Pritchard is a small community on Hwy 1 heading east from Kamloops. Walter Percy Pritchard bought 160 acres in 1907 then built Hotel Pritchard and a post office. The location needed a name so he gave his own and it has been known as Pritchard ever since. The one lane bridge was built shortly after and is still in use.
We crossed the Pritchard Bridge over the South Thompson
River and followed the Kamloops-Shuswap Road east. There are several ranches along this road and
cattle can be seen scattered about the fields.
This turned out to be rest time for the herd.
The South Thompson is getting quite high at this time of year after the Spring thaw and rainy season so we are seeing a very wide river and hoping for no floods. The railway is a big part of Kamloops history so rarely will we be out for a drive without seeing a train or two.
A friend had said there were lots of flowers to be seen on
this drive so we wanted to make sure we got out there before they died. Sure enough, we came upon fields of lupine
just off the road. Here grows plenty of
edible lupine, edible part is news to me, pretty but not too appetizing looking. I see no cattle eating it, either.
There is one big rain cloud ahead. Not being sure we will be driving into that or not,
we carry on. Taking photos out a rainy
window isn’t easy. If only the sun was
shining, we’d be seeing beautiful sights out here but at least everything does look so
green and clean today.
The Balsamroot flower of the sunflower family covers many hills in our area in the
springtime. It also is edible but
apparently rather bitter so I’m not going to try this one, either. Wildlife and cattle can eat it but haven’t
seen that yet, either.
We drove through the rain shower in short time and passed
through the green hills of what was originally known as Neskonlith Douglas
Reserve as we approached Chase, BC. This
was named for Chief Neskonlith after the Indian Reserve System was established
in the 1860’s. Now known as home to the Neskonlith Band.
The South Thompson River begins its’ travels from this
point at the west end of Little Shuswap Lake.
The Lake does not show the same signs as the Chase Creek, which picks up
dirt as it rises along the way during this season and brings it into the South
Thompson where it joins up. The season
hasn’t peaked yet but once it does, the water will return to a nicer color that
we can once again enjoy for swimming and fishing.
Kamloops area has always been a good location for vineyards. Several have begun over the past few years and have developed a lot of attention due to the quality. At one time the valley was full of orchards and beer hops but wine is now the main crop.
|Fields of Lupine|
|Chase Creek meets South Thompson River|
|Pine Street Bridge|
We will cross the Pine Street Bridge and enter Chase, a small tourist attraction town on the Shuswap Lake. Chase was named after an American Whitfield Chase who originally moved here for the gold rush in 1855. He married and settled here in 1865 and farmed the area. The town was named in his honor in 1902 long after he’d passed away.
So that’s our drive for today. Hopefully the next drive we take you on will be without rain but no matter the weather, we shall appreciate all that surrounds Kamloops, there is just no place like home.