Editorial: The turning of the seasons

Trent Ernst, Editor


On Sunday, for the first time in what seems like forever, a group of friends gathered at the Cooper’s house.

Change that. On Sunday, a group of friends gathered in the Cooper’s backyard. That’s an important distinction, as it was the first fire of the season.

Yes, after what seems like forever, the “longest, coldest winter in recent memory”, the seasons is finally changing.

According to the people who keep track of these things, this winter was pretty intense. Winnipeg experienced the second coldest winter in 75 years, while Vancouver, famed for it’s mild winter, experienced one of its coldest and snowiest February in 25 years.

In Tumbler Ridge, while we dodged the whole polar vortex of December and January, got nailed in February and March, making the winter seem so much colder and longer than normal.

And, while April is the most fickle of months, it looks like (crosses fingers and toes) that we’re through the worst of it.

Which brings us to spring, and summer, and the most wonderful time of the year (sorry, Andy Williams) here in Tumbler.

Every year, I promise myself in April (or March, or May), that this year is the year that I do summer to its fullest. That I crack the bones and suck the marrow from this season. And yet, every year, my list of things I want to do in summer seems to get longer, not shorter.

Which, I suppose, is not a bad thing. The day you accomplish everything you want to achieve is the day you stop living, but there’s a number of things that have been hanging around on that list for far too long.

Many of those goals revolve around the outdoors, and Tumbler Ridge is the perfect place to dream outdoor dreams. Last year, I picked up the local trail passport, and have started re-visiting many of the trails that I have hiked (some I have even helped build) with my kids.

This year’s big goal: to hike into Berg Lake at the base of Mount Robson in the Provincial Park of the same name with my eldest daughter.

I’ve been dreaming about Berg Lake ever since my then freshly-minted wife and I visited Mount Robson way back when.

At the time, I was still going to school, and working for the student newspaper. I was still driving my first-ever car, a mid-80s Ford Mustang with a straight six, a leaky sunroof and an electrical system designed by a ten-year-old

I remember getting to the park at sundown. The sky was clear, and when we rounded that corner where you first see Robson, the mountain towered ahead of us in all its glory. It was magnificent. At which point in time, my headlights decided to conk out, and I had to spend the next ten minutes trying to get them to stay on.

Colette and I went for a day hike up as far as the Valley of a Thousand Falls, which is about 5 km shy of Berg Lake.

As we hiked, I became aware that many, if not most of the people who were hiking the trail were families. Dads and sons. Moms and daughters. Groups of them, or just pairs. And it made me a little sad. My father was Saskatchewan born and raised, and was not a big fan of either walking or the mountains.

At the time, I decided that, were I ever cursed with kids (at the time I had a slightly different attitude towards kids than I do now), that I wanted to make this trip with them.

It’s nearly twenty years later, but I still carry that dream with me, so this summer, the plan is to train with my eldest so that we are able to make this trip sometime towards the end of summer.

What’s you’re goal for this summer? Camping? Hiking? Fishing? Let us know at editor@tumblerridgenews.com