Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Road Trip – report 1

with 3 comments

Hope – The Blue Moose

My favourite restaurant here was kitty corner to this one but is closed. Note to travellers – even if there is no sign saying “free wifi” it doesn’t hurt to ask. Especially when they do not have an open connection and you need a password to log in. And just becuase there is a line up does not means it is necessarily especially good. In this case it means that there are two bus loads of English lawn bowlers ahead of you. But the Blue Moose is OK even if the bowlers seem to have cleared much of the pre-prepared food.

Mount Baker

Mount Baker

The skies were overcast with a steady drizzle all the way to Abbotsford, when a thin stream of sun burst through and I got a shot of Mount Baker. My first stop was near Chilliwack where I learned about the drained lake which explains why the interurban route is not as direct as it could be. When it was built it had to go around – not straight across as the freeway does.

Sumas Lake

Sumas Lake

I am also beginning to see why people will pay for satellite radio

Written by Stephen Rees

September 9, 2008 at 1:40 pm

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  1. Sumas Lake was north-west of the Interurban and traces Vedder Mountain until Yarrow. Near Arnold (another former station and farming community), there is a large concrete building near the line. It was the transformer station and burned out quite a few years ago when I was a kid. The northeasterly section, which follows the mountain-side, transitions to the east-west section just north of Vye Road and a couple kilometres north of the border. The rail line is built up high, much higher than the road. This was to prevent submersion of the rail-line when high water occurred in spring. Chinese workers were employed to dig out the ditches on both sides and wheel the dirt up with wheel barrows atop the mound to form a “dyke”.

    A parallel line, on the north-west side of Sumas Lake was the Great Northern’s Vancouver, Victoria and Eastern. It was removed, but one can still see the road-cut along Sumas Mountain just west of Barrowtown pumping station. Someone about a year ago posted a map of the lines of 1913 of the Fraser Valley.

    In Hope it is worthwhile to check out the Othello Tunnels along the Coquihalla River before you start the Kettle Valley Trail. I presume you have along with you “McCulloch’s Wonder” by Barry Sandford.


    September 9, 2008 at 6:06 pm

  2. I am merely repeating what I heard at the Abbotsford Select Committee on Interregional Transportation last week – was I misinformed?

    I did the Othello Tunnels north of Hope last year at about the same time – but on that occasion turned north since I had not been through the Fraser Canyon or on the air tram. I looped back through Lillooet and Pemberton. There are pictures of that on my flickr photostream and i think I probably blogged about it here too as it was the first long trip in my then new Yaris

    Stephen Rees

    September 9, 2008 at 6:29 pm

  3. No, you are quite correct about the route and why it was not direct; the lake blocked its path. I was just trying to embellish a bit.

    I still find the power stations interesting to observe. There is an old BC Electric power station at Stave Lake and one on Renfrew St in Vancouver too. The one at Niagara Falls is still standing and quite elegant, but is not being kept up even though it is near a tourist trap.


    September 9, 2008 at 6:56 pm

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