Garrett Russ, 11, has his harness adjusted by instructor Kail Lifely, prior to the start of his first snowboard lesson. This image originally appeared in the Jan. 1, 2001, issue of the Times.

15 YEARS AGO: Bear Creek Correctional Centre property sold


At a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce television committee held Sunday evening, it was decided to abandon any attempt to install a satellite dish at this time.

Lack of public response is the biggest factor in this decision as after three months only $1700 has been donated with most if this amount received from members of the committee.

The committee feels there are still too many unknown factors involved with government regulations regarding satellite dishes. This committee is taking a wait-and-see-what-develops attitude.


The provincial government has made a donation of $9,000 towards the Clearwater midget hockey tour of Finland, Sweden and the Soviet Union currently underway. Announcement of the donation was made by local MLA and Tourism Minister Claude Richmond, featured speaker at the Midget hockey farewell dinner held Dec. 21 at the Wells Gray Hotel.

Mr. Richmond credited obtaining the grant to the constant pressure from local representatives, notably Reg Small and Bill Mattenley.

According to team manager Jim London, the provincial money will mean that Practically all of the $45,000 budgeted to take the team and essential staff on the tour will have been raised, with only very small sums still needing to be paid by the individual players.


Smaller local sawmills may be a possible bright spot in a general picture of layoffs and shutdowns in the forest industry.

Wadlegger’s sawmill in Clearwater was recently awarded a value-added sale by the Ministry of Forests, reported Hans Wadlegger, son of owner Joe Wadlegger. The three year deal should see their operation employ a number of new people.

“We are not planning any layoffs,” a spokesperson for Gilbert Smith Forest Products in Barriere stated. The mill is continuing to find markets for its cedar specialty products.

He said the license authorizes the harvesting of about 17,700 cubic metres of timber in the Kamloops forest district.


Ten full hours after a local snowmobiler mired his sled in deep snow on Raft Mountain, Darcy Viellette, 18, walked out of the bush at 15-1/2 km in Road 9 at 1:20 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 31, right into a group of anxious rescuers.

“Just by knowing the area quite well, we knew he had to come out there,” said fellow sledder Rocky Turcotte. “We had a fire built at 16 km.”

Viellete, who had been walking since around 3:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon, made voice contact with the group of snowmobilers on Road 9 at approximately 11 p.m.

“We knew he was on the way from that point. It took him 2-1/2 hours to get down,” said Turcotte, who estimated when voice contact was made Viellette was only about one kilometer away, but, “it’s pretty wicked territory.”


Logging on private land near Avola that damaged a fish habitat has cost a major land development company $15,000.

According to Byril Kurtz, habitat enforcement coordinator with the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans in Salmon Arm, the fine arose out of an investigation started in 1997 by staff from the Clearwater DFO office.

The staff had discovered that trees and other vegetation had been cleared along the North Thompson River and a couple of small tributary streams. The land clearing had been done on a 16-hectare piece of private property located at the north end of the bridge at Avola, along the east bank of the river.

The work was in three areas — each about 130 meters long by six or seven meters wide.


The British Columbia Building Corporation (BCBC) has sold its property located at the base of Trophy Mountain, formerly the Bear Creek Correctional Centre.

Rex Investiments Ltd., a company based out of Vancouver purchased the property for $510,000, well below the listed price.

The Bear Creek facility was one of eight minimum and medium security prisons closed when the BC Liberal government announced its cutbacks in 2001. The listing had seen no activity for two years at $859,000.

The BCBC recently re-listed with Colliers International Vancouver for $750,000.


Forests, Mines and Lands Minister Pat Bell said that 2010 is ending on a high note with several clear signs that a stronger, diverse B.C. forest sector is moving toward a healthy recovery.

“The B.C. forest sector was much busier this year and it appears that the worst of the economic downturn is now behind us,” said Bell. “The latest net earnings summary from PricewaterhouseCoopers reported all of B.C.’s largest forest companies showing profits in the third quarter. This is the first time in a decade that we have seen quarterly profits across the board.”

Heading into the new year, Asia Pacific’s steadily increasing demand for B.C. wood products conitnues to be the most encouraging indicator that the B.C. forest sector is poised to rebound for a more properous future.


Residential property owners in Clearwater can expect to see their property assessments change by +5 per cent to -5 per cent when they receive their assessment notices in the next few days.

“The majority of residential home owners within the area can expect a modest change in value, compared to last year’s assessment,” said deputy assessor Graham Held.

Overall, the Thompson area’s total assessments increased from $23.59 billion in 2015 to $24.14 billion this year. A total of almost $308 million of the Thompson area’s updated assessments is from new construction, subdivisions and rezoning of properties.

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