were stuck in his underwear of all places!’ Happy as clams, we jumped for joy, just in time to see a float plane land in the water!
We left Boya Lake Provincial Park at 9:15, mileage 7008.3. On our drive we saw two red foxes, and two more black bears, one munching on berries, another crossing the road appearing to smile at us.
As we passed Dease Lake, the road turned to gravel, we really were in the interior.
We arrived at our destination around 4:30pm, it had been a long drive that day. We were lucky to be able to find a campsite that day, we camped at site #9, on the third level with a beautiful view of the lake, and snow capped mountains. Meziadin Lake Provincial Park is a well maintained campground, there were even hanging baskets of flowers outside of the outhouses. Raspberry bushes everywhere, which of course, meant there was a bear wondering the area, and bear bangers going off every so often. We met a group of bicycle riders, they averaged about 40 miles per day (they were from the United States, thus miles not kilometres).
When we walked around the park, we met people from Germany, and two gentlemen from England who had brought their own vehicle to Canada! I can’t even imagine the cost??