Monday, September 14, 2009

Riding the Mains

Logging companies have built roads throughout the Powell River back country. The larger roads are called mains. We drove south of town to take a ride on the Lois Lake Main. This well maintained dirt road is posted for logging activity 24/7, but typically work is limited on weekends. Even though our ride was on a Saturday, we took extra care to keep an eye out for possible traffic.

Not only did we not see a logging truck in four hours, we didn't see another person or vehicle. A beautiful summer day and we had everything all to ourselves. Lois Lake Main Branch 1 is well marked with yellow mileage signs. We parked our truck and quad trailer close to kilometre 1. Heading up the main, we got peak-a-boo views of Lois Lake through the trees. Just like Powell Lake, it's low after a long, hot summer.

Just after we passed the head of Lois Lake, we headed southbound up the river valley. This is the same path that the new Plutonic Power hydro lines are following. At one point, an extremely long uninterrupted span rises to a mountain pass and disappears beyond. Laying that line (most likely by helicopter) must have been an experience. Along the way, we stopped at Scanlon Creek for a rest in the shade by the rushing water. What a refreshing find on a warm day. It starts at Brooks Lake, our destination for today. They are named for Dwight Brooks and Michael J. Scanlon. Their logging company came to Powell River in the early 1900's and was instrumental in the early days of the paper mill.

At the head of the river valley we popped over the ridge and were greeted with a broad view of the chuck (ocean). It always amazes me how close things are in the back country. The normal way to get to this point is by driving to Saltery Bay and taking the ferry to Earl's Cove. And here we are, only about an hour from our ride's starting point. Looking south you can see the opening to Jervis Inlet, one of the massive glacial carved fjords along our coast.

We left the main to go up an old logging road to Brooks Lake. The first part of the road was a rutted two lane trail through second growth forest. After we passed the new hydro lines, it narrowed even more. At a particularly steep hill I stopped and let Wayne go ahead to the lake. He wasn't able to get there either due to a large tree blown across the trail. We decided to retrace our steps to the truck to make it back to town early. You see, there was a USC vs. Ohio State University football game on TV. Goes to show, you can take the city out of the man, but he will still "fight on!"


I leave you with the soothing sounds of Scanlon Creek. Enjoy! -- Margy


  1. Scanion Creek does sound soothing.
    I would love to hear it in person.
    Your vidio brings it into our homes. It is a lovely dday today I think I will walk from Fairhaven to Blvd. Park and back.

  2. You sure know how to have fun and enjoy the amazing scenery. Hope the game was good. Me-BS from USC, my husband-MS from Ohio St - but no one follows football here :(