The Perilous Voyage to Anderson and Seton Lake

Oh please don’t let us go over the edge! My eyes are shut tight. My husband just smirks, shakes his head and for the “efteenth time” and reassures me we are going to be ok.

We are going to Seton Lake Portage. To get there, you have to got from Lillooet to Seton Lake Portage via a few back dirt roads that traverse drop offs, narrow spots, steep inclines, steep grades and switch backs. Oh, did I mention we are towing a 16 foot power boat. If that thing slips off the edge…

Ok. I need to get a grip. The trip to Seton Lake Portage went well actually. We were never really in any danger. Were we?  Hell if I know with my eyes closed so damn much. From the glimpses I did take, the scenery was breath taking.

I’m not a complete wimp…I did have my eyes open the majority of the trip. I’m being dramatic.  It is a freaky thing to know that you could plummet to your death multiple times on a voyage.

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This is Anderson Lake. Anderson Lake and Seton Lake used to be one Lake until about 10, 000 years ago when the flank of the Cayoosh Range, which is the south flank of the valley, let go and slid into the middle of the single lake. Seton Lake however, is the size it is now due to the Hydro Dam on one side near Lillooet.
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Look down…wayyyy down
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A pit stop along the way to explore an old homestead. A few feet away from behind the house was another drop off, 200 feet straight down to the river below. 
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A hole in the side of a mountain. We must go through it to get to the other side. PS: There wasn’t any supporting structures inside that tunnel. Just Rock. Ok, Ok…it was only 50-60 feet long…I think. It’s solid. Rock Solid. 

After going through the tunnel, narrow dirt roads and switch backs we finally made it down to the bottom of the valley.  To get to Seton Portage, you have to go through a BC Hydro station. I wish I got picture of that. By the time I got my camera up, I did manage to take a picture of some Seton Lake First Nations Paintings on the support beams holding up the Hydro Electric Spillway Conduits for the turbine generators.  Now these paintings, I imagine, have a story.  I wonder what it is? I’m sure somewhere in the community, it explains the pictures on these concrete pillars. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the time to find out.

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I wonder: Who did these? How old were they? What do they mean?  There is a Story here.

We arrive in Seton Lake Portage. It’s small and quaint. If you blink an eye, you’ll miss it. If the BC Hydro Dam didn’t exist here, I wonder what would become of this small community? It is mainly comprised of First Nations people. There is a brand new Hotel ran by the First Nations Community. This is where we stayed. Lovely…but the price… Ah, it was worth it.  Somewhere along the road there was a series of RV’s and motor homes lined up. We were told they were for the workers manning the Hydro Dam as there are not enough buildings to accommodate the workers.

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The Lovely Hotel and our trusted steed and wagon.

So now that we are here, WE EXPLORE THE LAKE! Anderson Lake. It is a 22 km long lake and


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The kids have front row seats.
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Erosion build up.
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This was a cool sight. This Plane graced up with its presence. It flew super low and gave us all a good look. The kids were super thrilled! It sounded amazing and loud in the valley.
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A pit stop half way down the lake on a beautiful beach.
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This was here already on the beach. Very inviting.
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The kids exploring the cold creek running into the lake.
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My son trying avoid the cool, crisp water. My daughter braving it.
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Pure joy.
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One place we won’t forget.      What’s interesting is that if you take a look on the left hand side of the picture, there is a train track that runs along that side of the lake. Story goes that before the train track was put in, First Nations people would catch thousands of Kokanee fish to feed their village. There was such an abundance of Kokanee, the waters teemed with them. When the train tracks were put in, thousands of pounds of limestone was brought in to make a base for the tracks. Lots of limestone, debris, and sediment entered the water and settled along the shoreline, covering vital Kokanee spawning grounds.  The Kokanee Fishery almost collapsed and has never recovered. Sad Story.
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Spawning Salmon.  As we approached the other end of the lake near the community of D’arcy, we were greeted with Spawning Salmon.  There were a few pools of fish that were roiling and boiling the water, frothing it up. What a treat to see!  Also, to have the Salmon tell their Story about making their way up the Fraser River and along the tributaries to get to their final destination would be, I’m sure, be a story of adventure and hardship.
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It’s the end of the story for this Salmon.

Well folks, that is the end of my Story here. It was a fantastic and educational trip with so many wonderful, interesting and inspirational sights.

We will go back again and see more of these worlds, where the old met the new, and perhaps next time, I will keep my eyes open for the whole thing.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Story