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Smokey Moon over Winstone # 5405

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Date: 2004.07.26
Vantage Point: From Falls River Valley

Caption: Taken at about 10 p. m. as the smoke from the Lonesome Lake fire drifted south over the Chilcotin Plateau and into the Falls River Valley. Passport Couloir at left with the National Pillar to its right. Our camp was at the base of the photo in the forest -- you can make out Andrew Rennie's red jacket.

PhotoDescr: A fantastic seven-day trip to the Falls River/Tchaikazan area. On our last day in the area massive amounts of smoke drifted up valley and obscured every peak in a blue haze. We figured the fire must be coming from the immediate area, likely Chilko Lake, and were amazed to learn upon our exit to Williams Lake that the smoke had filled the enitre Chilcotin plateau from its origins in Tweedsmuir Park.

The story of the Edwards family has been briefly described in the news reports of the devastation of the family homestead, but you don't get a full grasp of the sheer history until you read Leland Stowe's Crusoe of Lonesome Lake. When I first read this book some 10 years ago -- before I had even a fraction of the geography of BC roughed out in my head -- I filed the book under "big fish story, likely myth" in my brain, and it was not until I arrived home from this trip to the headlines of infernos that the book really came to life for me as reality.

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