A reflection of the sun creates a glint in the eye of young Kiah Phillips as she takes part in Easter egg hunt activities at Blackpool Hall. This image originally appeared in the May 2, 2011, issue of the Times.

A reflection of the sun creates a glint in the eye of young Kiah Phillips as she takes part in Easter egg hunt activities at Blackpool Hall. This image originally appeared in the May 2, 2011, issue of the Times.

25 YEARS AGO: Third Canyon bridge gets another lane

Back in time: A snapshot of history


Transportation and Highways Minister Alex V. Fraser announced April 16 that a new and modern bridge will be built across the Thompson River at Clearwater, Old North Thompson Highway.

Tenders for a contract to build the structure, which will be located immediately downstream of the existing Bailey Bridge, will be opened May 6.

The contract will call for construction complete of a pre-stressed concrete stringer bridge, 105.25 metres long, consisting of three equal spans and a 9.15 metre double-lane roadway and two sidewalks. The structure will consist of abutments on spread footings founded on steel piles.

Included in the contract is the placing of bridge fills and rip-rap, protection work and the removal of the existing substructure of the original bridge.


Bob Cochlan has stepped down from the Clearwater Improvement District board after serving on it for 12 years. He announced his retirement at the CID’s annual general meeting at the district hall.

In a brief address to the board and public, Mr. Cochlan said he appreciated the enjoyment and satisfaction from the years he had served, but had been disappointed may times by the poor turnout at meetings (besides the board there were five members of the public at the meeting). This was echoed by other board members, and Bill Mattenly commented, “It’s a good thing we’re all honest.”

Art McKenzie, electrical supervisor at Weyerhaeuser and Clearwater resident for over seven years, was elected by acclamation to finish the last year in Mr. Cochlan’s term.


A group of Clearwater parents and businesses have banded together to erect a skateboard ramp at the corner of Scott and Raft near Raft River Trailer Park.

According to one of the parents, Gloria Unger, the ramp should be ready for use by the end of next week.

“We need some place for the kids,” said Mrs. Unger, one of the organizers. “There’s really no place for them.”

The facility will be open to all youngsters, she said, but they must follow the rules about helmets and so on.

If the ramp is not treated with respect, the organizer warned, it will be closed.


The Third Canyon bridge will become a two-laner over the summer and three bridges within Wells Gray Park will be rebuilt before winter.

“We’re going to totally rebuild the Third Canyon bridge,” confirmed Harvey Nelson, Ministry of Highways and Transportation Bridges and Ferries manager for the Thompson District. “The bridge will have a new alignment — it will be west of the existing bridge, on the Clearwater River side.”

The narrow Third Canyon bridge will also be upgraded to a two-lane bridge, Nelson promised.

In addition to the all new Third Canyon bridge, three more bridges within Wells Gray Park will also be rebuilt — the Alice Creek bridge at approximately 56 km on the Clearwater Valley Road, the Lone Spoon Creek bridge at 56.2 km and the Falls Creek bridge at 65 km, just before the lake.


New regulations give water suppliers greater control over their watersheds, and Clearwater Improvement District is making full use of them, says CID administrator Kim Heyman.

The improvement district has been involved in a series of roundtable discussions about Weyerhaeuser’s plans to log in the MacDougall Creek and Hascheak Creek watersheds, located behind Clearwater ski hill.

Representatives from the Ministries of Forests, Environment and Health, as well as the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans and attended the meetings as well.

“We;re looking at worst case scenarios, but I think it will be best case,” Heyman emphasized. “These guys are experts and I’m reassured by people outside the industry that they know what they are doing.”


Mark VanEngelen and Brandy Ballash lost their home due to a blocked chimney, but came out of the catastrophe with only minor smoke inhalation.

Ballash heard what she though was a scratching noise, and after investigating they realized their roof was on fire.

The young couple lost everything but a few items they were able to take out before the fire became too fierce.

The Blackpool fire department responded to the emergency call shortly after 1 a.m., making it to the fire in eight minutes.

The blaze caused a nearby mobile trailer to catch fire, completely destroying the interior, but there was no damage to the surrounding area.


District of Clearwater plans to purchase a safety boat for its new sewage lagoon.

It might sound funny but only until you consider the consequences of someone falling into the lagoon and being unable to get out.

The boat was just one highlight of the district’s five-year financial plan presented by director of finance Scott Coulson during a public information meeting.

The safety boat and its deployment method are projected to cost $10,000 and will be installed this year, Coulson said.

“We need to be able to get it into the lagoon without tearing the liner,” he said. “It’s going down a very slippery slope…and we want to make sure our guys aren’t going in, believe me.”


Enrolment at Clearwater Secondary and other North Thompson schools appears to be stabilizing, according to principal Darren Coates.

This is in line with a trend in School District 73 as well as across much of the province.

“The enrolment for this school year was projected to be 184, which turned out to be pretty close,” he said. “For next year it’s projected to be 174 but I think it will level out then.

“The number of Grade 12s leaving will be about the same as the number of Grade 7s coming in.”

Declining enrolment has been a problem for quite a few years, Coates said, pointing out that in 1999 there were 439 students attending CSS, more than twice the number as today.

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