Hank Shelley

Column: A look at the outdoor scene in the Shuswap

Despite happenings and events taking place around the world, and even in our own province, we tend to be a happy lot and are very fortunate, even thankful to live where we do.

Although we are seeing subtle changes taking place, like climate change, drying conditions, we are going to have to adapt at some point to be resilient in our lifestyles.

A recent weekend saw the Salmon Arm Fish and Game Club 3D-archery event with RV’s motorhomes rolling in on Friday evening, filling the parking-trap grounds areas. Dedicated archers walked the many trails and range, followed up by a pig roast Saturday evening. Despite clouds of dust rolling up on the 110 Forestry Road, many mountain bikers in small groups rode the trails and jumps in surrounding terrain, mixed in with the wood cutters getting winter wood supply. If you want to get in shape, go biking.

Most I talked to, were young, energetic, slim and trim. Even the older guys!

From a vantage point, looking down on beautiful Shuswap, Sunnybrae and Canoe, there were only three boats out, indicating fewer folks from out of province are in the area, enjoying the lake. Word about flooding and high gas prices has put the kibosh possibly on travelling.

Wildfire: Whether it’s the new generation of younger folks enjoying the outdoors, and not taking precautions about camp fires, and properly putting them out, or are these fires being set?

The Tommy Lake-Allie lake fires near Kamloops, and the fire near Pemberton are suspicious in nature. During the 2017 fire season, few persons were charged or caught. However, many will agree, they should be put on the fire line, to sweat it out like we see the regulars do!

The bush is very dry, and with the trained eye, one can see the trees on the mountainsides that are already changing colour due to lack of moisture. The average fir tree will absorb up to 350 litres of water a day and store large amounts of carbon in its root system. The flood situation has subsided, thank goodness, as there was some tense days for many folks.

Shuswap Lake is still high and turbid from all the run off. For the avid angler, a person will have to go to brighter lures, fish deeper, and locate trout or char on the finder and work that location. White Lake is turning over, slowing fishing down, while other lakes like Baird-Hidden (Enderby), Skimikin, Pillar (Falkland) may have been winter killed.

Motoring: Another bad accident at the crossing at 10th Ave. SE saw a Dodge ram pinned to the steel sign post with a Ford Explorer catching fire. There are two pedestrian signs and a slow sign as one approaches travelling north. Please slow down at the location. A flashing amber is needed overhead.

Be safe.

Enjoy our Great Outdoors!

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