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Aerial Panorama of the Four Sisters (Cheam Range) # 3816

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Date: 2002
Vantage Point: From above Seabird Island

Caption: The Four Sisters (Cheam Range) and Mts. Slesse & Shuksan & The Canadian Border Peaks

PhotoDescr: This panorama just begs for labelling but I won't dare get at it right now without consultation; other than the main peaks of the Cheam Range the others I can pick out are Slesse, Shuksan and the Canadian Border Peaks; in the original there was a shoulder of Baker showing but I needed to keep things down pixel-wise; as it is you'll still have to scroll to the right to see the Border Peaks.

This is one set of peaks I'm almost as intimate with as those of the Bridge River Country, even though I've never seen them from this angle before. Dad was the construction boss, and then production superintendent, for the Wahleach Powerhouse and the dam on Jones Lake, so were were up at the lake a lot, not quite as much as at the powerhouse and the nearby spawning channel, but every time we drove up-valley Dad would have to point out Cheam; and of course the Four Sisters are highly visible from Mission, where I went to high school. The name "Cheam Range" is relatively new in terms of most-common usage; we always knew them as the Four Sisters, a name which does relate to the many native legends attached to these peaks somehow but I've forgotten the details for now. Of course this really only applies fittingly to the four visible from the Fraser Valley - Cheam, Lady, Baby Munday and....Foley or Welch? And yeah, Lady Peak really does look like a dog's head - a Dalmatian's, specifically!

I remember Cheam when it still had a point on it, by the way; I think it was the summer of '70 or so - an incredibly hot summer that stripped all the peaks of snow. Until whatever that year was, Cheam had a distinct and very sharp point on it; that summer it melted off and the peak was bare-bones rock; it looks "dulled" ever since.....

I've got other pictures from Jones Lake which have a story that goes with them, which I'll get to later. Suffice to say that Dad had a "thing" about Jones Lake, and aside from his love of mountains I think it was as close as he could get to where his favourite brother Harry died - on the slopes of Mt. Slesse in the infamous air crash of December 9, 1956. If you happen to be at the Slesse Memorial just off the Chilliwack River Road you'll see on the bronze plaque listing the casualties the name Harald J. Cleven, along with 61 others.....

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