Early snow on rail trail

October 18, 2019

Up in the Okanagan Valley, in south-central British Columbia, a few weeks ago, I took my Nikon F6 equipped with a Voigtlander 58mm/1.4 to the Myra Canyon Trestles, part of a much longer rail trail along the long-abandoned Kettle Valley Railway. These trestles were lovingly--amazingly--restored by the local trail association after a devastating forest fire in 2003, which destroyed 270 homes, burned 26,000 hectares of forest and incinerated 12 of the wooden trestles. 

 

The tunnels aren't long. 

 

The trestles were the engineering answer to challenging terrain:   

 

Myra Canyon presented a challenging obstacle to Chief Engineer Andrew McCullough. At an elevation of 1280 metres, the highest section of the KVR, it is a deep, steep and wide chasm, carved out by two main creeks: today’s KLO and Pooley creeks. McCulloch creatively hung his railway on the sides of the canyon, using nearly eleven kms of track to reach around something less than one kilometer wide. Completed in 1914, it took 19 (now 18) wooden trestles of various lengths and heights to do it. McCulloch commented that he had never seen a railway built in such difficult conditions. His engineers aptly called it “McCulloch’s Wonder”. LINK

 

 

 

 

 

 Although the bike rental trailer had closed (which was a surprise to me as I'd planned to bike the route, and had driven up in a rental car without taking my bike), a few locals brought theirs. To do all the trestles would be 24km round-trip. I walked 8km (4km one-way). 

 

If you want to learn more, or to plan a visit, this pdf brochure is a good place to start. Or check the society's excellent website

 

 

 

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