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Old 08-18-2010, 08:58 PM   #16
RiderJones OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregulator
I'm looking forward to the rest. I like the pictures, and you've done a good job laying them out and putting the story in between. You've sown some ideas of taking the bike up to BC in my head, now, too.
Thanks Gregulator! I like doing ride reports, it gives the trip a bit of a focus....I like having a 'mission'. It also slows a person down and makes you look around and see things differently. The next time I'd like to try and talk to more local characters along the way, and include pictures of them too....you just have to get used to going slower, and not rushing to get to the end destination I guess.
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Old 08-22-2010, 08:21 AM   #17
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Angelina shut out of the family? She could have come riding with us! Plenty of gourmet food to go around....



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Old 08-22-2010, 08:26 AM   #18
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We slabbed it from Lytton to Merritt, where we stocked up and headed for real ranch country, the Nicola Valley. My Dad and Uncle worked at the Guichon Ranch for many years, and we used to go back to visit there when I was a kid. I had cousins that worked down the road at the Douglas Lake Ranch too.




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Old 08-22-2010, 08:35 AM   #19
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This is the Quilchena Hotel, built by Joseph Guichon in 1908. My Dad says that they would ride there horses to the back door to get a drink of water, but they weren't usually allowed inside. It's a great old hotel, and a fun place to stay if you are traveling through here. We aren't staying, but I wanted to show Craig the inside. The surrounding area has been 'done up' a bit, with a golf course and some lakefront housing developments, but it still feels authentic.








Supposedly these are real bullet holes in the bar.....but who knows...

Its a great old bar anyway, and they could very well be bullet holes!


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Old 08-22-2010, 08:37 AM   #20
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Great photos of a fantastic ride.

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Old 08-22-2010, 08:54 AM   #21
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Here is the old Guichon Ranch 'Home Ranch', most of the buildings are behind the trees. Last time I was here with my Dad everything was pretty much as he remembered it from the 1950's. The bunkhouse where they slept, the harness makers shed, the horse barn, the root cellar. From his stories of the years he spent here, it was a great life for a young guy, lots of adventure, hard work, comraderie. Riding, roping, branding - all the old school cowboy stuff. I'll post a couple of old pictures from this era.





We rode towards the Douglas Lake Ranch, the largest working cattle ranch in Canada. The largest used to be the Gang Ranch, but I seem to remember that it changed hands a few times, and maybe was split up?
From our backroads of BC map book, we had chosen a route through the open range, heading for Penask Lake, which had a couple Forest Service campsites marked near it.



It's such great country here, big skies, rolling grasslands, no houses or people. Just birds and cows, and the grass waving in the wind. I still don't know why its such fun to ride on dirt roads, maybe it reminds me of growing up, and when my cousin Greg and I would ride along the dirt roads from our farms, sometimes venturing as far as the highway if we were feeling bold. We would look at the blacktop, watch the cars flash by, do a couple wobbly circles on the asphalt, then head back to the safety of the quiet country roads, maybe a bit freaked out by the grown-up world of highways.



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Old 08-22-2010, 10:51 AM   #22
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Wow just seen a lot of familiar places, just came back from a trip from merrit - lytton- to lillooet via the ferry - Towards Goldbridge cross the mission mountain dam and into seton portage, - D'arcy - Pemberton duffey lake road into lillooet again and to lytton on the normal side and then back home. It was a great trip my favorites were the from lillooet to D'arcy and the duffey lake road. awesome scenery.
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Old 08-22-2010, 02:35 PM   #23
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Strangely Familiar

Quote:
Originally Posted by RiderJones
Here is the old Guichon Ranch 'Home Ranch', most of the buildings are behind the trees. Last time I was here with my Dad everything was pretty much as he remembered it from the 1950's. The bunkhouse where they slept, the harness makers shed, the horse barn, the root cellar. From his stories of the years he spent here, it was a great life for a young guy, lots of adventure, hard work, comraderie. Riding, roping, branding - all the old school cowboy stuff. I'll post a couple of old pictures from this era.
This section of your ride looks so much like eastern Oregon, where I grew up, it's giving me goosebumps. I haven't been back there in 2 years, and haven't spent more than a day or two there in a decade. Every time I visit, most of it looks just like it did 20 years ago, right down to the trucks parked in front of paint-chipped barns.

Keep the pictures coming!
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Old 08-23-2010, 12:35 PM   #24
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[quote=RiderJones]This is the Quilchena Hotel, built by Joseph Guichon in 1908. My Dad says that they would ride there horses to the back door to get a drink of water, but they weren't usually allowed inside. It's a great old hotel, and a fun place to stay if you are traveling through here. We aren't staying, but I wanted to show Craig the inside. The surrounding area has been 'done up' a bit, with a golf course and some lakefront housing developments, but it still feels authentic.





Ahh the old Quilchena Hotel:) Yes our dads have many good stories of their "cowpunchin" days in this country. My brother Ken also worked for Gerrard Guichon as well for a few summers as did Charlotte his wife, whom he met here while she worked in the hotel. Did you run into Guy Rose, the owner? If so you could have easily wrangled a free stay at the "Flying W" guest ranch just a few miles back from the hotel that he uses to entertain his rich guests. My Dad and I stayed there when I was about 15. I stayed in one of the bunkhouses (with his daughter Annie and her cute little rehead friend next door) while all the grownups were in the main ranch house partying until the wee hours. More great photos couzin!
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Old 08-24-2010, 07:37 PM   #25
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My Dad and My Uncle sometime in the 1950's working at the Guichon Ranch...tryin' to look cool.






This is what I was thinking about as we rode our bikes through the open range.....



Apparently Dad spent two whole summers living in this cabin with this old coot. They remained friends for years, the old guy died on the ranch, a lifelong employee, and apparently loved every minute. I wanted to try and find this cabin, too see if its still standing, but need to go over a map with my dad first, to figure out where the hell it is.



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Old 08-24-2010, 07:49 PM   #26
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Doesn't this piece of road just sum it all up? It's so much fun to ride these dirt roads with no other vehicles around, no houses, no people...sweet! I could pitch a tent right here and just ride back and forth on this stretch of road for a few days.




OK. There WAS a traffic jam at one point.








This was our turn off, nicely sign posted. We stopped and had lunch here.















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Old 08-24-2010, 08:09 PM   #27
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So after lunch, we wound our way towards Penask Lake, kind of assuming it would be an easy afternoon, probably arrive early and go for a swim, make some food, have a beer or two. It was hot and dusty, so that idea really sounded appealing.
The nice swoopy range roads turned into not so nice logging roads that didn't seem to jive with either our GPS maps, or the Backroads Mapbook. We overshot, we backtracked we turned around, we re-traced.



We ended up somewhere on the north side of Penask Lake, the shadows getting longer, and us getting hungrier. Kind of sucked, but we kept slogging. And hey, we were riding motorcycles! How could that not be fun?




hey, bear tracks...cool.



There was a sign telling us we were in the general vicinity of Penask Lake, but offered no hints as to how we actually might find it. We still hadn't actually seen even a glimpse of the lake, just jackpines and logging roads of varying crappyness. Looks like someone else rated the less then helpful government attempt at directional signage as a three blast effort.





Craig gave this gate and sign the full ADV salute.


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Old 08-24-2010, 08:33 PM   #28
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We eventually found our way out of the maze, something about a road to Marsh Lake, which didn't seem to be on either of our maps...anyway, we bounced along some more logging roads, finally got dumped out on a more main forest service road heading towards Hatheume Lake. There were FS campsites listed there, so that's where we headed, with light fading fast.





Looks like the same sign critic gave this one a FAIL as well....




Finally. Home for the night!



This whole trip, all of BC was under a campfire ban, which took some of the fun out of camping. This was still a great site though.




Lots of Loons on this lake, and saw some massive trout jumping! Seriously, they sounded like seals flopping around out there. We are definitely bringing fishing gear the next time round. The coyotes yipped and howled all night, competing with the loons. Great sleep.




Sunrise through Craigs tent......




Beautiful morning....time to get packed up.




But need coffee first!




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Old 08-24-2010, 09:52 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curbjumper
Great photos of a fantastic ride.

Thanks! Much appreciated.
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Old 08-25-2010, 08:40 AM   #30
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We rode for what seemed like a long way this morning, past a few little lakes, lots of cut blocks, saw a cow moose and calf. We were headed towards Lake Okanagan, aiming to come out on the westside road across from Kelowna.





The road had recently been graded, which made picking a lane a bit of a head scratcher. The little ungraded band down the center varied in width, and got pretty narrow at times....






Came across the grader, who stopped and turned off his machine.




He was really chatty, wanted to know where we had come from, where we were going and was particularly interested in which logging roads we had taken. He said it would be difficult seeing any signage coming from Douglas Lake, as the those roads were made to be travelled from the Kelowna end. I wonder if logging companies don't put up any real signage to discourage people from using these roads? Grader operator must be a a bit boring at times, he seemed glad to have someone to talk to.




We cruised along towards Okanagan Lake, the roads got wider, flatter, dustier. We started to see logging trucks, one after another, filling the warm air with chalky dust. We were descending, losing elevation, the air getting hotter as we dropped....finally coming out across the lake from Kelowna. You can see the floating bridge that crosses from Kelowna to Westbank in the distance.

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