We woke up this morning (Wednesday) to snow on the ground and it was still snowing/raining. It was about 35 degrees so it wasn't going to last and the rain was doing a trick on it as well. We drove on up from Lac La Hache to Quesnel in about two hours. It didn't snow on us this time but the rain continued for about the first hour. It was more of the same scenery we had yesterday. This area reminds me a lot of Minnesota with all of the dense forests and many lakes. There are a lot more cattle ranches here though.
After we got here, we quickly set up camp and were on our way to Barkerville, BC. It is an old mining town from the British Columbia gold rush days that has been refurbished and turned into a "Heritage Site." The original gold rush was in 1862 and a second one occurred in the 1930s. It has over 125 heritage buildings occupying a strip almost a mile long. They have shows, demonstrations, stage coach rides, etc. but all we did was look as some of the displays and attend a placer gold mining demonstration.
Did I mention that it was cold? Barkerville is at 4,300 feet elevation, about 2,500 feet higher than where our campground is. It was cool when we left Quesnel but we had no idea what we were about to get into. It is about 50 miles from Quesnel to Barkerville and as we started we could see the snow covered mountains in the distance and wondered if we had dressed appropriately only to discover as we got closer and closer that we definitely had not! As we got higher and higher, there was more and more snow around us. We passed frozen lakes and even a not so frozen black bear along the side the road.
We finally arrived in Barkerville to find the parking lot had to have been cleared of snow so that people could park. The town had just opened on May 11 and the attendant told us that they had received 29 feet of snow this year and it took 485 dump trucks to haul off enough of the snow so they could open up this year. It was cold (about 35 degrees) but was an enjoyable trip, especially since we got to see three more black bears on the way back down.
We are just staying in the campground Thursday and doing a few little things around the mothership. Friday we head for Vanderhoof instead of Prince George. Our unplanned stop here in Quesnel allowed us to go a little further and go past Prince George as we will be back there on the way down. We get on the ferry one week from today!