The first part of the pictures are the "on the road shots" from
Kamloops, through the Cache Creek area and onto the Duffy Lake Road over the
mountains and then down into the Whistler area, which is also mountainous. You
will see a progression from very dry, sagebrush or scrub juniper to ponderosa
pine and douglas fir and into hemlock and cedar. The red cedar grows in the
very wettest of the Northwestern forests. It occurs to the east of us but by
the time you get to our area we are in ponderosa and douglas for the most part.
As we travel from our town thru Kamloops and beyond you will see the dryer area.
It looks surprisingly like Wyoming or Utah in varying degrees. It gets
progressively wetter as we go toward the western mountains.
The crop grown under the black screen cloth is "ginsing", a oriental favorite and quite a cash crop around here. It requires irrigation and complete hand weeding. Usually East Indian crews are willing to do this labor intensive work. Lots of ranchers and farmers are switching their fields to ginsing because the return is really high compared to hay which is all they can grow otherwise.
Moving further west we get into deeper canyons and approach the eastern
slopes of the mountains... the "dry mountain" side of the range. The
river seen is the Thompson that flows into the Fraser on its trek to the ocean.
The depth of the pictures is difficult to imagine. All you can do is try to
pick out a few trees and realize that they are probably 100 or 150 feet tall on
The tiny thin line you see in the above picture is actually our road about 5 minutes later.
The following picture shows a logging road zigzagging up the mountainside. The small patch of green in front is a hayfield and this vista is separated from us by that river seen in the previous pictures.
As we go further west, see the real mountains and the snow. On this trip, all the snow was above us. Nothing down on the road. We had sunshine and warm weather the whole way.
The following picture shows an avalanche chute. It is lighter green. The snow slips down this chute easier than on the rest of the mountain. As a result, it "mows down" all the trees in its path. Since bad avalanches happen relatively often, the trees dont grow back too quickly. Since the road is in close proximity, they often have to close the road during dangerous times. This is only one of many chutes.
Other hazards on the road include boulders or rocks falling that could crush a car in some cases. In the past year or two, a whole mountainside fell down, but that happened on the far side of the creek from the road. Must have almost frightened to death any drivers on the road at the time. Usually something like that (or big boulders down) is extremely rare but rocks come down daily.
MORE PICS - in the village of Whistler