Monthly archive

April 2016

THE APEX DIARY OF JACK STOCKS

in Apex Mountain Resort/Okanagan by
APX 087 copy

APX 087 copy

December 9th, 1961 Penticton Herald

Explosive Apex Growth Could Make Penticton A Winter Mecca

APEX LOGO COPYIn January 1959, after preliminary discussions on a personal basis, a meeting was called by H.R. McGregor and Jack Stocks and attended by J. Gibson, H. Donald, J. Dalrymple, Walter Powell, A. King, John Leir, P. Workman and Harley Hatfield. This meeting was called purely as a result of a decision to try and revitalize skiing in this area. It was recognized from the first that it was purely a round table discussion and two cardinal points had to be made by this group: Namely it was useless to make any attempt at revitalizing skiing unless adequate snow was available for a sufficient period. Because of this everything below a level of 3500’ in altitude was out of the question and therefore sites were sought which would provide this necessary depth and season. Secondly, the site had to have the proper accessibility.

It was well known for the years since the end of the war, that a group of ardent skiers led by Jack Stocks and his senior Scouts had rendezvoused at Christmas and New Years for a camping and skiing holiday on Apex Mountain and its adjacent peak, Beaconsfield Mountain. This is an alpine area of between 6000’ and 7000’ altitude with snow from Dec. 1st to Easter. The first problem was therefore solved.

The problems of access were not easily solved as the current logging road to a timber reserve went through private property. After considerable negotiations it became necessary to purchase a large ranch which lay astride the proposed road site in order to gain a right-of-way through this area. This was done at considerable cost to the company (Apex Alpine Recreations Ltd.). However, the right-of-way was obtained and then the company resold the ranch to Orville Ray who proposed developing it into a Dude Ranch in summer and a winter skating and tobogganing site in winter.

In attempting to establish the area as a Provincial Park so as to obtain access to it for construction purposes without having to purchase land, a small difficulty was encountered. It was found that there were several mineral claims and a cabin belonging to Carroll Aikins of Naramata on the land in question. When the problem was explained to Mr. Aikins, he agreed to relinquish his claims so that the areas bounded by these could be incorporated into the new park. Mr. Aikins also agreed to relinquish his rights to the cabin on the stipulation that it should be at the exclusive disposal of the First Penticton Scout Troupe who for many years had used it for camping and skiing. The second problem was solved.

November 8th, 1964

Jack Stocks 1964
Jack Stocks 1964

We were up at Apex cutting down a few trees at the top of Juniper near tower 8. It was a miserable day, snowing light, wet snow. We were burning, working in smoke with wet gloves etc.; you know, wet clothes. We climbed back up to tower 9, to the Jeep –  puff,  puff – tired.  Drove  down  to  the lodge tired and stiff, dirty as hell; but sort of exhilarated.

Outside the lodge was a great big Yankee car with a big, fat guy sitting inside all dressed up in a great big car coat with the windows shut tight, listening loudly to the football game while smoking a big cigar. Somebody peers in the window and asks about the game. The guy opens the window a crack, removes the cigar for the moment and says “Great game, the Lions are doing very well!” then closes the window. It just struck me as a perfect example of the typical North American sportsman – Gad!!

As to the road, the Government is spending approximately $30,000 on Green Mountain and Apex roads. They are completely renovating and widening from Boulder Creek down to Ray’s. They should be finished in about 10 days. The hairpin turn where the loggers lost their load is gone! A long culvert with huge fill installed. The logger’s short cut is now the new road and it eliminates three bad corners. At the same time they are working lower down at Allen Grove and the bridge where the road wanders around on the flat dotted with boulders has been staked and is straight as a die. At last, after all those years of saying “It wouldn’t take much”, finally they are doing it.

Ray’s Ranch Lodge is three quarters finished and looks real sharp. He has a huge stone  fireplace in  it, eleven  guest  rooms, a dining room and bar. Every two rooms share a bathroom with bath. Ralph West, the new owner, showed us the lodge on Friday. He’s a real neat, young guy; completely different from his predecessor. The concession in our lodge should be 100% better for it.

Apex lodge extension is about 90% completed. A propane power plant is now operating  in a  new  building  and the  new  septic tank has been installed.

The T-Bar is 95% complete with the cable spliced and engine tested. They are installing the drops as well.

The new hill is groomed, almost to perfection. All previous reported piles of trees are either burned or buried, most in the creek at the bottom of the hill.

The second new hill makes a longer, less steep swing to the north and back to the Golden Zone road. It is now being cut out through light timber. The area at the bottom of the T-Bar is changed beyond recognition. It is opened up like a big bowl with new beginner hill running up to the lodge on one side and the T-Bar running up another side with the new hill running up farther over.

August 16th, 1968

The original Gun Barrell club house
The original Gun Barrell club house

The Apex report on the expansion program for 1968: A $100,000 program is now underway. Included is a $51,000 Mueller T-Bar, 2400 feet in length. The top station of this lift is located at the bottom of the present intermediate (Juniper) hill, right near the start of the “Sissy” trail. It runs down from there to the sawmill site. A third bunny type run will connect the parking lot with the bottom terminal of the new lift.

Extensive clearing is being carried out in this new area. For this year, two major new runs will be opened – one immediately adjacent to the new lift, the other will swing out in an arc to the south of the lift and end up down at the mill site. This run will be approximately somewhere below the bottom of the “pit”.

The old T-Bar will be renovated and shortened to about 2400’. The large island of trees on the old T-Bar hill, between the lift and the main run, has been completely removed by bulldozer and changed the character of the hill. It is now very open and wide, and will now be more of an intermediate hill.

Other major improvements will include those to the lodge and the septic system.

An $11,000 Nodwell snowcat is to be purchased for snow grooming, lift maintenance, emergencies etc.

All this work is proceeding well on schedule. The lift line is all cleared and about half of the clearing of the new runs has been done. All the concrete foundations for the new lift have been poured. Unfortunately, just after this was done, Al Menzies came down with appendicitis and he is recovering from surgery. Al was supervising the crew that was doing all this work so I hope he will be well enough to resume this week. We are not contracting any of this out to save ourselves some money.

APX 096The Province has repaved the stretch between Kusler’s Ranch turnoff (the bridge) and Allen Grove. The pavement had broken up badly this past year due to poor conditions during the original paving. Also completed is the half mile or so through Allen Grove. So the road is now completely paved to Apex ranch.

In addition the Government is spending $10,000 on the Apex access road this year. Work to be done will include widening, blasting rock sections and blind corners above Shatford Creek; clearing the lower side of the right-of-way to facilitate widening and snow removal, ditching and gravelling. Ten thousand bucks doesn’t go far over 9 miles, but every little bit helps. If they spend that much every year; we’ll soon have a first rate road up there.

The Finances: The $100,000 required is being raised roughly as follows – $20,000 surplus from last year, $25,000 to be new capital raised by sale of shares and debentures. The balance of $55,000 is to be borrowed from the bank.

We are all very hopeful that this new hill will be a true intermediate ski area and attract the casual family skier.

October 3rd, 1968

Apex is going great guns. I was up there  today and there were two  big cats  working on one hill! What a difference to clearing by hand! The towers are all installed on the new lift and all that is left is to install the sheaves and string the cable. And man, you should see the road. For some unknown and amazing reason, the Provincial budget for the road has increased from $10,000 to $20,000! And they are doing a beautiful job.

November 8th, 1968

Last week I was in Vancouver helping Al Menzies man the Apex booth at the Vancouver Ski Fair in the PNE Showmart. It was the first one I had been to and was really great. Thousands of people went through which is quite amazing when you consider they each paid $1.75 just to get in! All the Pacific Northwest ski areas had booths, as well  as ski  shops, ski  companies, ski  boot companies, ski clothing manufacturers etc. They had a huge moving ski ramp which some of the hot shot skiers from the States demonstrated on short skis. Some of them even did flips! Al introduced me to Olympic Gold Medalist Stein Erikson which was a great thrill.

It won’t be long now before the new ski season is underway. They are already skiing at Mt. Baker and Whistler. Our expansion program at Apex is just about complete with the new lift just about ready to go. The Government has spent $30,000 on the road and what a difference. Apex has also bought the snowcat to groom and pack the runs. It can be used for maintenance and breakdowns as well.

January 9th, 1969

APX 087 copyOn December 29th it turned very cold and remained frigid until about January 1st. It was so cold up at Apex (about 40˚°below) that we had to shut down for five days, and as a result, lost about $5000 in ticket revenues that cannot be regained. After New Years Day, the skiing was quite good, although we could have used a bit more snow. Everybody seems very pleased with the new lift. It really is quite something. When you come barrelling down from the top of the Poma, down the intermediate only to discover another 2400’ of hill below yet to ski!

We had a lot of fresh snow this week, so I plan to go up tomorrow after lunch and cut some powder.

January 16th, 1969

Since the holidays, things have improved and we are now getting good crowds at Apex again. The new lift works beautifully and everybody thinks it’s great. I  bought myself a pair of Lange boots which I am gradually getting used to. At first they really hurt in front of the ankles.

The snowpack, I would say, is about normal or even a little below normal for this time of year. Apparently a lot of the snow we have been getting down in the valley is confined to the lower elevations. For example, when I left the house to go skiing on Sunday, there was about 5 inches of new snow outside. When I got to the mountain, there was only about two inches. However, the snow is settling nicely and the powder areas are getting good. I can ski the Pipe and the Tongue now without walking out as the connecting trails have been cut out to the new lift.

June 16th, 1969

And now some devastating news about Apex; last night we had our annual shareholders meeting and when it came to new business, a letter was read. It was an offer by five of the existing shareholders (Dawson, Betts, Sharp, Meiklejohn and Raitt) to purchase all the assets of the company! Well, what a bombshell! The offer was $10 a share, same as we paid originally, to be paid 50% in cash and the remaining 50% over the next two years with interest. It was brought to a vote and passed overwhelmingly to sell. There were 25 shareholders at the meeting and a number of proxies.

The whole thing happened so fast that it came as a shock to those of us who had nursed the project along from the onset. The whole thing seemed rather cold-blooded, especially as we were given no previous warning that such an offer was afoot.

The problem was that most of the shareholders seemed anxious to get their initial investment out as they had waited 8 years with no return. Another problem is that there seems to be no end to expansion and demand for more capital. It is increasingly difficult to get it from 50 shareholders, each of whom have a relatively small investment in the company. Another advantage to a smaller ownership group is that you can be damn sure they are going to devote a lot of time to the business to make sure it goes. There is some talk of Sharp becoming the new manager with Menzies reverting to the ski school. It’s the end of an era.

Feb. 3rd, 1970

APX 003 copyApex Alpine Recreations Ltd. has sold to five of the shareholders. It was a bit of a shock at the time, but it was probably for the best. Most of the original 50 shareholders were involved with a company that they weren’t spending full-time at and that made for some problems. Also it was always difficult getting ones ideas across (and I was president for several years) and trying to convince the board of directors.

Apex continues to improve and expand under the new ownership. I no longer have any involvement in the company.

Last year some major improvements were made to the lodge, including building overnight guest accommodation. This year a $100,000 chairlift replaced the original T-Bar, installed in 1964.

I am still skiing regularly.

Editors note: 

Jack’s contribution was never forgotten. His dedication to his Scout Troupe, Apex Alpine, the Downtown Business Association and to his craft as a photographer, knew no bounds.

Jack Passed away in 1979 after his best business year, ever. It was an untimely death to cancer.

Apex remembered him with the dedication of the “Stocks Triple Chair” in February of 1982.

 

 

A DEADLY DATE WITH THE HOPE SLIDE

in Fraser/Hope by
SLIDE 3 copy

SLIDE 3 copyThe catastrophic event, commonly referred to as the Hope Slide occurred on Saturday morning, January 9th, 1965. There has been books and articles written on this geological event, enough to fill a bookcase. I would like to revisit this bit of history from the aspect of those killed in the slide. Forgive my literary licence.     

A Clear Road

Bernie Beck had just completed the mechanical alterations to his bright yellow ‘59 Chevy convertible. The new carburetor and the shaved manifold really increased the horsepower. Bernie loved this car; it was his mechanical trophy. Bernie had been working as a counter salesman for Westone Enterprises in Penticton. He was just 27.

His best friend Dennis Arlitt had been in the passenger seat of the convertible many times and was extremely jealous of Bernie’s car. He worked long hours at the Growers Co-op packing plant to try and save enough to get his own car. Dennis had a girl friend, Mary Kalmakoff, and they and Bernie’s wife, Shirley made up a close foursome. Dennis was 23 and Mary, 21. She had worked with Dennis packing fruit at the plant since she moved to Penticton in 1958. Mary had come from a very close ‘Sons of Freedom’ Doukhobor family and had been separated from her family when she was younger. Despite this, she was a vibrant and loving young woman who stayed close to her 5 other sisters. It was this feeling of family that directed Mary to ask Dennis if he could ask Bernie to drive them to see her sister Laura, in Agassiz. Bernie thought it would be great to give the car a workout and drive Mary to her sister’s place. After all he could never say no to a friend.
So after shift was over, Bernie picked up Dennis and Mary, and around 10:30 that evening they took to the highway.

Tom Starchuk hadn’t seen his wife Ann for more than an hour in weeks. He had been hauling hay to the coast continually since fall. The 38 year old trucker had just loaded fourteen tons of hay at the Glaicar Ranch at Grandview Flats near O’Keefe Ranch. Joe Glaicar invited him to lunch before leaving for the 10 hour haul to Cloverdale. By 2 PM, Tom was behind the wheel. Weather wasn’t all that good, so instead of his usual trip through the Fraser Canyon, Tom took the south route of Highway 97 to the Hope-Princeton. The load seemed to be riding evenly, but he stopped occasionally to check his straps and cables. He was pleased with this truck; not new but as of this season, it was all his.

Norman “Steph” Stephanishin pulled away from the Arrow Transfer yard in Kamloops with a full tank and pup of gasoline destined for Kelowna. His big yellow Kenworth purred softly as it sailed down Highway 1 to the Monte Lake turnoff. It would only be a couple of hours before he could unload then off to Vancouver empty.

Westward Bound

SLIDE 4 copyThere was a little more snow than expected, thought Steph as he climbed the hill toward Allison Pass. He saw lights in his mirrors so he politely signaled the car to pass. It was a nice bright yellow Chev convertible and the girl in passenger seat gave him a little wave. It quickly disappeared ahead of him. He had passed three semi trucks heading to Princeton but other than the yellow car, there was no other traffic.

Bernie was joking and laughing with Dennis to keep awake. Mary had crawled into the back seat to sleep a little, feeling weary after her long shift at the plant. The boys were pleased with the power of the car and it’s handling on the snowy, curves of the road. Bernie gave a little yell as the lights reflected off the snowbank ahead. What he thought was just a curve in the road was a huge wall of snow completely covering both lanes of the highway.

The Chev crumpled as they hit head on. The car jumped onto the slide and buried itself to the windshield. Bernie hurled forward onto the steering wheel and jammed his knees under the dash. Dennis hit his head as he slipped under the dash. Mary started screaming with the abrupt wakening of the collision. Bernie jumped out, in considerable pain and yelled, “Oh, no! My car, my car!” He crawled onto the crumpled hood to inspect the damage. “Not too bad.” he thought. “Dennis, help me get her out. Dennis and Mary seemed to have made it through the mishap unscathed. Bernie on the other hand, had really damaged his knees. He was limping badly. Mary said they should go back to Sumallo Lodge and get help. It was just a couple of miles back.

“I’m not leaving the car.” said Bernie, “I can get her out. Just help me dig around and get the back wheels on the road. Then she’ll drive out, I’m sure”
Mary turned to see lights coming down the highway toward them. She took off running to get help.

Steph had just geared down seeing the lights in the distance ahead of him. They seemed stopped in the middle of the road, so he was cautious. He pulled over as far as he could, stopped and got out. A young woman came running toward him and yelled “We need help! Can you help us?”

Steph reassured her that he would help. As he got closer he could see that it was the nice yellow Chev that had passed him a few miles back. A huge wall of snow about 30 feet high had closed the road in both directions. A young man limped toward him, “Please mister, do you have a shovel? I need to get my car out. It’s high-centred in the snow.”

“You look hurt, fella. You sure you’re OK?” asked Steph.
“Ya sure. Just need to get my car going.”
Steph could see another man at the car but the woman was shivering. “Come into the cab and get warm.” he said to Mary. She was more than cold, so she said “OK.”
Bernie introduced himself to Steph and took his shovel and hobbled to the car. Steph thought he should turn around and go back to Sumallo and get help, but with the pup attached there wouldn’t be enough room to get around. Just then a loaded hay truck came around the bend.

Tom had lots of time to slow when he saw the bright lights of the tanker truck ahead of him. The driver was walking slowly toward him with a bright hand lamp. He pulled the rig to the side about 100 feet from the other truck and got out as Steph approached.
“We have a slide ahead,” said Steph, “the road will be closed until Highways gets here.”
“Oh hell, I’m already six hours behind. Any place to turn around?”
“Not close,” replied Steph.
Tom went with the others to inspect the car. They took Bernie aside and explained there would be no way to get the car out. Bernie wouldn’t believe it and begged both drivers to put a line on the car and pull it out. Tom looked at Steph and they both looked up the mountain, then at the slide and said “no way”. Tom was exhausted so he excused himself. He would wait for help from Allison Pass highways crew at daylight. He crawled into his cab and went to sleep.

Steph tried to console Bernie about the car, but Bernie wouldn’t stop digging. Steph stated
he would walk to Sumallo and see if he could get a wrecker to come back and help. He was only a short distance down the road when a westbound Greyhound bus pulled up. Steph filled the driver in about the slide. The driver said “Get in,” and he backed down the road and turned about at the Allison Lumber Company road. From there it was just a few minutes to Sumallo Lodge.  Steph and the bus driver, Dave Hughes, found that the public phone was dead. The snow slide must have knocked out the line. Bob Sowden from the lodge couldn’t reach anyone on the radio phone either. After considerable conversation about the unusual closeness of the slide area to Lodge, Sowden got the drivers into his truck and raced to the site. As they arrived they could see that the two young men had not given up on the convertible. They were still digging.

Sowden told Bernie he would drive to Allison Pass, then bring his wrecker back to haul him out. He got back behind the wheel and headed back to Sumallo. Bob Sowden assumed he could get a front-end loader to the scene within a couple of hours.

Bernie and Dennis were exhausted and getting hypothermia. It would soon be light and they were still no closer to extricating the car. It was agreed to call it quits for now. As they walked toward the idling trucks, there was a vibration under their feet. They stopped and turned toward the mountain above them. They heard an ominous rumbling.
SLIDE 2 copy“We better get to the trucks, now!” screamed Dennis. “We’ve got to get out of here”.
They rushed to the hay truck to warn Tom, sleeping in the cab, just as the volume of rocks and trees hit the snow slide at tremendous speed and terrifying power. The car disappeared in an instant.
“Mister, run, run….slide!” screamed Bernie over the noise.
Tom jumped into the drivers seat and slammed the truck into gear to back down the road. Just then a sea of snow, mud and rock from the backlash wave bounced off the face of Mount Coulter and hit them straight on.

Dennis and Bernie just disappeared into the muck. The trucks rolled toward the oncoming rock slide and were crushed. Hay scattered the distance of the double wave while the cabs disintegrated. The empty tanks seemed to float for an instant as they sailed back up the peak. Then all went quiet.

Back at Sumallo Lodge, Steph and mail truck driver, Len Lloyd were concerned for the young people at the slide. They got into the mail truck and drove up the road. It was nearly 7am. They were only half a mile up the road when they came to another snow slide that had come down from the rock bluff adjacent. Steph had been right to warn the group about other slides. It was hoped that the trucks were just between the two slides.

SLIDE 3 copySteph would have climbed the slide toward the trucks until Len pointed out that there was a lot of rocks and trees in this slide. Not a wise move to try and hike over it. As light started to filter into the valley, the two men began to see a bit further up the valley. It became evident that this was not a snow slide. Coulter Mountain was bare of trees. Could the slide have come from there?

Then daylight hit Johnson Peak. The two men were speechless. No one could have survived this.

Steph’s heart sank as he thought of the four people he seemed to have just left moments before. He grieved for them as he thought of his good fortune to have escaped it. “Thank God,” he thought, “Thank God.”

AFTERMATH

Highways Minister Phil Gaglardi flew over the site soon after being notified and arranged for search and rescue at the site. By Sunday evening, both Beck and Starchuk’s bodies had been recovered. It was impossible to imagine where the other remains might be in the debris.
Gaglardi wanted the highway opened as soon as possible. When the Geologists had examined the slide site, construction began to push a road through. It took 21 days for a crude path to be pushed over the slide.
The rest, as they say, is history.

Sources:
Anderson, F. Hope Slide Story
Province, The Vancouver Jan. 11, 1965
Herald, The Penticton

WALKING THE WIRE

in Cariboo/Old Cariboo Trail by

CPM 032A copy

Suspension Bridges over the Fraser River

An Essay by Brian Wilson

I have always been fascinated by the methods gold-seekers to the Cariboo crossed the mighty Fraser River. This river is not a creek to ford; it’s a killer of a river that only the most foolish of men would try to cross without caution. The Royal Engineers under Governor Douglas were the enablers of crossings of the river to the goldfields. There were no fewer than three bridges built over the torrent between 1863 an 1868. Two still exist today.

DOG CREEK BRIDGE - Copy
Churn Creek Bridge

Part of the Port Douglas road to Lilloett became the Gang Ranch. The suspension bridge at Churn Creek (Dog Creek), built in 1863, is still used by the ranch today. The Alexandra bridge near Spuzzum is a heritage site next to the new Highway 1 bridge.

With the discovery of the Murchie collection of glass negatives came a chronicle of the building of another suspension bridge over the Fraser that few remember. It is the Chimney Creek Bridge near William’s Lake that became Highway 20 to Bella Coola. It was built by a pioneer of modern bridge building, Sam Smith. Not a lot is known of Sam Smith’s background. As he was a BC native and had a home in New Westminster at the turn of

MURCHIE
Archibald Murchie at Princeton 1905

the century, it is assumed that he had worked on several other bridges, including the unusual cantilever bridge in the Fraser Canyon, the Cisco CPR railway bridge at Keefers.

This assumption is because Mr. Smith worked for Waddell and Hendrick, famed North American bridge builders and structural Engineers. As a matter of fact, Sam worked for the most famous of all suspension bridge designers, James A. L. Waddell of Kansas City (even in modern times Mr. Waddell is thought of as the Father of the Wonders of Engineering) and Waddell designed the Cisco bridge.

By 1901 the contract was set for Chimney Creek and the call for workers to build the 325 foot suspension bridge went out. It was to be a unique span with a lower counterweight to provide rigidity and overcome movement and ‘windlift’ common to suspension bridges. It was indeed, a handsome structure between graceful towers, an 80 foot Howe Truss on the east side and a 225 foot trestle approach to the west. Smith brought over 60 skilled workers in from across the country, including those who could feed and house them in the little village set up at the site.

waddellNow let’s put this project into perspective. The Provincial Government of the day led by Premier Edward Prior; was petitioned to build this bridge by a voting population of 40 white males, the total eligible voters of the Chilcotin. They insisted the bridge would bring prosperity to the entire heartland of the Province, and enable the production of cattle and sheep to feed the world.
The Premier was in fact, in the business of engineering and had a successful mining supply firm. With this background, how could he refuse them their bridge?

The site chosen was tenmiles down river from Chimney Creek, called “Sheep Creek” by the local ranchers. This was a good location for the bridge but extremely remote for the shipment of materials. Most of the supplies had to be unloaded at the Ashcroft railhead and hauled by wagon or sleigh many miles up the Cariboo Trail, then on through uncharted cattle tracts to the Fraser River. A young ranch hand named Henry Durrell, with more education than usual, took on the task of keeping the workers on

CTB 098A - Copy copy
Engineers Sam Smith and Henry Durrell

the site. Some who made the trek in, turned tail and left after seeing the difficult terrain at the crossing. Durrell made sure there was ample liquor and good food to reward the hard labour of those who remained.

Durrell acted as foreman to make continuous flow. He arranged drovers from as far away as Kamloops to join what looked like a convoy of 20 mule-team pack trains to haul the granite pier stones, weighing up to 450 pounds each, and the numbered prefabricated timbers to the site. It sometimes took two weeks to get to the bridge site and it was Henry that made sure they were placed without delay. But the story gets more interesting when the call goes out to supply the 700 foot, 2 ¾ inch suspension cables.

The good Premier Prior was also acting as the Minister of Lands and Works when the call to supply these cables went out to tender. When the bids came in, the Premier noticed that his Manager, of Prior & Co., had not bid. Perceiving a conflict-of-interest the Manager, in all honesty, could not bid; but the Premier did. As he had viewed the other bids, his bid was the lowest and his Company got the contract.

PRIORThe Legislature was livid and called for his head, but Premier Prior wouldn’t resign. Prior’s gentry was his downfall as he stated he was privileged as a Militia Colonel
and previous Lieutenant Governor of the Province. He could do no wrong. Out of the turmoil stepped Lieutenant Governor, Sir Henry Joly de Lotbiniere and fired Premier Prior. The Government of the Province fell.

The bridge opened in 1904, but as time went on, the Bridge became a pariah for the locals. It squeaked and squawked and swayed; it spooked man and beast that used it. As automobiles became popular, no one was fool enough to drive onto it when anything else was on it. But it remained a valued part of the route to Bella Coola until it was replaced by a new bridge and blown to bits in 1962.

Sources:
The Road Runs West, Diana French 1994 – Harbour
BC Biographical 1914
Bridge Engineering, Waddell 1923
Murchie Collection of Photographs

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