In north-central British Columbia are the hot and dry communities of Ashcroft and Cache Creek. We attended the May 2016 Ashcroft Plein Air Paint Out, which is an important annual event that helps put Ashcroft and Cache Creek on the tourist map. Both Ashcroft and Cache Creek Mayors were in attendance and gave speeches at the Saturday Night Dinner. The towns’ people could not have been more welcoming and hospitable over the three day event. We also met wonderful artists from all over BC.
These quaint, historical towns are all about trains. The CPR (Canadian Pacific Railway), divisional rail yards are located in Ashcroft. Trains are constantly coming and going, starting and stopping in both directions at once. Although these are desert communities within the Thompson Nicola region, every time we set up to paint, the sky would open up and rain. So we ducked under a large overhang of a rail yard building to finish our paintings.
In the evening, we hiked along the hillside above our campsite to take in the grandeur of the desert views above the Thompson River. The air was filled with incredibly beautiful melodies, solely for our delight! Western Meadowlarks and Lazuli Buntings were trying to out-sing each other. We couldn’t identify the many other songbirds as they would not hold still long enough to pose for a photo op!
On to the remote wilds of Wells Gray National Park and delightful Dutch Lake in Clearwater…