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Aerial View of Big Dog Mtn from the North # 3848

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Date: 2002
Vantage Point: From above the upper Yalakom River basin

Caption: Aerial View of Big Dog Mtn Photo by Kat

PhotoDescr: This view of Big Dog Mountain is looking slightly west of due south from above the upper Yalakom River, just south of Poison Mountain; the precise vantage point is probably above one of the ridges of the Camelsfoot Range. Even though this is the first aerial I've seen of this view, the angle is familiar to me from vintage photos I've seen of Big Dog over the years, evidently taken from high up on the Camelsfoot as the shape of the mountain is immediately recognizable. Interestingly, one of the older photos I'm speaking of has the same backlit-sparkle effect seen here, although that older photo had much more snow showing - but those were different times, climatically as in so many other ways. When we drove up the Yalakom and over Buck Mountain down to Mud Lakes in that road trip I've spoken of in other photo essays, the view of Big Dog was late afternoon and it was only lightly dusted with snow, with the meadow-like nature of the surrounding basins and barrens very appealing; in retrospect I wish I'd directed the guys to drive up there instead of continuing up to Poison Mountain; for one thing, we wouldn't have gotten stuck at the bottom of the Churn Creek Hill and for another we would have been treated to some damn fine views of the surrounding country. And they might have even gotten the deer they were looking for!

I'm uncertain as to how Big Dog got its name; I don't think the reference is to wolves but perhaps to horses; or it might just be that one of the hunting guides had a big dog that died up here or something of that kind; the neighbouring Big Sheep Mountain's name-origin is more obvious, of course.

The history of the Blue Creek gold rush and mine prospect (known as the Yalakom Strike) which took place in the vicinity of Big Dog in 1941 will be explored in a later photo essay.

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