We left Chetwynd for Fort St. John, taking the scenic route (Highway 29) along the Peace River Valley.
There are major roadworks along this route once past Hudson’s Hope. We thought that they were just upgrading this section of the highway by twining it. As we climbed out of the valley, we came across a lookout where we pulled off to take in the views.
As we took in the views a couple from Fort St. John on a motorcycle pulled in to the Lookout. As we conversed, they enlightened us that this was not just road improvements, the road was being rerouted as this valley and the associated farm land had been expropriated by the government of BC and is to be flooded as part of the ‘Site C” dam project.
The Site C Dam is an under construction on the Hydroelectric Dam on the Peace River, 14 kilometres southwest of Fort St. John in north-eastern British Columbia. It is located approximately 80 kilometres downstream from the W. A. C. Bennett Dam. When completed in 2025, the Site C Dam will become the 4th largest producer of hydroelectricity in BC with an expected capacity of 1,100 MW and an expected annual output of 5,100 GWh of electricity.
The project has drawn considerable opposition from several quarters due to its planned flooding of agricultural land, damage to the local environment, high construction cost, possible alternatives, and the uncertainty of future electricity prices and demand in the province. Two Treaty 8 First Nations, and local landowners have made legal challenges to the dam, though these were dismissed by the Court of Appeal. In addition, over 200 scholars, as well as the Royal Society of Canada, have expressed concerns to the Federal Liberal Government, citing weakness in the regulatory review process and the environmental assessment for the project. In May 2016 the federal government stated it is “not revisiting projects that have been reviewed and approved”. On 11 December 2017, John Horgan, the Premier of British Columbia, announced: “We’ve come to a conclusion that, although Site C is not the project we would have favoured or would have started, it must be completed, thus guaranteeing the completion of the project. (Wikipedia)
The first photo is looking east towards where the dam is being built.
From here we proceeded on towards Fort St. John. We stopped just west of the town, at Charlie Lake, there were a couple of campgrounds to choose from. We picked the Rotary RV Park, we would stay be staying here a couple of days. From here we could hike along the lakeside.
While out hiking we came across a memorial for some US Corp of Engineers who lost their lives when the barge they were travelling on sank.
After our time here we continued on to Ft. St. John before heading back to Grimshaw, Alberta.
While in Grimshaw we stocked up on groceries before heading back to Strong Creek for three or four days. Again we experienced a nice sunset.
From Strong Creek we continued south to Grande Prairie to visit a friend, she lives in town but owns an acreage out side of town were we all stayed over the weekend. Continuing south taking the long way around down Highway 2 then across on Highway 43.
At the end of the weekend the weather was turning cool so we continued south, this time taking Highway 40. This highway is now paved much to Stewart’s chagrin. The first time Stewart drove this road in the early ‘90s’ it was a gravel road.
We would be heading to Grande Cache where we stopped in at the local information center which had information on the local wildlife and there area some historic buildings around the attached park.
From here we went to see the towns Labyrinth.
These are the view from the Park.
As this park is on the edge of town and was relatively quite we decided to spend the night here, while we were having an after dinner drink, some locals came by.
Next morning, we continued south towards Edson.