Back in Time

  • Aug. 9, 2018 12:30 p.m.


Clearwater Improvement District chairman Jack Foote was “irate” over a recent spate of fires at the Clearwater garbage dump. Trustees agreed someone was deliberately setting the fires, and noted that anyone caught would be prosecuted.

Wells Gray Baseball Club took part in a 15-team tournament in Lillooet and came home with third place and $100 in prize money.

Tenders were called for supply of material and construction of a new bridge over the Clearwater River on the North Thompson Highway. The contract consisted of the supply, fabrication, delivery, and erection of 293 tons of structural steelwork.


A 19-year-old from Vancouver, Wilfredo Lopez Ching, was killed in a vehicle accident half a mile south of Vavenby. It was believed he drove off the road and over an 80-foot embankment.

New hunting regulations introduced by the Ministry of Recreation and Conservation meant hunters now had to submit the lower jaw of all caribou taken in the province for inspection at a designated inspection centre. Several areas of caribou hunting grounds were also closed due to drastic population declines.

The B.C. Forest Service reported 50 new forest fires in the previous week, two of which were uncontrollable as of press-time.

Blue River Summer Fest ’78 was slated to kick off the next weekend, featuring horseshoe throwing, a dart tournament, a beer drinking contest, nail driving, and many more activities to keep residents and visitors active.


No plans were made to hold the Lions’ Club annual Dutch Lake Regatta this year. According to one member of the Clearwater North Thompson Lions, “No one wants to swim in the lake,” which can cause “swimmers itch.”

Tina Colborne and Andrea Foulkes opened a chapter of the Society For the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in Clearwater. They were to provide housing, veterinary attention, and an attempt to locate homes for pets turned into them.

Police intensified their search for the bodies of three men believed to have drowned after their boat went over Osprey Falls near Clearwater Lake.


Police investigated a hit and run that occurred in the Safety Mart parking lot. The complainant’s 1979 black Toyota 4-door sedan was hit on the left rear door, incurring approximately $200 in damage.

Mother-daughter team Gloria Nicholas and Heather Downey announced the upcoming opening of their new store, “Creative Casual and Work Wear” in the old hydro building in Clearwater.

The Times announced the beginning of a new contest for readers. Throughout the newspaper, hidden in the text of the news were to be the words (Raft) (River) (Mini) (Market). The first person to bring their newspaper in to the Raft River Mini Market each week with all four words circled would receive a one-night’s rental movie for free.


Police said alcohol was a factor in a single-vehicle accident that sent a 21-year-old male to hospital with suspected head and spinal injuries. The victim was able to climb out of the van, which came to rest on its side in the ditch on Candle Creek Road. Police reported that witnesses said other vehicles passed the injured man lying on the road without stopping to offer assistance.

The remains of a male murder victim discovered in the Barriere area were positively identified but police were waiting until the victim’s family had been located and notified before releasing his name.

An Alberta resident, Forrest Love, visiting Clearwater to attend his son’s marriage, died after falling into a campfire in the early morning hours on the day of the planned wedding. There was no indication why he fell, but alcohol may have been a factor as the family was visiting and they “had had some drinks.” The wedding, scheduled for later that day, was called off.


Improvements to the access road to Trophy Mountain meadows as part of a joint B.C. Parks and Ministry of Forests project lowered the steep grade of the road and replaced the old culverts with large, crushed rocks, which were expected to eliminate previous problems with plugging.

High temperatures and strong winds led to a number of small fires springing up near Clearwater. Road closures were imposed on Elevator Road, Berry Creek Road, Avola Mountain Road, Martin Creek Road, MacLennan Mountain Road, and Raft/Martin Road.


BC hydro urged patience as they restored power to Valley residents after fire destroyed an estimated 20 km of power lines and 100 power poles near McLure.

Barriere’s regional district director Bill Kershaw praised the Barriere fire department for its efforts in saving the town from destruction from a wall of flames that had roared through Tolko-Louis Creek.


Clearwater Mayor John Harwood told the Times that he and council were pursuing the possibility of having a designated part of Wells Gray Park classified as a United Nations Educational, Social and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Geological Park, or a World Heritage Site.

A Vavenby couple was looking to bring a Metis museum to Clearwater. “We want to share our culture and our history with anybody who is interested,” said Mrs. Dale Haggerty.

Kayakers from around the world took part in the Clearwater Kayak Fest, held in memory of Ben Earle. Overall, the Fest raised between $800 and $900 for Earle’s two children.


Some of Canada’s most outstanding thinkers and writers had been invited to the upcoming Speak to the Wild – a Wells Gray World Heritage Year event. “It will be a four-day event with an internationally renowned set of authors,” TRU dean of science Tom Dickinson told Clearwater Rotary Club.

More than a dozen Clearwater and area youngsters took part in the EUReKA! Science Camp put on annually by TRU.

About 150 people, many of them former residents from out of town, attended a barbeque held as part of a Blue River reunion held during the August long weekend. The event was hosted by TNRD Area B (Thompson Headwaters) services committee and director Willow MacDonald.


BC Parks announced the partial closure of Wells Gray Park due to the return of hot and dry weather. Most of the major day-use sites along the highway corridor were still accessible, but the backcountry was closed to everyone except those with organized groups. Some recreation sites and trails outside the park were also closed.

Wells Gray Search and Rescue extricated a well-known local resident after he dislocated his kneecap on the Triple Decker Falls trail north of Clearwater. Tom Meland was the former manager of Clearwater Bible Camp and has worked part-time with local ambulance crews. “Praise to God I had my cellphone with me,” he said.

The province banned the use of off-road vehicles for recreational use from Crown land across pretty well the whole southern Interior. Reason for the ban was to prevent wildfires.

Multiple news media reported that swimmer Sydney Pickrem from Clearwater, B.C. had won bronze in the world championships in Budapest. Only problem was she was from Clearwater, Florida and had dual Canadian/U.S. citizenship.

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