Route 3 Fall 09

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P e o p l e A rts H o m e s F o o d c u lt u r e r e c r e at i o n H i s to ry Fall 2009

Life in the West Kootenay/Boundary Region

Rock Solid Climbing in the Kootenay/ Boundary region rocks!

Glass House

The artists at Ourglass Studio and Gallery in Nelson work collectively and connectedly

Brew Meisters

There isn’t much that can top coffee made from beans freshly roasted in our own backyard

Beautiful Borscht

Fall is the perfect time to use fresh local produce to make the hearty Doukhobor soup Fall 2009 Route 3

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editor’s message


s I write this, it’s still summer, though the nights are starting to cool off. I can't complain — we finish up this magazine only a few weeks before it hits the streets, so it’s relatively timely. Many publications are worked on in completely opposite seasons, and Christmas stories get written in July (which would completely ruin summer, and Christmas, for me). But this is the fall issue of Route 3, and thoughts turn to getting back into routines and schedules, buying school supplies and a few new items of clothing for my growing daughters, and dealing with the abundance of tomatoes ripening in our little garden. I'm planning to use some of those tomatoes to make a batch of Doukhobor borscht, from Kelly Malakoff’s recipe in our Beautiful Borscht story. What better use for the fresh harvest of fall? I need to remember to plant dill next year, however, as the dried stuff just won’t cut it. While we're on the subject of great-tasting local bounty, be sure to read our story on coffee roasters in the region. Oso Negro, Rock Creek Trading Post and Trail Coffee & Tea Co. all freshly roast their beans, giving us the opportunity to have the best coffee we can get. How lucky is that? It never ceases to amaze me what wonderful fare we have available to us here in the “boonies.” We also have an abundance of talent in the arts — which I'm certain is news to no one. Ourglass Studio and Gallery in Nelson is a prime example of creative and entrepreneurial skill. The three partners, well on their way to becoming lampwork masters, are producing beautiful

work well worth checking out. On the outdoor adventure end of things, we have two stories this issue — the cover feature on rock climbing in the area, and a story on the beautiful Owl Mountain trailriding ranch near Christina Lake. Rock climbing isn't for everyone, and it’s not the first recreational activity that crosses your mind when you think about the Kootenay/ Boundary region, but for the vertically inclined, this is a prime wilderness climbing area, with plenty of new faces to scale. For those who prefer a less strenuous, but equally scenic activity, trail riding is an excellent option. I've ridden horses in many places around the province, and have honestly never been to a trail-riding ranch in such a beautiful location, or with such well-behaved horses as Owl Mountain. Take your entire family — you won't regret it. Our home story this issue features the homes of three Warfield neighbours who all grew up in the houses they now own as adults. It’s obvious that they treasure these fine, old houses, nestled in a private location along Trail Creek. And, as always, we end this issue with another excellent local history article by Greg Nesteroff, this one on Cody Caves; a Q&A with Pat Field of Castlegar’s Sculpturewalk; and lastly, a striking photo by Nelson photographer Madeleine Guenette. I hope you enjoy it! — Shelley Ackerman

Tidbits - a taste of what’s happening in the West Kootenay/Boundary region Landscape/ Humanscape Aug. 29 – Nov. 7 Grand Forks Art Gallery Karla Pearce has been painting Kootenay landscapes exclusively for the last fifteen years. Her paintings balance on a line between representation and expressionism. For info call 250-442-2211

Hills Garlic Fest Sun., Sept .13, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Centennial Park in New Denver With the theme Homemade – Homegrown – Organic, this year's event will feature 150 vendors selling: • organic garlic from around the world, garlic wreaths, products and snacks • fresh organic produce • plants and plant products • local crafts of art, jewellery, wood, flutes, furniture, pottery, textiles, rocks • soaps, lotions, and herbal remedies • local hot sauce and great food Also featuring live entertainment and children's entertainment all day

Rock Creek & Boundary Fair Sept. 19 & 20 Rock Creek The biggest little country fair around! This year the fair features events such as a heavy horse show, cattle penning, pro-barrel racing, lawnmower races, tractor pull, 4-H classes, horse events, livestock competitions, free entertainment on stage, and vendors.

Old Fire Hall Jazz Fest Wed. – Fri., Sept. 23–27 Rossland Jazz lovers take note – five days of world-class jazz in an intimate setting with only 100 people! Incredible talent including the Brad Turner Quartet, legendary New York city trumpeter Jim Rotondi and his quintet of heavy-hitters, Mark DeJong and his quintet featuring the star NYC drummer Jerome Jennings, a full evening of B3 with Sinistrio and the Clinton Administration and the incredible Gordon Grdina Trio. www.

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contents Publisher Sandra Barron Account Manager Chris Hammett Editor & Art Director Shelley Ackerman Ad design Stephanie Jutras Route 3 is published quarterly by Glacier Media Group

Chris Hammett

Telephone: 250-442-2191 or 1-877-443-2191 Fax: 250-442-3336 email: Courier and Mail: Box 700, 7255 Riverside Drive, Grand Forks, BC V0H 1H0

Just three of the many gentle horses that enjoy life at Owl Mountain Ranch at Christina Lake. See story on page 15.


Glass House The artists at Ourglass Studio and Gallery in Nelson work collectively and connectedly, page 7 Local business

Brew Meisters There isn’t much that can top coffee made from beans freshly roasted in our own backyard, page 10 recreation

Horse Sense

Owl Mountain Ranch offers stunning trail rides on calm, handsome horses, page 15 Outdoor Adventure

Rock Solid

Climbing may not be the most popular outdoor activity in the region, but for those who’ve discovered it, it rocks, page 18


Deep Roots Three Warfield neighbours treasure the homes they grew up in, page 22 Local food

Beautiful Borscht

Fall is the perfect time to use fresh local produce to make the hearty Doukhobor soup, page 25 History

Mysteries of the Cody Caves

The caves between Nelson and Kaslo have long fascinated visitors and writers, page 28 Q&A with:

Pat Field

Interview with the organizer of Castlegar’s Sculpturewalk, page 30 Special Places

Photo by Madeleine Guenette, page 31 Page 4

Route 3 Fall 2009

Route 3 is distributed through the following newspapers, and on racks throughout the West Kootenay and Boundary regions.

Printed in Canada on recyclable paper. Copyright 2009 by Glacier Media Group. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any article, photograph, or artwork without written permission of the publisher is strictly forbidden. The publisher can assume no responsibility for unsolicited material.

PLEASE PUT FSC LOGO HERE Cover photo: Climber Andrea Kortello practices some moves on the Squatters Bluff located near the edge of Nelson, by David R. Gluns

contributors Tyler Austin Bradley lives in an old corner store in Rossland. He divides his time between reading, writing, eating, sleeping, producing films and managing the waste stream of residents in the greater Trail area. He is originally from Vancouver.

Conference Call

LARRY DOELL is a Rossland resident who has seen his photography business flourish since establishing it in the Trail area in 1991. Previous to that, he travelled extensively and was represented by a New York stock photo agency. As a community photographer, Larry melds creativity with technical expertise to produce outstanding images. Nelson-based photographer David R. Gluns has captured moments in many special places in the world, creating images for numerous magazines, books and commercial clients, but “nothing beats the Kootenays as a place to live and photograph. I love the challenge of getting a great image whether it be flying in my plane, making food look great for the latest cookbook, or just hiking in the backcountry!” He can be reached at Shella Gardezi moved to B.C. from Ontario in 2008, to immerse herself in Kootenay/Boundary life as the editor of the Grand Forks Gazette. "Meeting people and having the opportunity to tell their stories is one of the highlights of being a journalist," she says. After numerous years as a camera store and photo lab owner/operator at the coast, and 30 years’ experience as a professional photographer, Chris Hammett decided it was time for a change, so she moved to Grand Forks to enjoy the slower paced, rural lifestyle. It was a chance to unwind and be inspired in a region of spectacular scenery. Exploring the backcountry in her Jeep, she still shoots professionally while being true to her own creative vision.

Boundary Economic Development Committee

Kyra Hoggan is a Calgary transplant who came to the Kootenays two years ago seeking a quieter, more relaxed lifestyle — only to end up busier than ever with the region’s bounty of exciting activities and fascinating people. Owner of Ironquill Freelance, Hoggan spends her off time with her 10-year-old son, as together they explore the wonders of their new mountain home.'

Come for the Adventure. Stay for the Lifestyle.

and Community Futures Boundary Invite You to

Based in Grand Forks, Mona Mattei is a reporter for the Grand Forks Gazette and a freelance journalist. Recently nominated for a prestigious Jack Webster Award for her feature on uranium mining in The Weekender, Mona loves the challenge of journalism. You can catch her alter-ego Sophia on stage with Les Folles Jambettes cancan dance troupe or at the studio teaching dance and yoga. Local history buff Greg Nesteroff has only visited the Cody Caves once but would like to go again. He lacks a four-wheel drive. Amy Robillard is freelance writer based out of Nelson. She is a regular contributor to local papers and publications as well as a business writer for Rising Women magazine, based out of Calgary. When not playing in the mountains or writing, Amy can be found in her kitchen mixing up a batch of gelato for the company she founded and manages, Little Miss Gelato, a local ice cream manufacturing company based in Nelson. Graham Tracey is a constant musician, a frequent writer, and an occasional cook. He and his wife are aspiring Canadians, but their son is the real deal. After a decade of working in New York City as a composer and producer, Graham moved to Rossland to ski and breathe freely. Fran Wallis works from her home office in Silverton. She has published articles and photographs in Canadian Gardening, Cottage Magazine, Small Farms Canada, and North West Travel. When not researching stories, Fran teaches ballroom dance or can be found paddling the pristine Slocan Lake or hiking the Goat Range.

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Route 3 Fall 2009

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artists story by

Amy Robillard Chris Hammett

photos by

Glass House The artists at Ourglass Studio and Gallery in Nelson work collectively and connectedly


espite the medium’s tendency towards transparency, glass art is nothing short of an opaque lesson in fragility and diligence in a process. “The trick is to use fluid angles to create strength in the piece”, co-owner Dan Farden of “Ourglass Studio and Gallery” explains, “Some of the most beautiful pieces rely on the most delicate of connections.” Connections seem to abound in this small studio and gallery located at 568 Ward Street in Nelson’s downtown. There is the obvious connection between co-owners, Dan Farden, Galadriel Lawrence and Richie McBeath who make, display and sell their wares in their colourful gallery. There is the connection the studio has developed with the area’s art community and specifically with the 20 or so glass artists that call the Kootenays home, and most importantly, there is the physical connection of glass on glass. “The idea of knowledge sharing within the lampworker’s (glass artists) community is important to us and I think that has evolved since we started”, Dan says explaining the studio’s open

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“Lampwork is an ancient art form that used lamp oil and bellows to melt and manipulate glass. Now we use a torch that is fuelled by oxygen and propane to achieve the same results.” Opening page: Partners Richie McBeath, Dan Farden and Galadriel Lawrence with some of their wonderful creations in their Ourglass Studio and Gallery. Top: Fascinated children look on as Dan Farden explains the art of bead making. Above: Richie McBeath stands proudly by some of his works of art. Right page: Hand-made glass belt buckles are one of Galadriel Lawrence's unique specialties.

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philosophy with the arts community. Originally owned by six partners, Ourglass Studio and Gallery opened their doors on Valentine’s Day 2003, setting up shop as a studio that focused on jewellery and beads. Ownership of the studio was taken over by three of the original glass artists in 2007 and today is a gallery and working studio that showcases elaborate fused glass and torch pieces. Glass is a fascinating substance that defies scientific classification. It is technically not a solid, not a gas, and not quite a liquid either. At room temperature it acts like a solid. But it’s the heat of the lampworker’s torch that brings solid glass to life and returns it to a liquid and workable form – thus allowing the magic of the art form to occur. The process of heating, shaping and cooling glass is technical, complicated and very time consuming. The glass used in glass art is Pyrex borosilicate — a type of glass that has a high

thermal resistance and is incredibly durable. “Fused glass is an assembly of cut glass that is stacked and heated in the kiln. This type of glass is 96 C.O.E. (co-efficiency of expansion), meaning that the rate of glass heating to cooling is faster, making it the softer of the two types of glass used in the studio,” co-owner Galadriel Lawrence says, explaining the production process of her incredibly cool belt buckles. Like many Nelsonites, Galadriel had visited Nelson a number of times before making the move from Vancouver. “I wanted to move to Nelson and when glass art was introduced to me, I dabbled in it.” That was seven years ago and Galadriel has embraced the medium. After moving to Nelson with her daughter in 2002, she immediately became involved with the inception of Ourglass — her style is modern and whimsical, unique and often wearable. “I like creating adornments for the body”, she explains referring to her belt buckles and stunning flower rings. Working with goldsmith/silversmith R.T. Turner, her glass flower rings are truly stunning and their voluminous shapes are impressive and undoubtedly elicit compliments. It is pieces like those that elevate the studio’s stature from glass shop to gallery. Though their delicate style looks fragile, the strong glass is heated to 2350 degrees Fahrenheit, ensuring durability. “It is important to turn the glass slowly and evenly when heating it with the torch,” Dan explains, blowing air through a glass straw into translucent green glass that in moments take the shape of a small vase. Dan’s introduction to the art of glass was very “organic.” “I was hitchhiking on Vancouver

Island and was picked up by two glass artists. We ended up on Cowichan Lake where I witnessed lampworking for the first time — I was hooked”, the 33-year-old explains. Originally from Saskatoon, Dan came west and eventually made his glass dream a reality. “Since Richie, Galadriel and I took ownership three years ago, we have honed our skills — we make decisions collectively, have more time in the studio and are incrementally mastering glass”, though he adds that they all have about 25,000 hours to invest before they can be defined as lampwork masters. “Lampwork,” Dan explains, “Is an ancient art form that used lamp oil and bellows to melt and manipulate glass. Now we use a torch that is fuelled by oxygen and propane to achieve the same results.” The earliest man-made glass objects — glass beads — are thought to date back to about 3500 BC, originating in and around Mesopotamia (modern-day Iraq, Syria, and Turkey). Perhaps it is lampwork’s long history or maybe it is the artists’ patience with a medium that could easily be disastrous, that makes glass art incredibly beautiful and appealing. With some pieces taking upwards of 20 hours to complete, a fall is quite literally shattering. “You just have to let it go and start again”, says co-owner and

glass artist Richie McBeath, “It is Sports Injury Rehab part of the process.” Massage Therapy These words of wisdom from Acupuncture an artist, who has created some of IMS the most expensive but undeniPilates Instruction ably beautiful pieces in the gallery, Yoga Classes must be taken to heart. Having apManual Therapy prenticed under glass-artist guru Steve Sizelove — Richie is perfecting the art of glass sculpting. 250.362.7333 “I love the female form and it comes out in my work,” Ritchie says of his delicate pieces that involve the thinnest of connections, resulting in beautifully elegant work. infinity_r3_ad_081709.indd 1 The studio — with the powerful element of fire that simultaneously creates both durability and fragility — takes on an almost alchemical ambience. Piles of glass rods and tubes, metal tongs, prods and pokers line the work area melding the studio into a workplace of art — art that connects the historical with the contemporary, art with community, and most importantly, beautifully coloured glass layered upon beautifully coloured glass. Ourglass offers one-on-one lampwork classes and monthly art openings to local and other artists. As well, Ourglass’ subterrain studio offers goldsmith and silversmith services by R.T. Turner, owner of Fire&Rock. For more information, visit the studio and gallery at 568 Ward Street in Nelson or go to

1961 Georgia St Rossland, BC

8/17/09 11:46:37 AM

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local business

Mona Mattei Photos by Chris Hammett story by

Brew Meisters There isn’t much that can top coffee made from beans freshly roasted in our own backyard


nhale to experience a blending of scents from nuts to spice to perhaps even a hit of wine as you open a new bag of coffee. Run your fingers through the beans collecting silky oils and releasing another burst of scent. There are truly few words that fully describe the pleasure of smelling freshly roasted coffee beans, but most people who truly love their coffee are smiling as they read this because they’ve been there. If you are a coffee fanatic, you also know that coffees roasted close to market give the best possible coffee experience. Jon Meyer of Oso Negro Coffee in Nelson, Jeff and Karen Bruce of Trail Coffee & Tea Co. in Trail, and Kent and Denise Blaker of Rock Creek Trading Post in Rock Creek are all dedicated to the tradition of coffee roasting. Oso Negro, which means black bear in Spanish, began in 1993 in Nelson, when old friends Jon Meyer and Jim May — who’d worked together in the forest sector — decided to create a small cottage industry business while they were looking for other work. They set up shop in a 200 sq. ft. room around the corner at the far end of Baker Street. They sold beans in handmade cloth bags, and invited passersby to try their freshly roasted coffee. Starting with only 50 pounds a month, Oso is now processing seven to eight tons a month.

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Opposite page: The staff of Oso Negro are like a close-knit family and it's not hard to tell that they really enjoy what they do. Centre: owner Jon Meyer and caffeine canine, Pitou. Rear, from left to right: Ned Woods (head coffee roaster), Mike Tremblay, Ingeburg Stewart and Keshia Clancy. Above, left: Kent and Denise Blaker on their covered outdoor patio at The Trading Post in Rock Creek. Right: At the Trail Coffee and Tea Co., owner Jeff Bruce mans the expresso maker

“After the first year or so I had the nerve to call myself a roaster. It was at least a year, year and a half before I had enough understanding of the different characteristics, different qualities of the different countries,” explained Meyer. “We use beans from 17 different countries and regions.” When the tiny room by the park grew too cramped, they moved the café to a location on Victoria Street, and then into their new home on Ward Street where you find them today. By 2000, the roastery moved to uphill Nelson’s Kootenay Warehousing building, with an office, green bean and equipment storage, a view, and level access — no more hauling 150-pound bags of beans up a narrow stair. The new café was designed by Jon even before the building came up for sale from Mrs. Santor — Nelson’s oldest living resident. 100 truckloads of materials were excavated from the property as the café came into being. The intricate metal work throughout the interior and exterior was created by different artists, and the garden was developed by David Fisher. Rock Creek Trading Post has been open for four years. They are a micro-roaster using only organic, fair trade coffee beans. Their digitized fluid band roaster is able to process only two pounds at a time. Operating from a heritage building that has been everything from a hotel to a family home to a laundry, the Trading Post now houses the roastery, café, and gift shop for travellers and locals at the junction of Highway 3 and Highway 33. “We realized quite quickly that the smart way to go

about it was to roast our own beans on site,” said Kent Blaker. “Now you have the freshest coffee possible.” The Blakers keep it simple, offering two types of roasts. With an outdoor roaster, cold weather can be a challenge for the process, and in full winter the Blakers close up shop. Trail Coffee & Tea Co. has also been through transformation — from starting a roastery in the Old Firehall in Rossland in 2005, to moving to their own larger location in downtown Trail earlier this year. Owners Jeff and Karen Bruce added a full-service café to the venture when they moved the roaster. Jeff and his wife do the roasting after hours in order to ensure they are able to be focused on the roasts. While Jeff started out as a teacher, his journey landed him as a roaster apprentice in Kelowna at Pioneer Coffee. When the opportunity to purchase a roaster from Pioneer came up, Jeff decided to return to Trail, where he grew up, to raise his family. “To roast in here is really to roast in the lap of luxury,” smiled Jeff. “You’ve got the a/c going, you’ve got the stereo going, you’ve got a beautiful tiled Italian floor with the 35-year-old Italian roaster — it really is a great experience! It’s fun!” The roasting process transforms the chemical and physical properties of green coffee beans into roasted coffee products. Roasting is what produces the characteristic flavour of coffee by causing the green coffee beans to expand and to change in colour, taste, smell, and density.

“After the first year or so I had the nerve to call myself a roaster. It was at least a year, year and a half before I had enough understanding of the different characteristics, different qualities of the different countries.”

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Left: Raw coffee beans are a light green in colour before roasting. Right: Roasted coffee beans are stirred to cool before packaging. Opposite page: Keshia Clancy packages fresh roasted coffee beans for market.

Roasting takes a surprisingly short time — between 15 and 20 minutes. Once filled, the roaster rotates the coffee as it bakes ensuring an even roast. Visual checks are made along with timing the batch to ensure the correct flavour and colour is achieved. The coffee is then released from the roaster into the circular cooling tray where air is pushed through and around the beans while they are kept in constant motion. Once cool, the beans are stored away from direct light and air until they are packaged. For Oso Negro, the blends they have perfected are done just before packaging. “We have about 18 different blends. Blends take a long time to develop and understand and decide if there is a big enough appeal for customers,” Jon described. “Every day we have a different blend behind the counter. That way customers can make up their own mind if they like Ethiopia or the Honduras light roast or Cuban and a dark roast.” Oso’s 65-year-old roaster is completely manual, and roasts 22 kilograms at a time. Jon chose a manual machine because he believes that the roaster needs to have a relationship with the beans to produce the best coffee. His passion for Page 12

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coffee roasting developed at the same time as his passion for coffee. “As I taught myself how to roast coffee I realized how much fun it could be and how intriguing it is. It is not as complex as cheese or wine, but there’s lots of nuances to learn about the different varieties and characteristics that each country has to offer and understand how dark or light each country wants to be roasted,” said Meyer. “And then to find the blends that people will enjoy. There’s a huge variety of tastes out there.” Bruce agrees that roasting is an art. “What you put into it you’re going to get out of it. If you’re trying to cut corners in roasting coffee you’re going to have problems. It needs to be respected. It needs to be done properly.” Bruce’s beans are primarily South American, but he says that people are going more for the African beans right now. He has a few pre-made blends, but he says most of his customers prefer to blend their own and works to help customers experience different flavours. Oso Negro, the Trading Post and Trail Coffee all use the services of coffee brokers to purchase their coffee beans, most of which are fair-trade coffees that are

organic. But the Trading Post goes one step farther — they have visited some of the coffee plantations where their beans come from. “We usually close in the winter and we go south. We’ve toured all the coffee plantations where our coffee is from, so we’re quite involved with the fair-trade process,” said Denise Blaker. “We’ve been to Guatemala and this year we’re off to Peru because we use both coffees.” As well as doing the fair-trade coffee, they are involved with assisting a women’s collective in marketing the ramon nut that is harvested from the forests. The money is used to assist in feeding the children in the collective’s communities. But for all of these roasters, the experience is not just about the bean, it is about people. The people who work with them (their coffee “family”), their community, and, of course, it is also about the people who grow the coffee. “There’s no reason for (the companies) to be predatory,” said Bruce. “He’s providing for his family, I’m providing for my family, the fellow in Rock Creek is providing for his family. That’s all we’re trying to

do is make a living for us and our families.” Bruce says that the success of their business is based on knowing their community and being a part of it. “My family’s been in Trail since 1927. I know all my customers and they know us. That’s why our business works.” Sustainability is featured in all of the local roasters — with the Trading Post’s support of the women’s group, to fair trade purchasing, and even in the baseline of Oso Negro’s business practice. “Our objective is not to grow for ever, our objective is to enjoy our lives,” said Meyer. “Life is short. I think all of us come to that conclusion at one point or another and we have to decide — is our life going to be focused on some sort of executive position (and there’s nothing wrong with that) or is it going to be a life that’s balanced — going on bicycle trips, going paddling outings, whatever’s going to enrich your life. There are 28 exceptional people I work with and if I can help them get on with their lives, if they can help Oso Negro, if it can be a mutual experience — that’s something I’m as proud of as the coffee itself. That’s what makes the whole dynamic here exciting.” This business attitude is what enables Oso Negro to serve 1,000 cups of coffee a day in a town of 10,000. “There’s people that buy WonderBread, and there’s people who go to their local bakery. There’s a reason why each has their own clientele. (Some) want the passion and appeal that comes with living. It’s all about living. It’s about waking up and really being alive.”

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recreation Shella Gardezi photos by Chris Hammett story by

Horse sense Owl Mountain Ranch offers stunning trail rides on calm, handsome horses


s soon as Rick and Marie Seymour saw the property tucked right against the stunning Owl Mountain, they knew that’s where they wanted their new home and business. “We looked all over B.C. for a landscape like this,” said Rick. Once you pull off the highway and through the gates of Owl Mountain Ranch you’ll know exactly how they must have felt when they made the decision over 10 years ago to move their family here from Langley, B.C., and begin a trail-riding business.

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Opening page: Riding is a way of life for the Seymour family — Rick, Marie, Chelsea and Ryan. Even Zac the dog enjoys the trails with them. Top: Ranch hand Travis Voght is one of the guides on the ride along Smugglers Trail. Center left: Rick Seymour gives first time rider, writer Shella Gardezi time to get aquainted with Cookie before beginning her trail ride. Center right: Rick relaxes at the bar, surrounded by antique saddles, tack and cowboy artifacts. Bottom: Six-year-old Liam Crozier from Newmarket, Ontario spends some quiet time with Cowboy, the miniature horse and Anderson, the miniature donkey at the petting zoo.

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Located near the Cascade border station about six kilometres from Christina Lake, there’s a lot to explore on horseback. The business offers trail rides that are suitable for any level and range from one hour to a half day. A one-hour beginner tour will take you right up against the rock face of Owl Mountain. In the summer, the family is joined by Bonnie James and Travis Voght of Merritt, who are skilled riders, instructors and trail guides. I arrive not knowing what to expect. I’ve never ridden a horse before and the one picked out for me, Cookie, is big… really big. However, in trail riding, that’s a good thing, apparently. Bonnie, who offers to lead me, says Cookie is the preferred horse for kids and beginners. It’s the smaller horses that tend to be a little skittish, she said. “You could set a bomb off under Cookie and she wouldn’t bolt,” she assures me. Cookie doesn’t disappoint, setting off on a leisurely pace through the foothills of Owl Mountain, which, it turns out, shelters a fascinating history. The trail we travel is called Smuggler’s Trail. In the time of prohibition it was a busy thoroughfare for those smuggling alcohol across the line to thirsty customers in the south. In fact, riders will even come across a carriage sunk into the ground, which ranchers believe was used by settlers. Trail guides share fascinating stories about this era, 1917-1933, but for those more interested in the flora and fauna, the ride is also very informative. During our ride, Bonnie helps spot a snake and a deer and lets us know that she has recently seen bear tracks nearby. She also helps identify plants, berries and trees. Then, of course, there’s the spectacular scenery with breathtaking views as we traverse the ridges, valleys and forests surrounding the ranch. For a beginner, it doesn’t take long to forget one’s nervousness and just enjoy the ride. For the more adventurous there’s swimming with horses, which takes you across the Kettle River on horseback, and the Cascade Canyon tour, which takes riders alongside the falls. When asked how much experience one needs for these more advanced tours, Rick responds, “You have to be older than 10.” Grand Forks resident Sarah Kemper, who

recently took her two boys, Ben, 7, and Aidan, 10, on the beginner tour, says she knew her family was in good hands. “These horses really know what they’re doing,� she said. Owl Mountain works to breed and raise the calmest and friendliest horses it can. Any signs of skittishness would disqualify a horse from working on the ranch. But it’s not all about the people; Rick and Marie also want to make sure the horses enjoy themselves. The horses don’t spend their days stuck in indoor stalls. Between trail rides they have plenty of time for rest, exercise and play. “We want our customers to see horses that are happy and healthy and well-cared for,� says Marie. “The customers respect that and, also, the horses have respect for the people.� “Our primary goal is to offer visitors a positive hands-on experience with a friendly animal,� says Rick. Rick and Marie have both been longtime “horse people.� Rick’s family has been in the horse business for five generations. Meanwhile, when her friends were saving for cars at 16, Marie was saving for a horse. They’ve passed on their love to their two children Chelsey, 16, who helps out with pony rides and who kicked off the 2009 season with a promotional ride all the way to Christina Lake and Ryan, 11, who went on his first pack ride at the age of four. Rides are booked for small groups of up to 12 people with two guides. However, Owl Mountain offers more than just trail rides. Among the services offered are private lessons in both Western and English style horseback riding. In fact, Travis even offered the ranch’s first “cowboy� riding and roping lesson this summer. In the off-season, the ranch keeps busy with a reception hall located in its big red barn. The interior has been renovated to resemble a cowboy saloon. It recently attracted film students from Nelson looking to shoot a western. As well, the Christina Lake firefighters recently rented out the venue for a murder mystery dinner. Rick, an avid antique collector, has begun to fill display cases and hopes to have a small museum of cowboy artifacts in the hall. Meanwhile, Marie’s “pet� project is at the


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Bed & B er Inn rea w o

back of the red barn. She has recently begun a petting zoo with miniature animals, including two goats, a donkey and a horse. “It’s a real treat for city kids to be able to pet the animals,� she says. The team has begun putting in tenting sites and has plans for a campground in the future. However, they’re waiting on the economic turnaround before they determine how much to invest in this new venture. The ebb and flow of the economy is one of the primary challenges for a tourism-based business, says Rick. However, with most of their overhead costs in the care and feeding of

the horses, they are in a better position than most to manage change through the selling and buying of livestock. Customers come from all over Europe and North America with locals increasingly discovering the ranch through word of mouth. Repeat business is one of the benefits of offering a variety of different rides. As I awkwardly make my way down from my ever-so-patient horse, Cookie, I’m already wondering about my next visit. I could take the plunge on the river ride or I could overcome my fear of heights on the canyon tour. Whatever I choose, it’s sure to be an adventure.

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Page 17

outdoor adventure Story by

Tyler Bradley

Rock Solid

Climbing may not be the most popular outdoor activity in the region, but for those who've discovered it, it rocks Page 18

Route 3 Fall 2009

Photos: David R. Gluns

Opposite page: Merik Hladik, co-owner of Gravity Climbing Adventures, climbing a route known as "Another Roadside Attraction" at the Hall Siding Bluffs south of Nelson.


Left: Student climber Carrie Kilbourne flashes a sign while she and other climbers practice in the Gravity Center climbing gym in Nelson.

ne could be forgiven if, on their first foray into the West Kootenay/Boundary area, climbing was not the primary reason for their having alternately packed up a car, climbed aboard a plane, or thumbed a ride into the mountains that comprise our region. Climbing and climbers, by their own admission, do not partake of the typical marketing employed by much of the tourism and travel industry, opting instead to remain low-key, or “off the radar,” a fact that makes the oversight of the amazing climbing in the area excusable, but no less regrettable. The West Kootenay and Boundary Country’s rock, well, it rocks. While much of the focus on Canadian climbing and/or mountaineering has historically been on the peaks and spires accessible from Glacier House, Banff, and today in and around Squamish, the West Kootenay has enjoyed a groundswell these past years in numbers of climbers either relocating to the area, or in the form of vertically addicted locals fortunate enough to have been raised amongst the inclines and bouldering zones available to them. While climbing in its early incarnations in North America was largely a past-time for well-heeled explorers and gentlemen of means and distinction, today it is a sport or lifestyle now shared by men, women, kids of all ages, races, and ethnicities from as broad an array of socio-economic backgrounds as are found in the area.

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A recent addition to the literature on Canadian climbing, Castlegar climber Aaron Kristiansen and co-author Vince Hempsall have recently compiled a terrific guidebook to climbing in the West Kootenay, “West Kootenay Rock Guide.” Covering many of the most popular lines in and around the Valhallas, Slocan, Nelson, Castlegar, Nelson, Rossland, and beyond, this guidebook is packed with photos, maps, directions and an abridged history of the area climbing history. Indispensable, affordable, and available at finer outdoors stores and bookshops, this is another great example of the region’s DIY know-how.

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Route 3 Fall 2009

David R. Gluns

West Kootenay Rock Guide

One of the attractions is certainly the relatively low cost involved with kitting up for climbing, at least where three season rock-climbing is concerned. (Ice-climbing and full-on winter mountaineering are, for the purposes of this story, a horse of an utterly different colour!) Climbing shoes, ropes, and the other basic necessities typically cost a fraction of what a new ski or snowboard set-up might, with the added benefit of enjoying a much longer window for active participation throughout the year. That, and there are no lift-tickets or seasons’ pass costs levied, nor is there the ongoing squabbling over trail ownership and/or maintenance often found in mountain biking. While semi-regular clean up of climbing routes is helpful, existing lines are literally etched in stone, with the addition of new lines occurring almost exclusively on public lands. From the terrifically short yet engaging climbs found at Hall Siding or “Better Than Nothing” (found just outside of Nelson and Rossland respectively), to the Slocan’s Cougar Creek or Gimli to the north, there is something to meet every interest and ability level. Whether it be parkland or readily accessible crown land, one of the best features of living and climbing in this area, as noted by Rossland-based climber Jordie Hall, is “the opportunity to still have a genuine wilderness experience. There’s lots of rock waiting to be discovered, and we’re lucky to have it on our doorsteps. The Valhallas, for example, they’re huge.” Another fine feature of climbing in the Kootenay/Boundary is the scene, or in this particular case, the lack thereof. A recent visitor from the climbing Mecca of Squamish lamented the “loss of habitat for covert climbers” in that area, heartily endorsing what Kinnaird, the Granby River Valley

and other regional offerings provide. “There’s no big scene here, no big attitude. People are just pumped to see you out. In a smaller, quieter place like this, you can focus in more on what your personal goals as a climber are. Focus on your technique instead of who’s wearing what sponsor’s logo. “When crowds get to be an issue, you can’t ‘play-through’ on a climb like you might in golf, so good attitudes go a long way. Nothing’s worse than lumping dirty looks on top of an already physically challenging line.” Indeed, when exposed on a challenging 5.10a (climbing lines are classified/ranked by their technical difficulty), a supportive environment, extended beyond the merely physical advantages of a rope and climbing harness,

goes a long way. Perhaps no more supportive environment can be found than that offered by Gravity Unlimited Adventures. Specializing in guiding and climbing services, Gravity has been around since 1991, now offering indoor as well as the safest outdoor climbing experiences available. From its location on Victoria Street in Nelson, Gravity operates a premier training facility offering a variety of beginner, intermediate and expert classes along with the accompanying lines appropriate to each group. Run by legendary local climber Merik Hladik and his crew of able cohorts, the indoor climbing walls and the portable, party- and event-ready climbing walls on wheels offered by Gravity contribute enormously to the development and progression of local and visiting climbers alike.

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Always Fresh, Always Green

Opposite page: Student climber Jordan Weston belays a fellow climber under the watchful eye of instructor Racheal Marks during the Summer Kids Camp at Gravity Climbing Adventures in Nelson. Above: Rapelling above Genelle, south of Castlegar. Left: Martina Halik prepares to climb above Slocan City.

Todd Weselake

A perfect place to cut your climbing teeth, the customized indoor climbing experience at Gravity Unlimited has the added benefit of taking sudden shifts in weather out of the equation, an enormous factor not lost on Hall or veteran climber Don Vockeroth. The pair emphasizes that while equipment has evolved, climbing is still an inherently dangerous activity, and that unfamiliarity with the terrain and/or weather can be perilous. Vockeroth, a legend in Canadian climbing and outdoors circles, credits not just his longevity but survival, too, to physical and mental discipline. Having pioneered lines in Banff throughout the ‘60s alongside the likes of Brian Greenman, Yvon Chouinard and others, Don is effectively retired

from climbing today, but from his Powderhound ski and sports store in Rossland, continues to advise new and seasoned climbers to keep their wits about them. “I guess I was a junkie for climbing,” he states, “but we took it very serious. We never got killed because of that.” Citing the holy trinity of climbers, Vockeroth further states that climbers must “get a ton of mileage in so you’re familiar with the weather, the backcountry and the rock.” Having benefited from training alongside the Canadian Olympic gymnastics team in his heyday, too, Vockeroth further stresses the importance of good physical conditioning. His advice to beginners? Get limber and strong. Echoing Vockeroth’s recommendations, Jordie Hall offers his own take on climbing 101, too. “Find a good mentor in the community, or take courses. Meet other inspired climbers and just get out there.”

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Page 21

homes by

Graham Tracey

Deep Roots

Three Warfield neighbours treasure the homes they grew up in Page 22

Route 3 Fall 2009

Chris Hammett


fter passing through Warfield’s business district, cruise control pegged at fifty kilometres an hour, I turned right at the Ray Lyn motel and proceeded to get completely lost. Embarrassingly, I took Warfield’s rural side for granted, winding aimlessly along tree-lined dirt roads and over small creeks spanned by pastoral bridges, staring up at gold and green hillsides cleft with miniature canyons, until I almost had to knock on a random door and beg for assistance. I arrived ten minutes late at 490 Wellington Street, the home of Teresa and Barry Baker, and was welcomed warmly inside with an iced tea and a spot in the muchneeded mid-day shade of the sprawling backyard. I had come to explore one of the many streets in Warfield famous for harbouring lovely old houses, well-loved structures off the beaten path with owners that took their time at home seriously. What I found was an entire block of long-time residents who love living in

Chris Hammett

Chris Hammett

John Snelgrove

Warfield, and who shun the conventional dogma that good fences make good neighbours. Built in 1942, Teresa Baker’s house is a classic two-story Cape Cod, maintaining its neutral yet proud white siding and slightly darker roof. She grew up in this house from the age of four, with six siblings sharing four bedrooms and an expansive backyard area cradling a fast-flowing creek. After leaving Warfield for a stint in Calgary, Teresa moved back to the Kootenays with her husband Barry to raise a family, purchasing her childhood home from her parents in 1990. To their mutual delight, Teresa became reunited with two of her life-long neighbours, Annette Jolly next door, and Lynn Miller (Merry) one lot further down the street. Both women were born in the homes, and both structures display the same kind of pride and attention to detail that the Baker house does. In addition to a love of their hometown, this conglomerate of Warfield residents share several things in common: a desire to upkeep and improve their homes, a natural willingness to help one another out, an appreciation for backyard swimming pools, and perhaps most importantly, a love of extended outdoor dinner parties on cool summer nights. In addition, further down the street at 450 Wellington sits Merry Manor, Warfield’s most famous old home, now designated a heritage site. Merry Manor was built in 1898 by Lynn Miller's great grandfather George L Merry. It was the first house in Warfield, and used to be the main postal outlet for the area. The house was purchased by the Bakers in bad condition and lovingly restored to its current glory by Barry, an excellent carpenter who handles all of the family’s

Chris Hammett

Opposite page: Long time Warfield resident Teresa Baker (left), her mother Leila, daughter Alysha and son Joey retreat to the refreshing pool in the backyard of her childhood home. Above: Close friends and neighbours Lynn Miller, Annette Jolly and Teresa Baker in the back yard of the landmark Merry Manor. Top right: The childhood and current home of Teresa Baker and her family. Center right: Neighbour Annette Jolly on her front porch. Bottom right: The Miller home

Fall 2009 Route 3

Page 23

Chris Hammett

Chris Hammett Chris Hammett

Chris Hammett

John Snelgrove

Top: Teresa Baker in her tastefully decorated dining area. Center left: Lynn Miller's grandfather handcrafted the dining room’s beautiful wood walls in the Miller residence. Center right: Inside the front entranceway of the Baker home. Bottom left: The historic Merry Manor, Warfield’s first home, now owned by Teresa and Collin Berdusco. Bottom right: Lynn Miller's recently renovated kitchen, designed by Teresa Baker.

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Route 3 Fall 2009

extensive renovations with ease. Merry Manor is a 19th century gem, standing tall in the middle of a large, meandering lawn, and crowned with an official plaque from the city. When asked why they chose to sell the home and not move in after completing it, Teresa cites an attachment to her childhood home and the privacy that it affords them. Meanwhile, back at the Baker residence, the yard is a true oasis. Surrounded on three sides by grassy hills and tall trees, it has been lovingly landscaped with granite-coloured pavers and long blade grasses. A covered patio overlooks a crystal blue in-ground pool, a saving grace amidst the kind of hot weather the Kootenays can serve up. There is a small garage that the Bakers plan to lift up and move closer to the pool to act as a cabana, replacing it with a more modern garage. These projects will have to wait, however, as Barry is currently atop the house with a large section of roof ripped off, well into a renovation that will enlarge the upstairs bathroom considerably. Inside the Baker house, I find a simple yet functional floor plan. Wide-open doorways separate the rooms, with bold architraves adorning the tops, and classic milled trimwork cascading down to the baseboards, adding a traditional flair to the interior. The floors are a stunning dark oak, with a pleasing glossy finish that contrasts perfectly with the white paint of the trim. Likewise, white crown molding separates a bright ceiling from the canary grass green walls, adding a touch of organic colour and acting as mediator between the floors and trim. The kitchen is open and subtly modern, assuring me that although it fits right in with the classic style of the home, it would not have any problem catering to the throngs of guests that sometimes descend upon the Baker residence. “We have an ongoing tradition of inviting friends over for a New Year’s Day celebration each year,” Teresa explains, before adding, “The party has been known to regularly host thirty or more people.” This attention to detail and beauty is no coincidence, however. Teresa is a well-known interior decorator, operating Teresa Baker Interior Designs, and maintaining a large list of satisfied clients in the Trail area. After building and decorating their home in Calgary, Teresa returned to Warfield eager to pass on her enthusiasm and experience to friends. As I bid the Bakers farewell and began my journey back into the wilds of Warfield, I had to ask if there were any ghosts residing in these old homes. Teresa assured me that while she was sometimes suspicious, she hasn’t found any ghosts yet, only good memories.

local food story by

Fran Wallis

Beautiful Borscht Fall is the perfect time to use fresh local produce to make the hearty Doukhobor soup


Fran Wallis photos

e are a long way from the Motherland but with cooler temperatures and snow dusting the landscape we look for heartier food to keep us warm and comfort us. The traditional fare of the Russian Doukhobors from around our region take advantage of readily available ingredients that grow well in the climate of south-eastern British Columbia and store well in the cold room or root cellar. The well-loved Doukhobor borscht combines substantial root vegetables and brassicas with butter and cream for a rich, savory main-dish soup. Partnered with a leavened white bread and butter, a variety of salads and pickled condiments, borscht

Fall 2009 Route 3

Page 25

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Page 26

Route 3 Fall 2009

is often the main dish served at weddings and funerals. The borscht and blintsi recipes featured here is from Kelly Malakoff, proprietor of Kelly’s Home Baking in Winlaw in the Slocan Valley. The combination of ingredients and preparation methods have been passed on to her from her Doukhobor mother and grandmother– recipes for favourites she’s been eating and helping to prepare since childhood. “I had to keep up my Russian so I could learn bread making from my 86-year old ‘Baba’ (grandmother).” says Malakoff. Malakoff’s family recipe for borscht and many other dishes used cream abundantly but Kelly has successfully adapted them for today’s fat-conscious consumer without sacrificing taste. The traditional Doukhobor vegetarian diet used milk and eggs from the family cow and chickens for protein, as well as garden fresh herbs for unique seasoning. It’s interesting that one of the hallmarks of the early Doukhobor lifestyle was communal living and a popular credo, still adhered to today is “toil and peaceful life.” Many of the Doukhobors living in the Slocan, Castlegar and Grand Forks areas along Highway 3, while no longer living communally, still have strong family ties and embrace the pacifist values of their ancestors and many still work towards a self-sufficient and sustainable lifestyle. Malakoff first offered her Russian food at the Valley View Golf Course restaurant in the Slocan Valley during the winter. But to balance home and family responsibilities she opted to become independent, producing the food from her home-based, certified kitchen. Now well-established in her homebased business, Malakoff continues to vend her tasty The traditional Doukhobor wood spoons were made Russian fare at local by Kelly's late grandfather, Peter Soukeroff, on a wood farmer’s markets and lathe that he fabricated from used car parts. The festivals throughout crocheted table cloth is also the handwork of Kelly the spring, summer Malakoff. and fall. This winter her products are available in several commercial outlets in the Slocan Valley and Nelson area. She estimates that she has sold 7,000 litres of borscht since she began preparing Doukhobor food in 2002 — now that’s a lot of shredded cabbage. The Doukhobor diet of today is not dissimilar to the “slow food” movement and the 100-mile diet becoming popular today. Each emphasizes the importance of choosing locally grown produce, whether from the backyard patch, or the local thriving farmers’ markets that have sprung up throughout the region in recent years as well. Either way each provides a hands-on involvement with what we eat, aiming toward fostering a healthy and sustainable way of eating that benefits the planet and ourselves. So put on the soundtrack to Dr. Zhivago and cozy up to the wood stove with War and Peace while this low-cost and low-fat version simmers, filling your home with the aromatic fragrance of dill.

Borscht A hearty main-dish soup – Serves 10

Sauté the first seven ingredients in a six-quart pot over medium heat. Stir regularly till vegetables are tender, about ten minutes. Add water and halved potatoes and simmer until potatoes are tender. Remove potatoes to a bowl, mash them and add cream, mixing well. Return creamy potatoes to main pot and stir in. Continue to stir regularly to avoid scorching the creamy mixture. Add the diced potatoes, shredded cabbage, green pepper and green onions. Stir thoroughly and simmer until all vegetables are done. Remove pot from heat and add fresh dill and black pepper and let sit for a couple of minutes to allow flavours to blend. Stir again prior to serving. Serve steaming hot with chunks of fresh bread and butter or blintsi.

Blintsi (Raised Crepes) Serves 10 2 c. milk 1/4 tsp. salt 1 c. flour 1/8 tsp. baking soda 4 eggs 3/4 tbsp. baking powder Bring milk just to a boil and stir in salt. Whisk in baking soda and let cool to lukewarm. Beat in flour and eggs with electric mixer. Add baking powder blending thoroughly. Preheat cast iron frying pan, grease lightly with vegetable oil. Pour 1/2 c. batter in centre of pan and tilt and turn pan rapidly to spread batter evenly over bottom. Cook till lightly brown on bottom, flip and cook other side the same. Fold the blintsi in half and place in a covered cloth-lined casserole dish to keep warm. Continue cooking the rest of the batter in the same way. To serve, drizzle with melted butter and top with your favourite preserves or syrup — perfect for a holiday brunch.

Courtesy Kelly Malakoff

2 c. canned tomatoes (blended) 1/2 c. butter 1/4 c. celery (chopped fine) 1 small beet (grated) 1/2 c. carrots (grated) 1/2 c. onions (chopped fine) 1/2 tbsp. salt 1 1/2 quarts water 3 medium potatoes (peeled & cut in half) 1/2 c. potatoes (diced) 1/2 c. whipping cream 3 c. shredded cabbage 1/2 c. green onions (chopped fine) 1/2 c. green peppers (chopped fine) 4 tbsp fresh dill (chopped fine) 1/2 tsp. black pepper

Kelly Malakoff prepares recipes handed down to her from her Doukhobor mother and grandmother, in her home-based kitchen.

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Fall 2009 Route 3

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history by

Greg Nesteroff

Mysteries of the Cody Caves The caves between Nelson and Kaslo have long fascinated visitors, and writers It was only a happy afterthought which suggested our visit, well supplied with candles, to the Queen Victoria Cave. A thousand feet below Tom’s claim I had been prospecting along the hillside on the Queen’s birthday, and quite by accident discovered the entrance to the cavern. – Roger Pocock, The Noble Five


he Cody Caves near Ainsworth have fascinated locals and tourists alike ever since Henry Cody apparently found them while prospecting in the late 1880s. They have been studied extensively, protected as a provincial park, and featured in magazines, books, and newspapers. But it’s an early literary appearance, in which the caves were supposedly described as having walls of gold, that has long interested me. While often alluded to, it was clear no one had ever actually read it. So I went looking. In 1902, the Nelson Daily News explained Roger Pocock’s short story, The Noble Five, originally appeared in 1890 — although it didn’t say where — and was reprinted in The Argosy magazine of November 1899. Searching for it proved frustrating: when I found The Argosy on microfilm, I discovered it was published three times per year, so there was only a September-December issue. And the story wasn’t in it. Baffled, I gave up. But a few years later it became a moot point: as I searched the ProQuest database of 19th century periodicals for something unrelated,

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Route 3 Fall 2009

The earliest known photo of the Cody Caves, 1913. Two of the kids are Sutton and Charles Wheeler, the rest unidentified. The sign, which says “Victoria Cave,” may be tied to a recently rediscovered story by Roger Pocock. Courtesy Mavis Stainer.

there it was! An accidental discovery just like Henry Cody’s. The Noble Five appeared in Peterson’s magazine of August 1897, and although entirely fictional, it nevertheless contained the earliest known references to the caves. The story features Jack Robinson (not his real name) and Rose Innes (not her real name), each in Ainsworth for a secret reason. Rose arrives on the same boat as Col. Hiram W. Giggleswick, a Boston mining promoter. Rose doesn’t reveal what has brought her to town, but Giggleswick makes his intent plain: he wants to buy the Noble Five claim from Jack’s partner, Blind Tom. Only everyone knows the claim is worthless, so why does the Colonel want it so badly, and why does Tom refuse to sell? (The real Noble Five was one of the claims that started the Silvery Slocan rush, although it was not in the Ainsworth camp.) Jack, smitten with Rose, takes her on a picnic to what he calls the Queen Victoria cave: The place had always impressed me as being very beautiful, but now the glittering walls, the shadowy ghost-like assemblages of columns seemed part rather of some unearthly and unreal vision. The floor of white stalagmite was broken in places by little pools, each like a turquoise set in fretted ice. We stumbled upon exquisite growths, like living coral, and all the while below the hollow floor one could hear the murmur of a rivulet which was lost near the mouth of the cavern in a channel which apparently had no outlet. Jack tells Rose the Noble Five is directly

above them, and Rose suggests all Blind Tom has to do is blast past the boulders until he cuts into the ore vein. Then she realizes someone has already done it! Jack leads Rose through a narrow passageway, and to their astonishment, the walls are made “We stumbled upon of gold. They discover a larger exquisite growths, passage, lined like living coral, with even richer yellow chlorides, and all the while then emerge in a large chamber — below the hollow face to face with floor one could Col. Giggleswick. The rest of the hear the murmur of story is a bit of a rivulet which was silly fluff, involving more surprising lost near the mouth twists and a race up the Columbia of the cavern in a River, but it all channel which works out in the end. apparently had Roger Pocock no outlet.” was an interesting guy. He came to Canada from England with his missionary father in the 1880s and joined the North West Mounted Police, but was discharged with a pension after freezing his feet and losing some toes. This

didn’t prevent him from leading a life of high adventure, including turns as a hunting guide, missionary, sailor, soldier, and author. He made a solo horseback trip from Canada to Mexico, sailed the world, and founded the Legion of Frontiersman. Somehow he also found time to visit the Kootenays, and devoted a chapter to it in his 1903 book, Following the Frontier. Curiously, the earliest surviving photo of the Cody Caves shows a group of kids at its mouth

holding a sign that says “Victoria Cave, July 27, 1913.” Was this name adopted from Pocock’s story? Or is that what they were called when Pocock explored them? They have been known variously as the Cody’s Caves, Cody Cave, or Cody Caves since at least 1902. Pocock was not the only author inspired by the caves. They also figure prominently in Eric Wilson’s 1983 children’s novel, The Kootenay Kidnapper.


“Ever heard of the Cody Caves? We’re taking an expedition into them on Friday. Like to join us?” “For sure! I’ve never been inside a cave.” Kendall Steele laughed. “It’s an unforgettable experience.” He was right. Tom would never forget what happened in Cody Caves. Spoiler: the book’s eponymous villain snatches children and hides them in the caves.

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Life in the West

ry Region Kootenay/Bounda

Rock Solid Climbing in thendary Kootenay/ Bou region rocks!


ass Studio The artists at Ourgl n work and Gallery in Nelso connectedly collectively and

There’s Nothing Like it!


that can top There isn’t much beans freshly coffee made from backyard roasted in our own

SCHT BEAUTIFUL BOR t time to use

Fall is the perfec ce to make fresh local produ hobor soup the hearty Douk 3 Fall 2009 ROUTE

Page 1

To advertise in the Winter issue, contact Chris at 1-877-443-2191 or email

Fall 2009 Route 3

Page 29


with Pat Field by

Kyra Hoggan


etting a city’s business community to recognize the value of art as an economic driver... that’s certainly an ambitious goal, but Castlegar Sculpturewalk’s Pat Field says the result will be well worth it. He says a marriage of commerce and culture is, in fact, just what Castlegar needs to enhance and revitalize its downtown core. Field, an artist himself, says he was flattered when the local Communities in Bloom (CiB) organization approached him to see about commissioning one of his sculptures to display in the downtown core as public art. Field, though, had grander plans, which he shared with CiB volunteers — and Castlegar Sculpturewalk was born. Field says he’s delighted to explain the concept to everyone and anyone with an interest, as the project cannot help but flourish if the whole community gets involved. Q: What is Sculpturewalk? A: It’s a program to bring both culture and economic energy to downtown Castlegar. Each year, we’ll invite 15 to 20 artists to loan us outdoor sculptures for the entire year. The whole community is engaged as they vote for their favourite piece, the People’s Choice Award winner, which the city will then purchase as a legacy sculpture, to put on permanent display. Q: Where does the business community enter the picture? A: In several ways — businesses can sponsor a sculpture for $1,000, which will pay for the pedestal and plaque we’ll build to display the piece. After the initial judging year, businesses can also purchase sculptures, or even lease them, to display on or in their premises. Q: Why would they bother... what’s in it for them? A: Obviously, they’ll generate both advertising and community goodwill by participating, but the real payoff will come as Sculpturewalk sparks the interest and attention of the public. The downtown core will become a destination in its own right, with visitors and residents alike heading down to check out the artwork on display. The increased traffic will, in turn, foster commercial enterprise, like rooftop garden cafes, and gift shops, and ice cream parlours, and... you get the idea. That’s not to mention attractions like musicians, community events and gatherings, that sort of thing... which will, in turn, draw more people. Once the momentum starts to build, the potential is limitless. It’s a tested working model that already has a proven track record of success. Q: Proven track record? How so? A: The idea came from Sioux Falls, S.D., where they’ve been running a Sculpturewalk program for six years now. We approached them about

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Route 3 Fall 2009

Kyra Hoggan

Sculpturewalk Pat Fields stands with his creation, Castlegar Sculpturewalk’s first legacy piece, which was unveiled in July of this year in the city’s new Spirit Square. Entitled “Rainbow,” the piece is meant to symbolize the rainbow of opportunities available in Castlegar to contribute to, and give back to, your community.

it, and developed an international partnership (through which) they’ll mentor our Castlegar Sculpturewalk. In Sioux Falls, it took about three years to really take off, but now they’re seeing a direct benefit, or return on investment, of about 250 per cent, and that doesn’t factor in all the spin-off gains that come when your downtown is vibrant and busy, and your community is engaged. Q: How do you ensure the quality of artwork remains high enough to create the kind of upward spiral you’re looking for, and that you get enough artists to participate, year after year? A: For artists, the recognition they gain from this will reach far beyond Castlegar city limits: they’ll be eligible for so much more (in terms of art shows, competitions and other programs) after participating in an internationally recognized venue like this. Within the year itself, we’ll have $10,000 in prizes for things like Best in Show, Best Bronze, that sort of thing (the money comes from grants, the city and business donours). The People’s Choice Award sculpture will be bought by the city for $10,000, but other sculptures can be bought as well — in Sioux Falls, businesses have bought sculptures for their own premises or to be donated to the city. Then there’s the leasing program: after the initial year, the sculptures can be leased for $1,000 a year. $750 of that goes back to the artist, and $250 goes to the Sculpturewalk program. We have so many extraordinarily talented, capable artists in the Basin. This is an opportunity to let them shine while energizing the local economy, increasing the city’s cultural draw, and enhancing the overall quality of life in our city. Q: If people want to know more, or to participate in the process (since the entire program is volunteer-driven), what should they do? A: This is a very logistically complicated program, so we have opportunities for everyone to get involved, no matter their interests or skill-sets. They can visit our website at, email me at or call me at 250-365-0425.

special places photo by

Madeleine Guenette


estival Nelson is an annual high school music festival hosted by L.V. Rogers Secondary School, Trafalgar Middle School and the Nelson United Church. It attracts around 2,000 students coming from all over the province. Keith Todd, the music teacher at Trafalgar, asked me to produce a photo that would connect Nelson and the music. I asked him to join me under the big orange bridge and bring his instrument. Kootenay Lake was calm and the reflection and light were perfect at 9:30 in the morning.

Fall 2009 Route 3

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Great Prizes Enter your photo today! Contest closes Oct 1.

Photo Contest: Show Us Your Basin The Canadian Columbia River Basin is many things. It is valleys, vistas and unique geography. It is rainforests, grasslands and deserts. Itis home to reptiles, birds, fish and mammals. It irrigates, it hydrates, itrecreates, it generates. We boat, swim, skip rocks, bathe and fish in it. We light our cabins, cottages and lodges by the river’s strength. The Columbia Basin – with its diversity of people and enterprise, staggering natural beauty, abundant resources – is a special place worth taking care of. We are connected by this shared responsibility. In its past, present and future, the Columbia River Basin is many things. What is it to you? Show your Columbia Basin in photos!

“The Basin’s forested mountains and waterfilled valleys weave a magic on people that transforms visitors into residents and continually draws back home the Basin Diaspora. Basin residents are passionate about their communities, their environment and the natural beauty and wonder of the land. Basin residents are people who are living just where they want to be.” Wayne Lundeberg Community Liaison

“The Basin is the spirit of its people. No matter how and when they found this incredible region, they all seem to bring a similar spirit of self-reliance and determination, an appreciation of their natural surroundings and a willingness to try anything new. This is reflected in their homes, gardens and in all their artistic endeavours. I think the geography and beauty of the Columbia River and its basin challenges and dares its residents to be unique and creative.”

CBT is looking for images that show what the Columbia Basin means to you. Winning photos will be used in upcoming CBT publications and promotional materials, as well as featured on CBT’s website. Submit your photos by October 1, 2009 at

Lynda Lafleur Community Liaison Northwest Basin

w w w . c b t . o r g

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