Tuesday was wonderfully clear and sunny – of course, it was also the day we had to leave! We did the touristy thing and drove up to the top of Mount Revelstoke, with amazing views both along the way and from the top.
Can you believe how cute the little fire tower is?
Unlike in many other places, the main reason for forest fires around here is from lightning strikes (and not people), so the tower was kept in operation into the late ’80s, when planes and satellite tracking took over. Still 7-8 lightning strikes per km^2 per year seems like a lot – good luck keeping it under control, Revelstoke!
We also saw the peak Dan had planned the original scramble for.
The drive back to Kamloops was very sunny and pleasant, with stops for ice cream, wine,
and a salmon run. Have you ever been?
No? Well, let me tell you – it’s exceptional! BC is having the largest salmon run in 100 years, and the viewing platforms were bus-ay. Lucky for us, we got there towards the end of the day and on a Tuesday – I can only imagine what it was like on the weekend before! What you see is pretty incredible – salmon upon salmon, in places packed almost as close as in a can.
This is the area where they come to nest, depositing the eggs and then promptly dying. To do this, they travel up shallow and fast-moving mountain rivers, hugging the shores en masse, and then making a break for it when they’ve rested enough for the next leg.
Why are the parks officials not worried about poachers, or people trying to pluck salmon out of the water, since they’re so easily accessible? Well, once they start their run up the river, the salmon stop eating, all their energy going to the production of sperm and eggs. Their bodies are actually decaying as they travel upstream, and so they die as soon as they’ve done the deed. All together now – ewwwwww.
At this point, they are inedible, and possibly poisonous. Which is why on the drive back we stopped at a little stall selling delicious smoked salmon made from fish caught very early on in the Fraser, before all this happens. Oh, the things you learn on vacation.
We’re both looking forward to visiting BC again, and hopefully not getting quite as shafted on the weather. Now, anybody want to step up to the challenge and set a wedding date?