Sunday, January 15, 2017

Chilcotin Holidays

Guide's journey, part 4 of 4

Return to Tyax Camp – Riding through Winter Wonderland

After my last trip to Tyax Camp I had not expected to come back again soon. But I did and I again want to share my adventures with you.

Here we were, the same two guides as before, arriving in the early afternoon hours at camp. It is October and the scenery has changed accordingly. Everything has already turned into a white Winter Wonderland! They way to camp this time took us two days, as we were riding across/through half the South Chilcotin Mountain Park, only stopping at Spruce Lake to stay overnight. The last five hours have been a mix of more or less agreeable weather. Rain and snow took their turns with the result of a rather slippery trail, that would make me hold my breath at times, but the horses mastered it amazingly. As we ride into camp the snow is still happily dancing down. I ride around the cabin to make sure I get a good picture of the cabin and the yet undisturbed white blanket surrounding it. The only thing missing is the welcoming sight of smoke coming out of the chimney. Quickly we unpack our two pack horses and give everyone oats. After all, happy horses equals a reduced risk of unhappy horses deciding to go home by themselves. After staking the two pack horses, we head out again. It is a bit cold, but that does not stop me from enjoying every bit of the Winter Wonderland we are riding through. The pines and firs along the trail are carrying a considerable amount of snow, something I'm being reminded of every time we ride past a low hanging branch. Soon I too look like the rest of the scenery, covered by a layer of snow – a snow women in Winter Wonderland – with a smile I realize, I fit perfectly into the environment now!

By coincidence we are again following a strangers tracks in the snow. We first encountered the tracks after the first Tyaughton Creek crossing, th
ere the tracks were heading out on the trail we had come up on our last trip to Tyax Camp. As it turns out, that person came down the same trail we are riding up now – only a few hours before us. Seeing these tracks makes us strangely aware of our situation, we are all alone in the Park. This stranger was likely the last person to be in the park with us, and we sincerely hope he or she made it out safely. All alone, hours away from any help; two women and their four horses. Despite all the “what if's “ I am happy to be here. As we follow the trail the snow keeps falling. We soon decide to turn back, having fulfilled our purpose of finding and breaking in the trail, as well as testing the deepness of the snow. We also don't want to risk to come back too late, as even a Winter Wonderland can become a bit scary in the dark. At Tyax Camp we quickly stake our riding horses. Though ropes easily freeze over night, often making it difficult to untie them in the morning, staking is the best we can do for our four friends, as they stay warm while digging for grass in the snow and enjoy the plentiful green that is hidden there. We guides too, enjoy a cup of hot chocolate in our cozy little cabin before we roll out our sleeping bags for a good nights rest.

Chilcotin Holidays

About Chilcotin Holidays

We are a licensed guide outfitter and we conduct guided wilderness adventures throughout our 5,000 square km operating area. This guide area has been operational since 1880, making it the oldest in British Columbia. More about us HERE.

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