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Sat Aug 18 2012: Riding through the BC Drylands

From Lillooet, we rode to Cache Creek in the searing heat of the BC drylands. Temperatures soared to 37C and we took shelter in any available shade we could find. Although not technically a desert in terms of rainfall, the BC interior is semi-arid with its terrain of sagebrush, grasslands and rolling hills. It reminded me a lot of the climate and terrain of the south-west US.

Obligatory riding shot through the BC drylands

View of Highway 99 and Fraser River on the way to Cache Creek

Deserted antique farming equipment arranged as artwork on the plains of drylands

More views of 99 winding its way next to the Fraser

Laundry day. Neda forbid me to show any of my underwear on religious grounds.
They're a bit holey...

At Cache Creek we camped next to a guy who was coming down from Alaska. His name was Gene too! What a co-incidence! And he provided us with maps and advice on traveling north. This must be a sign that we are headed in the right direction. Prior to coming out west, we had no idea where we were going, Taylor from Island BMW told us there were two ways north, the Cassiar Highway and the Alcan (or Alaska Highway). I was just going to follow the GPS, Highway 37, which was the Cassiar, and Taylor told us it was the more direct, but the more scenic route, despite the pavement being not as smooth, when there was pavement (!)...

Who is this handsome chap peering out from the back of the RV in front of me...?

The weather was getting oppressively hot and we stopped at a lake on the way to Prince George to go swimming. We met a few motorcyclists who also had the same idea, many were dipping their T-shirts into the waters to get the evaporative-cooling effect while riding in the heat. At Prince George, we took TransCanada 16 west to try to make it to the beginning of the Cassiar Highway before nightfall.

Came across an interesting sight on the way to the Cassiar

Some of the Wet'suwet'em First Nations tribe set up a fishery in Moricetown Canyon, just north of Smithers, BC. It's the tail-end (pun intended) of salmon spawning season, and the fish were jumping upstream into the waiting nets of the fisherman to be tagged and then released, presumably to help in planning for the numbers for the next season's crop of fish.

Waiting for the fish to jump into the nets. If only fishing were this easy...

HEY! It is *this* easy!

We stayed a while, trying to figure out which fish they tagged and which they just released without tagging, the fish that were the most interesting to them were the ones that jumped straight into the net.

Made it to Kitwanga at the southern end of the Cassiar Highway!

We made a friend at the Cassiar campgrounds

At the campgrounds in Kitwanga, at the beginning of the Cassiar Highway, the owner asked us where we were going and we replied, "North!". He scared us a bit when he said we were heading up kind of late in the season and that we were going to run into cold weather. Hmmm... Oh well. The next morning, his dog Dahlia greeted us at the tent door. Her cuteness factor was high and she delayed us for over an hour the next morning as she taught me how to play fetch with her cloth frisbee.

I taught Dahlia a few tricks as well...

We're steeling ourselves for colder weather ahead!

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