Monday, September 14, 2015

Railroad Logging Trestle on Nanton Lake, BC

Stillwater rail line trestle in Nanton Lake.
Last week I read a post about historic railroad logging in the Powell River region on the Powell River Daily News blog. Little did I know that I would be seeing firsthand some of the remnants in the backcountry.

A separate row of pilings supported a loading car.
We met our good friends Dave and Marg to go kayaking and camping at Nanton Lake. Wayne and I waited until the Goat Lake Main logging road opened for public access at 6:00 pm to drive to the Nanton Lake Forest Campground. That would be our kayaking headquarters to explore Nanton and nearby Horseshoe Lake.

On the way back to camp, Dave took us by the southwest corner of the lake. There he showed us the remains of a spur on the The Stillwater Eagle and Northern rail line that carried logs from the backcountry to the ocean from the turn of the 20th Century until 1954 when logging trucks took over. Click here to read the whole story at the Powell River Daily News site.

Axle from rail car used to load the logging train.

Because the lake level was so low this late in the summer, we could see where the pilings crossed the edge of the lake.

The axle from the other side.

Next to the pilings for the rail line, there was a second row that held a loading car that removed the cut logs from the lake and took them up to the waiting railway cars for transport.

Collapsed beams from the loading car support structure.

On one exposed set of pilings, an old axle was rusting away.  At higher water levels, it would be visible.

More of the support structure.

Underwater there were lots of other logs, board, braces and equipment peaking out from under the clear surface.

Staying underwater helps preserve the wood and metal components.

I love finding historical evidence in the backcountry. There's so much to learn about how Powell River was founded, and how it developed over time. you want to learn more about Powell River, my hometown, I highly recommend following Powell River Daily News. The author, who goes by Citizen Journalist, writes several posts daily about what happens in our busy little town. -- Margy


  1. If you like you can link in on an all new edition of "Through My Lens" photo meme. Link is below.

    Mersad Donko Photography

    1. Thanks for the invite, I'll stop on by. - Margy

  2. I love finding old stuff. The neatest thing my family ever found was when I was a kid in the interior we went boat camping to Babine lake (extremely large lake, you can boat for 2 hours and not reach the end) and stopped for lunch on a small island. We found an old cabin on it that was obviously long abandoned. Inside we found a box of blasting caps which we reported to the appropriate authorities without handling :)

    1. There must be hundred, if not thousands, of abandoned cabins in the bush. Today people are tending towards the cities, but in some cases we are heading back to get a sense of calmer, more simple times. - Margy

  3. Great bit of history.

  4. Stunning refflections and I loved the under water shot as well

  5. Anonymous8:04 PM

    What a beautiful lake!

  6. T is so pretty up there! I always like the look of old pilings for some reason.

  7. Thanks everyone for stopping by and commenting on my historical part of the world. - Margy

  8. You have amazing adventures. I did the lawn today.


We welcome your comments and questions. - Wayne and Margy