Cariboo Tour 2009
Some say that a little adversity will often bond a group of people
We gathered on Friday evening August 28th for an introductory and safety
Eighteen rowers (19 including our faithful safety boat operator, Billy!)
On Saturday morning we gathered at 6:30 a.m. on the
We rowed the full length of this large wilderness lake—forested right to
On Sunday our rowing adventure began early again, but this day we had an adventurous “commute” through the backroads from Bridge Lake to Roserim Beach on Canim Lake. Our unique caravan, including the truck pulling the boat trailer, the Tracker carrying our safety boat, and four more vehicles, snaked along the dirt/gravel road past a number of scenic lakes in the early hours of Sunday. Before most people were awake in the campsite on Drewry Lake, midway to Canim Lake, we stopped for a break alongside the road. No doubt they were awake by the time we left! Roserim Beach was a site to behold that morning, silver blue flat water as far as they eye could see. We rigged and launched as the lake lapped gently on the pebbly shoreline. I have never seen Canim Lake so calm and so gentle as that day. Rowing for close to 35 km that day was a treat, with the breeze gently disturbing the surface of the lake once in a while, only causing wrinkles in the water’s surface. Our morning break was on a vast expanse of sandy beach where Canim Creek flows into the lake. It was an easy spot to bring the touring boats in, and dig out our snacks from our dry sacks in the hulls. Life could not be better on any given Sunday morning in August...!
Part of the row on Canim Lake felt like being on another planet. There was a haze of smoke in the air from forest fires burning in the area, which turned the water and air to a silvery blue. The hills on Canim’s shore faded from forest green to misty blue/green, and the mountains from Wells Grey Park looked more like the gradations of silver blue you find on the west coast. And the water--like silver frosting on a very large cake--stayed so smooth and surreal, completely unlike the Canim Lake I have known for 30 years! We were gifted with another amazing day. It was truly sublime to be there with great people, great water, and doing great things. Yes, bums got a little sore in the seats over those many kilometres, but we discovered the solution to that problem.....with a little ingenuity! Touring boats are the best!
Each day our return to home base at Bridge Lake always allowed time for a cold drink, a much-needed shower, or a nap, before gathering together again in the evening. Some of us shared dinner time together at our “canopy site” lit by Christmas lights suspended from above(created because of the total campfire ban in place in the Cariboo)! More participants would continue to gather after dinner and we talked and visited, and laughed about the day. These times are the best parts of a rowing tour: time for us to expand our friendships, and enrich each of our experiences. What an amazing group of people!
Monday morning we had a more leisurely start to the day and rowed about 16 km on Bridge Lake—rowing to the Provincial Park and back to the resort—with time to de-rig and clean the boats before loading them on the trailer to return home. A few goodbyes took place beside the loaded trailer, just before the first two people who had the longest drive ahead pulled out of the driveway at the resort. The rest of us completed our packing, and shared our lunch together at our canopy site once again. There were more farewells after lunch, and many more words of gratitude for our remarkable rowing tour experience.
Some of our pictures capture the essence of the Cariboo Rowing Tour more than any words possibly could. Have a look at the faces—this is the kind of journey we had, while rowing nearly 80 km in 3 days!
--Brenda Jenkins, South Cariboo Rowing Club