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Printed by William H.  Cullin, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.
1917. Victoria, B.C., April, 1917.
To His Honour Frank Stillman Barnard,
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of British Columbia.
May it please Your Honour:
Herewith I beg respectfully to submit the Annual Report of my Department for
the year ending December 31st, 1916.
Minister of Lands. PART I.
DEPARTMENT OE LANDS. Victoria, April 24th, 1917.
The Honourable T. D. Pattullo,
Minister of Lands, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the Annual Report of the Department of
Lands for the twelve months ending December 31st, 1916.
I have the honour to be,
Your obedient servant,
Deputy Minister of Lands. DEPARTMENT OF LANDS.
February 28th, 1917.
G. R. Naden, Esq.,
Deputy Minister of Lands, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit herewith tabulated statements covering the volume of
work carried out in the Department and the different land agencies in connection with the
administration of the lands in the Province during the year 1916, as follows:—
(1.)   Statement showing the number of pre-emption records, certificates of improvements,
and certificates of purchase issued by the different agencies:
(2.)   Statement of Crown grants issued, divided into the different classes of such grants;
also showing the total acreage Crown-granted of pre-emptions, mineral claims, and
purchased lands:
(3.)  Statement of coal-prospecting licences, coal leases, and sundry leases issued, showing the money collected in connection therewith and the approximate area thereof:
(4.)  Statement showing the revenue received by the head office at Victoria, giving in
tabulated form the amounts received each month:
(5.)  Comparative statement of the different items covered by the foregoing statements
since the year 1903.
I have, etc.,
Chas. A. Pope,
Secretary to Department of Lands.
729 L 6
Eeport of the Minister op Lands.
Pre-emptions      316
Purchase     Ill
Minerals      338
Town lots     34
Reverted land  5
Reverted mineral     17
" School  Act "  6
" Soldiers' Homestead Act"     11
Miscellaneous     9
Crown grants written up    S47
Applications for Crown grants     90S
Certified copies of counterfoils        13
Total Acreage deeded.
Pre-emption   53,122 16
Purchase  surveyed     20,702 75
Purchase unsnrveyed      11,916 70
Mineral      12,800 39
Total acreage deeded    98,542 00
Coal-peospecting Licences.
Licences Issued.
Licence Fees.
Transfer Fees.
$13,350 00
$150 00
Coal Leases.
$4,246 59
$27,908 73
$32,155 32
Sundry Leases.
$430 00
$21,174 56
$21,604 56
Surveyed la
nds sold	
lands sold	
........ 397 7
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r-JJ L 8 Beport of the Minister of Lands. 1917
G. R. Naden, Esq., April 3rd, 1917.
Deputy Minister of Lands, Victoria, B.C.
Sib,—I have the honour to submit my annual report covering the work of the Inspection
Branch of the Department of Lands during 1916.
With the exception of Cariboo and Lillooet, practically every district in the Province was
visited by one of the Inspectors during the year. They have examined and reported upon a
total of 1,617 claims, as detailed below:—
Pre-emptions inspected in 1916.
Alberni         76 Nelson        83
Atlin      12 New Westminster	
Cariboo  Nicola     131
Cranbrook       118 Osoyoos        33
Fernie     39 Revelstoke        14
Fort Fraser     24 Similkameen     54
Fort George   21S Skeena     236
Golden        34 Slocan        23
Hazelton          3 Vancouver    358
Kamloops     62 Victoria        62
Lillooet     Yale        32
The conditions prevailing during the past year have been even less conducive to rapid
development of the land than those which existed in 1915. This is owing, in a great measure,
to the large number of pre-einptors who have joined His Majesty's Forces or. have taken up
munition-work at home and overseas. No less than 1,198, or about 10 per cent, of the pre-
emptors in the Province, are thus engaged at present, and while this absence of man-power must
of necessity hold back the development of the Province along certain lines, still it is gratifying
to know that so many pre-emptors have answered to their country's call.
The same provisions as were carried out during 1915 for the protection of pre-emptors by
leave of absence while away from their claims serving in any capacity in connection with the
war have been followed during the past year.
During the year 1,167 new pre-emption records have been issued, which is a considerable
falling-off as compared to 1915, but it must be borne in mind that immigration to this Province,
both from Eastern Canada and abroad, has been almost at a standstill. As was the case during
the previous two years, the majority of the new settlers pre-empted in the districts tributary to
the Grand Trunk Pacific and Pacific Great Eastern Railways, though considerable areas were
taken up in the vicinity of the Kettle Valley Railway, East Kootenay. and the Coast of the
The various Land Commissioners in the Province have issued 465 certificates of improvement
during the year. While this is a smaller number than were issued in 1915, it is a very creditable
showing under existing conditions.
The reports of the Inspectors, which are submitted herewith, give a general outline of the
individual work done by them during the year and of the improvements made and the conditions
existing in the various districts under their supervision. I regret that there is no report
available from the Inspector operating in the Fort George District, but the official returns
received from him during the year indicate that the inspection of pre-emptions was carried out
with due diligence, although a good deal of his time was taken up in the examination and
classification of lands which were thrown open to pre-emption, and other work of a similar
It was found impossible to have any inspections made in the Cariboo and Lillooet Districts
during the past year, as there was no Inspector available for the work, no appointment having
been made to fill the vacancy caused by the enlistment of G. Wallace.
The Atlin District was visited for the first time since the inception of the Inspection Branch,
and every pre-emption in that district was inspected and reported upon. 7 Geo. 5 Coast District. L 9
The actual number of claims inspected is less than in former years, and is accounted for
by the fact that the Inspectors have been called upon to perform various other duties, such as
special inspections for the various Government Agents, examining and reporting on certain areas
of land, and various other matters pertaining to land affairs.
The selection of the interest accruing to the Crown in townsite subdivisions was confined to
five small parcels, consisting of three additions to the town of Trail, one at Yahk, and one in
North Vancouver.
In closing, I may state that, although in some lines there is a falling-off and existing conditions are not favourable to the rapid settlement and development of the land, the inspection
of pre-emptions has proved to be of benefit in that connection, and that the advantages to be
derived from this form of supervision will be more apjiarent in the future as the conditions
I have, etc.,
H. Cathcart,
Superintendent, Inspection Branch.
January 9th, 1917.
H.  Cathcart, Esq.,
Superintendent, Inspection Branch,  Victoria,  B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on my operations as Inspector of
Pre-emptions during the year 1916:—
Owing to the severe winter and the late spring which followed, the work of inspection in
the field was not undertaken until March 15th. Previous to that date my time was occupied
in work on the pre-emption records issued from the Victoria office from 1884 to the end of 1915.
All possible information appertaining to the many old records was obtained and noted, and as a
consequence all these old records are now in very good shape.
The records issued from Vancouver, New Westminster, Alberni, and Nanaimo were gone
into also, and all these, as well as the Victoria records, were listed and tabulated for my own
use in the field.
On March 15th I left Victoria for Sechelt on special work for the Government Agent of
Vancouver. Upon completion of my work in that vicinity, I proceeded to Powell River and made*
an inspection of the 40-aere lots situated about one mile north of that place. With the exception
of a few who are on active service, the pre-emptors of these lots have done very well in the
slashing and clearing of their land, although some of them have shown very little tendency
towards cultivation of the soil. From Powell River I left for Lund and Seymour Narrows on
special work for the Department of Lands.
On my return to Victoria I made an inspection throughout the Victoria Division, including
Otter, Sooke, Goldstream, and Highland Districts, and found conditions here practically the same
as the previous year. Saltspring and Saturna Islands were also visited and all pre-emptions on
these islands were included in a thorough inspection.
Several of the pre-emptors from -Saltspring Island have signed up for active service during
the past year, ibut, aside from this, I could see no difference from the conditions as they existed
during my 1915 inspection.
On Saturna Island I noticed a slight improvement, and since my last inspection the pre-
emptors had made fair headway in the slashing and clearing of their land. -Several pre-emptions
have been taken up here during the past year, but these are mostly rough and rocky, broken in
places, with small patches of agricultural land. The climatic conditions of this island are
somewhat similar to those of Victoria, and roots, hay, small fruits, and fruit-trees can be grown
On June 1st I arrived at Powell River and proceeded by launch to Grief Point, where I
inspected the 40-acre lots situated in that vicinity. Many of the pre-emptors on these lots have
built themselves fairly good homes and have small areas cultivated. I am of the opinion that
fruit-trees and small fruits will do exceptionally well here, the soil being gravelly. L 10 Eeport of the Minister of Lands. 1917
On completion of my work in the vicinity of Powell River, I proceeded up Powell Lake to
the Olson Lake Valley. Since my last visit most of the pre-emptors have made good headway
in the clearing, slashing, and cultivation of their land, and have in most cases obtained splendid
results, as the soil is very productive. Roots of various varieties and small fruits, such as
strawberries, etc., find a ready market at Powell River.
During my visit to this locality I had occasion to make a special inspection of several preemptions lying about one mile back from the shore of Powell Lake. Two of the pre-emptions
referred to are deserving of special mention. These are held by Italians, who have made a
great showing in the clearing, stumping, and draining of a large swamp covered with cedar and
scrub timber. During the past year they have slashed and cleared 25 acres of land, of which 8
acres is drained, stumped, and all under cultivation in roots, hay, etc. From this area they
obtained fair results and found no difficulty in disposing of their produce at Powell River.
Leaving Powell River, I took steamer for Lund, and from there made an inspection of the
40-acre lots in the vicinity of Okeover Arm. Many of these lots, in my opinion, have been taken
up merely as homes, as little has been done towards cultivation. However, a few of the pre-
emptors have good clearings and small patches under cultivation. From the head of Okeover
Arm I took a rowboat to the head of Theodosia Arm and Grace Harbour, inspecting all preemptions en route. Several of these pre-emptors are living on their claims with their families
and have a fair amount of improvements done.
On June 10th I arrived at Salmon River and commenced an inspection of the pre-emptions
in the valley. The 40-acre lots thrown open to pre-emption on June 16th, 1914, are nearly all
occupied, and, considering the hard clearing on the greater portion of this land, many of the
pre-emptors have made fair headway and have obtained good results from the soil. The Government has built a splendid bridge across the Salmon River at Sayward Post-office, and a good
road (formerly the Hastings Mills Company's logging-railway grade) extends up the valley for
a distance of nine miles through the 40-acre lots, making this land easy of access. During my
visit to this section there was great activity in the opening-up of logging camps along the Coast,
and pre-emptors who were willing to work had no difficulty in obtaining it, as there was a great
scarcity of loggers in that vicinity during the year. Some of the pre-emptors have brought their
wives and families on to the land with them and appear to be endeavouring to make a success
of their undertaking.
From Salmon River I took steamer to Thurston Bay, where I secured a Government launch,
which was put to my service by Mr. McKay, of the Forest Branch, and proceeded to make a
number of special inspections in the vicinity of Blind Channel and. Okisollo Channel, taking in
also several scattered pre-emptions along the Coast as far as Pender Harbour.
From Pender Harbour I reached several scattered pre-emptions on Garden Bay Lake and
towards Saginaw Lake. Very few of the pre-emptors in this vicinity have done very much in
the way of cultivation, and I am of the opinion that in most cases these records have been taken
out merely for the purpose of obtaining a home near the Coast. The land as a whole is rough,
rocky, and broken, with only scattered patches through it which could be cultivated.
Working from Sechelt, on August 20th, I covered the 40-acre lots situated one mile and a
half north of that place. Many of those who have taken out records on these lots are now
away on active service, but of those who remain the majority have made a fair showing on their
claims since my last visit. The greater part of the land covered by these 40-acre lots is fair
agricultural land in easy reach of the water-front.
I secured a launch at Sechelt and inspected all pre-emptions from Porpoise Bay, Salmon
Arm, Narrows Arm, Skookumchuck to Agamemnon Channel. The character of the land where
most of these pre-emptions are located is rough, rocky, broken, and in places mountainous, with
possibly a few acres in patches which could be brought under cultivation. This inland waterway
is an ideal spot for the summer, and it is apparent that many of these places have been recorded
merely with the intention of establishing a home, as very little has been accomplished in the
way of cultivation. During my visit the majority of the pre-emptors were in occupation, many
with their wives and families.
During July I took in the country lying along the Pacific Great Eastern Railway in the
vicinity of Green, Summit, Alto, and Daisy Lakes. Very little has been accomplished in this
district during the past year, although a few of the pre-emptors in the vicinity of Summit and
Daisy Lakes have made fair progress. 7 Geo. 5 Coast District. L 11
The latter part of September was spent in making a thorough inspection of the pre-emptions
in the vicinity of Stillwater and the Gordon Pasha Lakes. From Stillwater I reached the First
Gordon Pasha Lake over the Brooks, iScanlon & O'Brien logging-railroad, and proceeded by a
rowboat as far as the Horseshoe River, on the Second Lake, from which point a trail built by
the pre-emptors extends about three miles inland through quite an area of agricultural land.
This agricultural area extends from the narrows between the First and Second Gordon Pasha
Lakes northerly to Horseshoe Lake. In my opinion, this part of the country is an ideal spot for
the pre-emptor. Up to the time of my inspection eight records had been issued, and I found
most of the holders in occupation. A few have brought in their wives and families, have built
fairly good'homes, and are apparently quite satisfied. A good market for all produce raised can
be obtained at the logging camps of the Brooks, Scanlon & O'Brien Company, as they are now
operating on a large scale in this vicinity. In my opinion, all these pre-emptions could be made
into splendid farms. From my own observation I would judge that there would be about 2,000
acres in this valley still open for pre-emption, and in the course of time, as the country is logged
off and leases expire, there will be some additional areas of good agricultural land available
for settlement.
On October 12th I arrived at Hardy Bay and proceeded through to Coal Harbour, on Quatsino Sound, a distance of ten miles by trail. Here accommodation can be had at T. Sorrensen's,
and launches may be obtained by any one wishing to go through to any portion of Quatsino
Sound. Continuing up to the head of the South-east Arm of the sound, I had occasion to stop
in at the site of the Colonial Lumber and Paper Mills Company's mills, where I found a scene
of great activity. Over 100 men were employed clearing a site for the company's buildings, over
25 acres being stumped. On this area several buildings have been constructed and others are
in course of construction. On my return trip to Coal Harbour I inspected all pre-emptions en
route. From what I observed on my trip through the Quatsino Sound locality I formed the
opinion that there would be no lack of work for the pre-emptors on the end of Vancouver Island
for some time to come, as there are three large mining properties opening up. These are the
Sport, Yreka, and June Groups.
From Hardy Bay I reached the Kains Lake country by trail. I found that the greater
number of pre-emptors throughout this section had made little or no headway during the past
three years, and although they have a fair trail from Hardy Bay into Kains Lake, very little
effort has been made by some of them to live on and improve their lands. In fact, they live at
Hardy Bay, where they have built cabins, and do not make any pretence at living on their
Having completed my work in the Hardy Bay vicinity, I crossed Queen Charlotte Sound by
launch to Blunden Harbour and inspected all pre-emptions within a reasonable distance of that
place. The land lying along the shore-line here is rough and broken, but a short distance back
one gets into scrub cedar and pine land somewhat similar to the land at Millbrook Cove, Smith
Sound, and consists of partly open wet meadows, with stretches of rolling and hilly land between.
The settlers in this vicinity are isolated at present, their closest communication being with Hardy
Bay, which place is at times during the winter months inaccessible owing to the necessity of
crossing Queen Charlotte Sound. Although these records have been taken out only a short
time, some of the pre-emptors have brought small patches of land to a state of cultivation and
have been very successful in growing grasses and roots, etc. Fruit-trees that were planted a
year ago appear to be thriving exceptionally well.
The earlier part of Novem-ber was spent in quite an extensive inspection of Malcolm Island.
At Sointula, the point of call for all steamers going to or from the island, there is quite a settlement of Finlanders, who have built themselves good homes, many having a few acres under
cultivation. These people appear to have no difficulty in finding a market for their produce,
either at Prince Rupert or Vancouver, as the Canadian Pacific and Union Steamship Companies'
steamers make weekly and bi-weekly calls at this port. In scattered areas throughout the-
interior of the island there are several pine-swamps, fairly open in spots, which could be easily
cleared, but a considerable amount of ditching would be necessary to bring the land to a fit
state for cultivation. The balance of the land is covered with cedar, spruce, and hemlock, with
windfall and dense salal in places, making it extremely difficult for the intending settler to gain
any headway. On May 18th, 1915, about 250 40-acre tracts, just previously surveyed, were
thrown open for pre-emption, but up to the present time only thirty-five records have been issued. L 12 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
During my recent inspection I visited all these pre-emptions and found that the pre-emptors who
were fortunate to locate near the shore were living on their land. Of the remainder who preempted farther back, some have left the island, while a few are living with their families in
houses they have built near the beach. At Mitchell Bay, near the extreme east end, there is a
splendid site for a wharf, and from personal observation I am of the opinion that a trail, built
to grade, from this point across the centre of the island from east to west, through these lots,
would solve the difficulty of settling this large area of agricultural land, which contains some
10,000 acres. Under the present conditions these lots will never be occupied in a bona-fide
manner, as the difficulty in getting to these places is in most cases very great, and will be hard
to overcome on account of the dense growth of salal and the heavy windfall in places. Such
trail, if built to grade as mentioned, could later on, as cultivation advances, be widened into a
From Malcolm Island I proceeded to and made a complete inspection of Cortes Island. Here
I found that the pre-emptors, with but a few exceptions, had made a much better showing on
their lands than in the previous year. Several of those who have taken out records during the
past one or two years are now away on active service.
During the month of December I visited the north-western half of Texada Island. On the
swamp and bench lands many of the pre-emptors have done considerable ditching and clearing,
and are in a fair way to obtain good results from the soil.
Further information regarding the characteristics of Texada Island, Cortes Island, the
Kains Lake country, Olson Lake Valley, the vicinities of Sechelt and Lund, the 40-acre lots at
Powell River, and the land along the route of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway is contained in
my reports of 1913, 1914, and 1915.
In the localities I have visited in the course of my inspections small areas of scattered
parcels of land may be obtained for pre-emption, but I found no large areas of Crown lands
which would be available for this purpose.
During the past year I have reported on 500 pre-emptions, and have also made many special
inspections for the Department of Lands and for the Government Agents in the districts which
I represent.
I have, etc.,
James Smith,
Inspector of Pre-emptions.
Prince Rupert, B.C., January 4th, 1917.
H. Cathcart, Esq.,
Superintendent, Inspection Branch, Victoria, B.C.
iSir,—Herewith I have the honour to submit my report on inspection of pre-emptions in the
Skeena and Hazelton Land Districts.
Inspection duties began in June, and the month was devoted to getting the field-books, lists,
and blue-prints in the Prince Rupert and Hazelton offices ready for the season's work. The
greater part of the month was spent in the Prince Rupert office.
During the month of July the northerly portion of Porcher Island was visited. A great
many of the pre-emptors follow fishing as an additional help, and there were but few in occupation. Those who did remain found a ready market for what they could raise in the way of
fowl, eggs, and potatoes. A weekly service by gasolene-launch runs most of the time. This
only serves the one part of the island and the balance of the settlers are placed at a considerable
disadvantage. Quite a few inquiries have been made regarding the possibilities of placing a
number of cattle on the island. There are some thousands of acres on the north-westerly side
facing the Kitkatla Inlet, on a high plateau, where feed, according to men who have cruised over
it, is fairly good. The climate is mild and winter feeding would not be such an item as it is in
the Interior and colder sections of the Province.   Being within such easy reach of transportation 7 Geo. 5 Skeena and Hazelton Districts. L 13
and the market at Prince Rupert should be additional inducement to those thinking of embarking
in the venture. At a considerably later date the other portions of the island were visited, when
quite a few of the settlers had returned from fishing and resumed their land pursuits.
An inspection trip to the valley of the Nass was not made the past season. From inquiries
made of those who reported at the Prince Rupert office from that district, it was learned that
nearly all the settlers were away at the canneries or the lumber and mining camps. Although
the land in the valley of the Nass is equal to the best in the Province, and will produce wonders
in the way of root-crops, the means of transportation are so limited and difficult that the settlers
are not keen on putting in large crops; consequently they are forced to go outside to get money
to buy food and enable them to make their clearing and improvements on the land. Though the
prospects for the immediate future are not of the most roseate hue, yet there are a great many
who have an abiding faith in the valley of the Nass.
Kitimat Valley is in somewhat the same predicament as the Nass Valley—lack of communication with the outside world. The steamboats only call on special trips. A -bi-monthly mail
service is given from Hartley Bay. Gasolene-launches call at intervals. During the past season
considerable logging was carried on along the shores of Kitimat Arm and a number of pre-
emptors in the valley were employed. As there is at present practically no means of getting
out any produce, the settlers raise only enough for home consumption. Some are raising cattle.
There is a fair amount of summer feed in the open places, but only for a limited number of
animals.    Kitimat was not visited during the season.
Kitsumgallum and Lakelse Valleys were visited during the early part of September and the
latter part of October. There are few pre-emptors in the Lakelse, most of them having " proved
up " and received their certificates of improvement. Quite a lot of vegetables and berries are
shipped from this section. Last season the markets on the Grand Trunk Pacific, both east and
west, were supplied with strawberries, raspberries, and currants. Hundreds of crates were
shipped. The coming season of 1917 promises to be better than ever. More ground will be
cultivated and better facilities for picking, boxing, and marketing the crops are being arranged
for.    There are still some vacant quarter-sections to be had.
On the Kitsumgallum side of the Skeena River many of the settlers left the land and took
employment elsewhere. The crops of roots and vegetables were very good this season and the
prices are higher than they have been in years. Those who stayed on the land and got fair
crops are holding their produce till spring in hopes of an advance in price. Like the Lakelse
side of the Skeena, the Kitsumgallum Valley was settled up fairly well some years ago with the
advent of the Grand Trunk Pacific. Most of the settlers have either Crown grants or certificates
of improvement. There are, still, a number of pre-emptors in the valley, and also some vacant
During the month of August Atlin District was visited and a number of pre-emptions
inspected in that locality. It is surprising what excellent quality of hay and oats can be raised
in that section, and the root-crops are splendid. There is a limited area of ground, tout ample
for local needs for years to come if the right kind of people are in possession. It is only
necessary to cultivate a limited area, and do it well, when the price obtained for potatoes is not
less than $7 per sack of 100 lb. Summer frosts occur, -but in sheltered places it is not liable to
be too troublesome. The pursuit of agriculture is only in its- infancy and experimental stage at
present, yet there is no reason to doubt that those who follow it up intelligently and thoroughly
will win ont in the end.    As far north as Dawson the finest vegetables in the world are grown.
Banks Island was visited the early part of December. There has not been a very perceptible advance in improvements made on the pre-emptions generally, though in individual cases
quite an amount of work has been done. Here, again, the lack of connection with the Mainland
is a drawback, gasolene-launches and sailboats being the only means of transportation and
communication. The climate is mild and the soil good. Roots and vegetables grow to immense
size and are of good quality. A big percentage of the settlers are of Scandinavian origin. They
are good workers and practical. When conditions revert to normal and the settlers on the
island are in a position to earn more money and spend a greater portion of their time on the
land, Banks Island will forge ahead. Agitation for a wharf and regular mail service has been
going on for some time, but until a survey has been made of the waters adjacent to the island
there is little likelihood of a wharf being built or steamers calling.    The Dominion Government L 14 Keport of the Minister of Lands. 1917
has decided to build a float in the harbour at Larsen Island, and the post-office authorities are
endeavouring to arrange for a monthly service.
Graham and Moresby Islands, of the Queen Charlotte Islands Group, were inspected during
December. Probably a larger number of pre-emptors have come and gone from these islands
than any other division of the Skeena Land District. Quite a boom occurred six or seven years
ago and expectations ran high. Coal and oil prospecting was carried on for some time, with
rather disappointing results. This reacted on the settlers and caused a number of them to
leave. For some reason the timber on the island, of which there is a fair amount of excellent
quality, does not seem to have been handled in such a manner as to be a source'of revenue. This
was another disappointment, as many of those taking up land looked forward to working in the
woods close by the land, thus being in a position to earn good wages without having to go far
from their, homes.    No doubt this caused quite a few to leave the island.
From reliable sources it is now learned that two sawmills at least, and maybe three, will be
in operation on the Masset Inlet before very long. This will give employment to a number of
settlers and relieve the present depression. It was learned on good authority during the last
trip that at least 100 head of cattle could be shipped if there were only some means of reliable
transportation. At present there is a bi-monthly service, but there is so much uncertainty as
to the order of calling by the steamer, the settlers are not in a position t6 have their cattle on
hand. To kill and keep for a number of days is not possible; on the other hand, to round up the
cattle and ship them on the hoof, after being kept in corrals a few days, is also out of the
question. There is no abattoir in Prince Rupert, consequently there is reluctance on the part of
the dealers in buying on the hoof. When the cattle question is solved, a load will be lifted from
the shoulders of the people of the islands. This applies to hogs also. Those who put in crops
the past season got very good results.
The latter part of the month of August, a trip was made to the Kispiox Valley and east
along the line of the Grand Trunk Pacific as far as Foresdale. Inspection of some few preemptions was made and revaluation of improvements on pre-emptions relocated. A very dry
and cold spring, the worst and probably the only of its kind, ibegan in that part of the country
and resulted in the poorest of crops, particularly in regard to roots and vegetables. Hay and
grain did somewhat better. Most of the settlers were out looking for employment. The weather
conditions were not confined to the sections mentioned. British Columbia, almost as a whole,
felt the effects, and the settlers are by no means discouraged because of the failure of one season.
A great many are investing their spare cash in young cattle. There are now in the neighbourhood of 3,000 head of cattle in the country. Conditions are ideal for stock-raising. Wild hay
grows in plenty and peavine in abundance. The side-hills give plenty of both fall and spring
range. Hog-raising also promises to be profitable as soon as the pre-emptors get enough land
under cultivation to grow feed for fattening.
I have, etc.,
C. L. CuELiN,
Inspector of Pre-emptions.
January 5th, 1917.
H. Cathcart, Esq.,
Superintendent, Inspection Branch, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour of submitting to you my annual report. I began my inspection-
work this year in the Osoyoos District, fulfilling my duties to the best of my ability in that line,
also noting the various changes and improvements along the lines of land-clearing, acreage put
under cultivation during the past season, road improvements, as well as land available for
In Township 3 there has been a limited amount of land cultivated, but enough to prove that
excellent crops of grain, hay, and vegetables can be grown on the pre-emptions now taken up.
There are also a few good quarter-sections, both in Townships 3 and 6, available for preemption, and though the clearing is heavy there is an excellent market in Vernon for the wood. 7 Geo. 5 Osoyoos, Sihilkajieen, Nicola, etc., Districts. L 15
In Townships 42 and 43, in the vicinity of Mabel Lake, the clearing and cultivation of land
is steadily increasing and mixed farming carried on successfully. To the east of Mabel Lake
there is a considerable area of good bench land available for pre-emption; the clearing is fairly
heavy, but the land is exceptionally good.
In the vicinity of Sugar Lake, apart from the timber limits that will shortly come in for
agricultural purposes, owing to the white pine being practically all dead, there is a considerable
quantity of bench and bottom lands with reasonably light clearing.
In Township 11 and along the Salmon River Valley a few pre-emptions have been taken up,
but the clearing is heavy, and while the upper benches will accommodate a good many settlers,
the lack of roads, also the rather heavy clearing, will for a time prove a hindrance.
Along the west side of Okanagan Lake a few good pre-emptions have been taken up on the
logged-off timber limits about Shorts Creek. Other lands in this neighbourhood are still available for pre-emption, and though dry bench, soil is deep and good.
In Bear Creek Valley there is a splendid opportunity for more settlers, and owing to the
vast acreage of range land there are great advantages for stock and mixed farming. A quantity
of this is rough, open timber range extending south to the boundary of the Nicola and Similkameen District, where land for growing hay is obtainable. Stock-raising can easily be made very
profitable.        ■   .
In Boundary Valley and Rector Mountain the settlers have made greater progress, as this
part of the country is more open, giving the settler a better chance to keep stock. Good crops
of grain have been grown on this high sloping bench land.
Similkameen District.
From the boundary of the Osoyoos, down the West Fork of the Kettle River, this district
suffers a great drawback on account of there being no road from the Summit to Carmi, a distance
of thirty miles. If this were connected it would enable settlers to take in supplies, etc., and
form an outlet for their produce. There are some good blocks of land available for settlement
in the vicinity of Carmi, jack-pine bench land running into small open meadows.
On Beaver Creek, in the vicinity of Beaverdale, there are also some good quarter-sections
suitable for hay or grain; the land is deep and very fertile and the clearing fairly heavy. On all
the West Fork of the Kettle River there is abundance of range land and a very small percentage
of stock.
About Nicholson Creek and through to its headwaters considerable progress has been made
in clearing and general improvements.    Clearing is heavy in this section as the timber is large.
A considerable number of pre-emptions have been taken up in the neighbourhood of Phoenix
and Grand Forks, and quite an extent of land cleared. It is high bench, but has plenty of
moisture and produces good crops. A part of it is light clearing, having been burned over,
leaving only small dead stuff. Through the section of the country known as Anarchist Mountain,
running from Bridesville to the Okanagan slope, will eventually be a splendid grain section, as
the land now under cultivation produces unusually heavy crops, the soil being a deep rich loam
with plenty of moisture. The timber being large, but not very thick, makes what clearing there
is heavy. During the past summer new roads have been built that are a great boon to the
In Boundary Valley and Rector Mountain the improvements and general progress is more
marked, as this part of the country is open, giving the settlers greater opportunities in stock-
raising, and good crops of grain have been grown on this high sloping bench land.
Nicola District.
The great advantage to the pre-emptors in settling in this district is the abundance of
grazing land throughout the open timber, enabling them to get a good start in stock and mixed
farming almost immediately. Ample proof of this is shown in the number of settlers that have
established themselves in the past three years with small herds of dairy cattle.
Travelling in the vicinity of Clapperton Creek, one is impressed with the herds of dairy
cattle owned by men who only a few years ago took up their pre-emptions. The timber in this
section is large, scattered fir.   Peavine and wild grass make excellent summer pasture for both cattle and sheep. The same grade of land extends to the north, taking in a large tract in the
vicinity of Ray and Mainete Lakes, where one sees a variety of mixed farming, grain, timothy,
and clover of all kinds doing remarkably well.
The chief drawback to these high -bench lands is the difficulty of road-making and inaccessibility to markets, but once these difficulties are surmounted the settlers make rapid progress.
The same conditions prevail throughout almost the whole of this district. About Aspen
Grove and Loon Lake very much the same results are noticeable, every variety of grain and
clover and almost every variety of vegetable being grown by the pre-emptors; and a goodly
number have now got beyond the experimental stage on their pre-emptions. In the vicinity of
Penask Lake it is still a problem to know the most profitable line of farming to undertake to
enable the settler to remain the whole year on his pre-emption; the land is practically all open,
scattered willow-brush meadow, running into jack-pine benches, and while the settler can put
up quantities of wild hay for winter feed, there is no range land within a reasonable distance to
graze stock during the summer. Those who are making a success are doing so by renting land
in the vicinity of Princeton to pasture their small herds of dairy cattle during the summer.
Through Voght Valley some excellent pre-emptions have been taken up where good blocks of
willow-brush meadow and open timber bench land have been obtained, and other good quarter-
sections are still available.
From Princeton through the section of Five-mile Creek to the boundary of the Osoyoos
District the settlers have made good progress during the past year. Especially along Five-mile
Creek, where they are using irrigation, considerable acreage is now under cultivation, producing
good crops of hay and vegetables; strawberries and other small fruits do remarkably well.
Nearing the Summit at Princeton Crossing, the clearing is very heavy in the bottom lands,
very thick red willow and alder, and less progress is made by the settlers; also from this part
down Trout Creek to the Okanagan Valley progress is being held back by want of roads.
Kamloops District.
In travelling through the section to the east of Vavenby, one is struck by the splendid
opening for new settlements, especially in the valley near the Copper extension of the Beft
River, where are fairly large tracts of bottom and low bench lands, easily cleared. Settlers
should find it to their advantage to locate land here, as it would not be a difficult matter to.
continue the road from the high bench above Vavenby. In the Myrtle River and Clearwater
section the main difficulty is the distance from transportation; as it will take considerable time
to connect this country with roads, settlement will naturally be slow.
In some parts the land is easily cleared and soil excellent, but there being no range in this
vicinity the settler finds it difficult to make any progress. The climate is good and will permit
growing nearly everything in the vegetable line, as well as grain and hay. Eventually this
should be a good settlement.
What has been done along the Thompson River in the way of establishing nice homes can
also be done farther inland by the assistance of good roads, for the land is equally good, if not
better in many places.
In the vicinity of Mount Olie considerable improvement has been made in the clearing of
land, and settlement is increasing; and now that mining and timber operations have started a
ready market will be created for vegetables and dairy produce, in both of which this district
At Chinook Cove very little progress has been made. This settlement was largely German
before the war, now many of their holdings are deserted; also, as there are about 100 pre-emptors in this neighbourhood in military service, the district is feeling the effects. Such is also
the ease in the Barriere Lake section; the majority of the settlers are in military service.
There is room (as was stated in my report last year) for many settlers in the vicinity of
East Barriere Lake and the sloping section towards Adams Lake. On the bench lands adjoining
Badger Creek and Kanuff Lake good thrifty settlers have gone in, and they have thoroughly
tested what can -be grown at this elevation. They have plenty of range land for their stock,
and are growing grain, hay, and roots for winter feed. These settlers will do well, as there is
plenty of grazing for summer and the land is easily cleared to produce winter feed. Geo. 5 East and West Kootenay Districts. L 17
Yale District.
As the majority of the pre-emptions have been taken up by miners and prospectors, improvements have not been extensively carried out. Along the Tulameen River the land is principally
jack-pine bench, with the exception of small blocks of willow-brush meadow land. In Otter
Valley good blocks of bottom land running into jack-pine benches have been pre-empted, and
mixed farming is carried on profitably.
In the vicinity of Princeton the land in this district is of better quality, and some good
pre-emptions have been taken up; b.ut very little development-work has been' done, owing in
some cases to there being no roads.
I have, etc.,
R. Gillespie,
Inspector of Pre-emptions.
Fernie, B.C., January 3rd, 1917.
II. Cathcart, Esq.,
Superintendent, Inspection Branch, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit my report on operations as Inspector of Pre-emptions in
the Land District of East and West Kootenay.
During the season of 1916 I have been able to cover pretty thoroughly the six districts in
East and West Kootenay, and, on the whole, find most of the settlers doing very good work
and making marked advances, although a great many places are lying idle owing to the fact that
so many have joined the Militia.
Although improvements have been steadily going on, there is still a great drawback in the
matter of roads to outlying districts, which makes it difficult for the new settler to make much
headway, for, even if he could raise produce, he has no way to get it out to a market.
In the Revelstoke District there is some very good land, but until such time as the road is
completed we cannot expect much return from it; also in the Galena Bay District there is good
land well adapted to mixed farming, but again no means of transportation.
Along the Upper Arrow Lakes I find there are a number of settlers who are not very
progressive—old-timers who are satisfied to have a home by getting a little work outside, making
enough money to buy a grub-stake and not bothering to clear up the land.
In the Kaslo District the settlers are very scattered. The country is mountainous and the
good land is in small patches. There are a few good places at the north end of Kootenay Lake
at Argenta. One settler on the Lardeau River had his place ruined this summer by the flood
covering most of the land with gravel and destroying his improvements. At Fauquier's Landing
on the Arrow Lakes there are some good places.    The land here is very fertile.
In the Nelson District along the Slocan River the settlers in most cases are doing well,
clearing and getting their places in shape for crops. Also along the Pend d' Oreille River
considerable improvements have been made. The land is of a good quality and here they have
the advantage of good roads. Along the Arrow Lakes the growth has been slower, I fancy,
'owing to lack of transportation and roads.
The Whatshan Lake District does not seem to go ahead; although the land here is good, as
yet no road has been made into it. It lays high and is subject to summer frosts. Hay does well.
Plenty of good fishing and hunting.
In the Cranbrook District, although most of the land is of a light sandy nature, mixed
farming does well, especially where water can be got on the land; but most of the settlers are
hard-up and are forced to leave their places to make a little money to go on with. Those who
can afford to stay on their places are doing nicely and showing that almost all kinds of vegetables, grain, and hay can be raised successfully. One man east of Waldo, on the Kootenay
River, showed me a sample of tobacco which he was growing outside, and it was a first-class
Mixed farming is proving a success in the Marysville and Kimberley District, but the
gophers are getting to be a pest and acres of grain are destroyed every year. Various schemes.
2 L 18 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
have been tried to get rid of them, so far with little success. There has been considerable land
thrown open in the Cranbrook District, north of Cranbrook, and along Skookumchuck for settlement which in my opinion is not fit for farming, as it is rough, stony, hilly land. It might be
suitable for raising goats, but it would be impossible for settlers to make a living on this land.
In the Golden District, along the Upper Kootenay River, there are quite a number of
settlers who have made a lot of improvements, but, as there is no road into them, only a pack-
trail, it makes slow work getting ahead. The Banff-Windermere Road leading into this district
was completely washed out by the floods last summer. Hay would do well in this district. The
seasons are short and the snowfall heavy.
The land along the Columbia River is well suited to mixed farming, but here, as in other
places, the settlers are hard-up for ready money to go along with their development-work, but
are living in hope that the land loan grant will eventually give them the required assistance.
The farming area* open for settlement in the Fernie District is not very large, as most of
the best land, especially that part lying between Elko and Michel, is held by companies and
private speculators, who hold it too high to be handled successfully. However, there is a very
good settlement north of Michel, on the Elk River, where the settlers are making a good showing
and proving up on their properties. There is also a good working settlement in the vicinity of
Dorr, all getting their land in shape for crop. The work of improvement around and north of
Fort Steele is slower and settlers very scattering, although there is some very good land, but
mostly in outlying districts.
Owing to the many demands during the past two years on the people to supply men and
means, I consider, on the whole, the settlers are doing their best, and in most cases are satisfied.
I have, etc.,
W. A. Wilmot,
Inspector of Pre-emptions. PART II.
The Hon. T. D. Pattullo,
Minister of Lands, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on the work of the Survey Branch
of the Lands Department for the year ending December 31st, 1916:—
Owing to the resignation of G. H. Dawson from the office of Surveyor-General, the duty of
the preparation of this report rests w'ith me as his acting-successor. This task is lightened by
the fact that during Mr. Dawson's tenure of office the official relationship which has existed
between him and myself, as Chief Draughtsman under him, has always been very close and one
of mutual confidence.
Surveying Operations
In so far as the administration of the Survey Branch is concerned, the end of 1916 marks
the close of the second year under conditions brought about by the war and other causes
necessitating retrenchment in survey expenditures. When the war broke out in August, 1914,
the survey programme for that year was well under way, and as this programme was carried
.out practically as predetermined, the effects of the changed conditions were scarcely felt until
the beginning of 1915. In that year, however, the appropriation for surveys was very materially
reduced, which necessitated that surveying operations be confined to only the most urgent
requirements. The appropriation for the past year was approximately the same as for the
previous year, and the policy followed in carrying out the work was practically along the
same lines.
The field-work was confined chiefly to the subdivision for settlement of logged-off and expired
timber licences and survey of areas in which actual settlement was taking place.
As in the previous year, the parties sent out were small, averaging about six men, and were
employed for only a comparatively short season, varying from a few weeks to less than five
months, and averaging about three months. Nineteen surveyors were employed on more or less
extensive work, and five were employed on work of shorter duration.
The total number of acres of Crown land surveyed is 128,000 acres, as compared with 127,000
acres in 1915.
Reference was made in last year's report to the effect of the war on the surveying profession,
the conditions occasioned thereby having seriously affected the scope of British Columbia land
surveyors. The past year has not shown any material improvement in this condition, but the
situation is further relieved by the enlistment in the Army of several additional members of the
profession. As far as has been ascertained, 110 British Columbia land surveyors have enlisted
with His Majesty's Forces for foreign service. Twelve of these have made the supreme sacrifice.
The qualifications of a land surveyor are such as to peculiarly fit him for a soldier, and this
statement is verified by the fact that several surveyors at the front have already received high
military honours.
The field operations and the general organization of survey parties have been along the
same lines as in previous years, and have been described at length in previous reports. It is
proposed, therefore, not to enter into these details, but to give a brief summary of the field-work
done in the various sections of the Province into which it is divided for convenience of description
in this report.
Central oVnd Northern Interior.
The Central and Northern Interior, which consists of that portion of the Province lying to
the east of the Coast Range and to the north of the Dominion Railway Belt, was, during the
years preceding 1915, the scene of the greater portion of the somewhat extensive survey operations then being carried out. Approximately 2,000,000 acres of surveyed Crown lands are still
available for pre-emption in this area.   During the past season the work in this portion of the L 22 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
Province was confined to the survey of lands already held under pre-emption record and adjoining
vacant Crown lands.    The following surveyors were employed in the localities indicated:—
F. Tupper  Finlay and Peace Rivers.
F. P. Burden  ' Eaglet Lake.
H. C. Black  Cluculz and Bednesti Lakes.
R. W. Haggen  Quesnel River and Soda Creek.
A. F. Cotton   Little Bridge Creek.
W. S. Drewry   Sheridan Lake.
The work of Mr. Tupper's party is of special interest, being the first surveys made for
settlement purposes at the confluence of the Finlay and Parsnip Rivers. These surveys lie in
the midst of an extensive area of good agricultural land, which apparently awaits only better
means of transportation and the return of normal conditions to be capable of great development.
Some thirty-eight pre-emptions are already located at this point. The Department also availed
itself of the presence on the ground of Alleyne Wright, B.C.L.S., to assist Mr. Tupper in establishing a complete survey connection along the Peace River from these surveys to certain previous
surveys lying to the west of the Dominion Government Peace River Block, thus completing the
last link in a chain of connections from the Dominion lands system of survey in the Railway-
Belt, along certain district boundary-lines, to the point of intersection of the 124th meridian
with Finlay River, and thence down the Finlay and Peace Rivers to connect again with the
Dominion lands system on the boundary of the Peace River Block.
In addition to the above-mentioned surveys, C. W. Williams, B.C.L.S., also surveyed for
this Branch some sixteen lots held under pre-emption record in the vicinity of Williams Lake.
Southern Interior.
In the Southern Interior, being the portion of the Province lying south of the Dominion
Railway Belt, the number of parties employed was six, in charge of the following surveyors:—
O. B. N. AVilkie Nicola District.
R. P. Brown  Fairview.
B. A. Moorhouse    Rock Creek.
A. H. Green  Sproule Creek.
T. T. McVittie    Waldo.
P.  W.  Gregory    Princeton.
The first three mentioned surveyors were engaged on the survey of lands held under preemption record and adjacent Crown lands. A. H. Green and T. T. McVittie subdivided certain
logged-off areas for settlement purposes, while P. W. Gregory surveyed certain areas near
Princeton into parcels suitable for pre-emption purposes.
Mainland Coast. /
The settlement conditions on the Coast areas of British Columbia are entirely different from
those obtaining in the Interior. Owing to the rugged mountainous nature of the country, such
agricultural areas of any extent as do exist are chiefly confined to narrow valleys and strips of
water-front, and these in many instances are not available for settlement owing to the forest
cover bringing them within the class of timber land as defined by the " Land Act." The practice
of recent years of subdividing logged-off lands into small holdings was continued during the
past year. Fifty parcels of this description, of approximately 40 acres in area, were surveyed
during the past season. In addition to this, surveys were made in localities where active
settlement was proceeding.
The following surveyors were employed in the localities indicated:—
J. E. Laverock   Sechelt Inlet.
N. Townsend   Powell Lake.
H. H. Roberts  Valdes and Read Islands.
Jno. Elliott  Cheakamus River.
W. G. McEIhanney  Half Moon Bay, North West
Bay, and Chilliwack.
A small subdivision of an expired timber licence-was also made by F. C. Green in the vicinity
of Port Neville. 7 Geo. 5 Report of the Surveyor-General. L 23
Vancouver Island.
Vancouver Island at the present time contains a very limited amount of unsurveyed land
available for settlement. Large areas of excellent agricultural land will, however, at some
future date become available for the settler when the large timbered tracts on -the west coast
and the northern portion of the island are logged.
During the past season L. S. Cokely and H. H. Browne were employed on surveys in the
vicinity of Quatsino Sound, Rupert District. Their reports mention considerable activity in this
vicinity owing to developments in the mining and pulp industries.
Queen Charlotte Islands.
Owing to extensive survey operations carried out on Graham Island in former years, surveys
on this island are now well in advance of settlement. During the summer of 1916 two parties
were engaged for a short season, one in charge of F. Nash on the completion of certain work
on Skidegate Inlet, and the other in charge of J. C. A. Long on the survey of Crown lands
between Masset Inlet and the east coast of the island, some of which were already held under
pre-emption record.
The reports of these surveyors would indicate that the soil and climatic conditions on
Graham Island have been proven to be very favourable from an agricultural standpoint, but
that other conditions at present militate against development.
Topographical Survey' op Okanagan Valley.
The photo-topographical survey of the watershed of Okanagan Lake was originally undertaken in the spring of 1914, at the request of the Water Branch. About 1,500 square miles of
this watershed have now been covered* extending from Penticton to the south boundary of the
Railway Belt on the east side of the lake, and as far as Summerland on the west side. This
survey furnishes valuable data for the investigation of irrigation problems, as well as information as to character of vacant Crown lands. It also furnishes a convenient system of control
for the plotting of existing surveys and definitely ties in surveys of isolated lots. Approximately
600 square miles, extending from the vicinity of Kelowna to the Railway Belt, were covered
during the past season by the party under R. D. McCaw, who is now engaged with one assistant
in the preparation of the plans and maps.
As in former years, the Department is indebted to E. Deville, LL.D., Surveyor-General of
Dominion Lands, for the use of the necessary photo-topographical surveying instruments.
Interprovincial Boundary' Survey.
The work of the Interprovincial Boundary Commission, operating under the authority of
the Dominion Government and of the Governments of the Provinces of Alberta and British
Columbia, was continued during the past year. The boundary survey is now complete from
the main line of the Canadian Pacific Railway to the 49th parallel of latitude or International
The report of A. O. Wheeler. Commissioner for British Columbia, is attached hereto and
describes the work of the Commission for the year.
The general reports of the surveyors who have been employed during the season, describing
their operations#and the country covered, are attached to this report. t
Private Surveys.
The surveys above described have been made under the direct instructions and at the cost
of this Branch. In addition to this, the Branch is also called upon to deal with the surveys of
lands applied for in various ways for various purposes by private parties, who, under existing
Statutes and regulations, are obliged to have the lands applied for surveyed at their own expense.
Surveys of this nature are known departmentally as " private surveys." They consist of surveys
of pre-emptions, applications to purchase, timber licences, applications to lease, coal-prospecting
licences, and mineral claims. There has been a marked decrease in surveys of this nature during
the past year from the records of previous years, with the exception of mineral-claim surveys. Office-work.
In previous years the work of the office has been the subject of a separate report by the
Chief Draughtsman to the Surveyor-General. This year, owing to Mr. Dawson's resignation,
it is thought advisable to cover the entire work of the Branch in one report.
During the past year there have again been several changes in the staff. Three members
enlisted in the Army for overseas service and one resigned. The man in charge of the blueprinting establishment resigned and has been replaced by a returned soldier. In addition to the
three enlistments above mentioned, two additional members of the staff enlisted at the commencement of the present year. One of these, a junior, it has been necessary to replace. One
stenographer has been temporarily transferred to another branch of the service. The staff at
the commencement of the new year numbers twenty-seven in all, as compared with thirty-four
a year ago. This is a reduction of about 56 per cent, since the beginning of the war. There
has been a considerable decrease in the amount of work handled during the past year from the
previous year, due mostly to the decrease in private surveys. The enlistments from the office
have, however, kept pace with this reduction in work, until now, when practically an irreducible
minimum has been reached, and unless there is a further unforeseen falling-off of work, any
further reduction of the staff would seriously affect its efficiency.
During the year 889 field-books were received, containing notes for 1,538 lots. During the
same period 1,718 lots were plotted and gazetted and tracings prepared and forwarded to the
Government Agents in whose districts they  were located.
The following table gives an analysis of the acreages of the various kinds of surveys dealt
Pre-emptions      14,335
Purchases        S,771
Mineral claims       7,677
Timber limits 302,903
Coal licences   10,983
Leases        5,145
Government surveys .' 124,953
Total    474,767
A comparison of these figures with those of previous years, as far back as 1900, can be made
by reference to Table A attached to this report. Marked decreases are noted in all kinds of
surveys, with the exception of leases and mineral claims, which total to about the average of
recent years. It may be explained here that mineral-claim surveys are not gazetted until the
owners signify their intention of applying for certificates of improvements by notice in the
British Columbia Gazette. The acreage of mineral claims gazetted does not, therefore, show
the acreage of surveys of claims received during the year, which is approximately S,980 acres.
The table above referred to also shows a large decrease in the acreage of Government surveys
dealt with, but is practically the same as the acreage actually surveyed during the year. This
is accounted for by the fact that the figures for 1915 include a large number of surveys actually
made in 1914, which was a comparatively big year.
Timber Survey's.
There is also a reduction of about 40 per cent, in timber surveys. Field-notes for only
471 licences were received during the year, as compared with 670 during 1915. Owing to
financial conditions the Department has refrained from availing itself of the powers conferred
upon it by the " Forest Act" of ordering licensees to survey, except in cases of absolute necessity,
in order to make it possible to deal with the surveys of other private interests. During the past
year notices to survey were issued affecting sixty-two licences, as compared with thirty-four
during 1915.
It is estimated that there are at present 13,693 timber licences in good standing or renewable
under the Statute.    Of these, 9,967 have been surveyed, leaving 3,726 still unsurveyed. 7 Geo. 5 Report of the Surveyor-General. L
Railway' Plans.
This Branch is called upon to deal with the plans deposited by railway companies for the
purpose of acquiring title to right-of-way through Crown lands. During the year survey plans
of 360 miles of right-of-way have been received and 170 miles have been finally dealt with and
cleared for Crown-granting purposes.
Clearance reports—that is, reports as to the status of the lands—have been furnished by
this Branch during the past year on 1,172 applications for pre-emptions and 17 applications to
purchase. The corresponding figures for 1915 were 2,500 and 43 respectively. In addition to
the above, clearances are also reported on for all other applications dealt with by the Lands
Department, including coal licences, timber sales, and hand-loggers' licences. All such applications are plotted and noted on the departmental reference maps. All cancellations of pre-emption
records and other rights are also noted on these maps. Clearances are also furnished on Crown
.grant and lease applications.
Reference Maps.
The departmental reference maps above referred to form the basis of all clearances of
-applications for rights under the Land, Forest, and Coal and Petroleum Acts. They are drawn
on linen in order that they may be blue-printed, and it is the aim of the Branch to keep them
as accurate and up-to-date as possible. Owing to the wear occasioned by constant use and the
receipt of new survey information from time to time, it is necessary to revise and redraw these
maps very frequently. All the possible spare time of the draughtsmen is made use of on this
It is estimated that the area of the Province, outside of the Dominion Government and
Esquimalt & Nanaimo Railway Belts, is about 347,540 square miles. Of this area about 230,000
square miles is covered by departmental reference maps. The new and revised maps made
-during 19X6 cover 43,425 square miles, as compared with 46,620 square miles for 1915.
InformoVtion supplied to Surveyors and Others.
It is the practice of this Branch to make a nominal charge for the preparation of copies
of field-notes, blue-prints, maps, etc., applied for by surveyors in private practice and other
persons who apply for information which requires more or less of a draughtsman's time. The
revenue derived from this source amounts to $1,368.87, as compared with $1,660.89 for 1915.
Copies of field-notes of 200 lots and 583 tracings were prepared in this connection.
The following is a statement of the number of blue-prints made:—
Surveyor-General's Branch  3,572
Counter and mail orders     884
Government Agents  1,758
Other branches of Government Service 2,095
Sundry       773
Total    9,0S2
There were also prepared 846 tracings in duplicate -to be attached to Crown grants, and 117
tracings, also in duplicate, to be attached to leases.
Correspondence and Accounts.
The records show that during the year 4,532 letters were received and 3,909 sent out, not
including interdepartmental memoranda.
The Accountant reports that accounts amounting to $10S,552.52 have been checked and dealt
In addition to the work above outlined, a large amount of general office-work has been
attended to, of which no statistics can be furnished; such as the preparation of special reports,
instructions to surveyors for private and Government surveys, and the furnishing of information
to the general public, both over the public counter and through the mails. L 26 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
Geographic Branch.
The staff of the Geographic Branch was further reduced during the past year through
enlistments, and there are now only two men left to carry on the important work of endeavouring
to keep the maps of the Province up-to-date. Under these conditions it is impossible to deal
with anything but the most urgent requirements.
The following maps were published during the year:—
No. 1g. Cariboo and Adjacent Districts.    Scale, 7.89 miles to 1 inch.
No. 3m. Prince Rupert Pre-emption Sheet.    Scale, 3 miles to 1 inch.
No. 3a. Fort George Pre-emption Sheet.    Scale 3 miles to 1 inch.
No. 5a. Omineca and Finlay River Basins.    Scale, 5 miles to 1 inch.
Special attention is directed to the sketch-map of the Finlay and Omineca River Basins,
being the first map of this nature published by this Branch. It has been compiled from exploratory surveys with a view to showing as much as possible of the information obtained regarding
geographical features and the contour and nature of the country covered.
The map of Northern British Columbia, which was referred to in last year's report has,
owing to depletion in staff, been unavoidably delayed. It is, however, expected that it will be
published and available about May. This map will cover all of that portion of the Province
lying north of latitude 54 degrees on the scale of 17.75 miles to an inch, being the scale of the
wall-map of the Province published in 1912, and will show all the geographical data obtained
since that date.
In addition to the above, the Branch prepared a number of small sketch-maps and diagrams
for use in connection with reports and pamphlets published by other departments.
There is now in course of preparation a map of the northerly portion of Vancouver Island,
but the work is not yet far enough advanced to permit of an estimate of the time required before
it will be ready for publication.
It would be unfitting to close this report without some reference to the retiring Surveyor-
General, G. H. Dawson, and the services rendered by him to -the Department and the Province
during his tenure of office.
Mr. Dawson assumed office in May, 1911, in the midst of a tremendous boom in surveys.
The receipt of field-notes for that year being considerably in excess of any previous or subsequent
years, the work was seriously in arrears and the staff inadequate to deal with it. By reason
of his executive ability and untiring energy an efficient staff was organized and the work brought
up-to-date at the end of a year.
Through his endeavours the numerous disconnected surveys throughout the Province were
tied up in a systematic manner. The Geographic Branch organized by him has made a very
creditable showing in the issuing of numerous maps of the Province which have been in great
demand, and have been very favourably commented upon by experts in map production.
By means of rational and well-considered regulations the standard of survey-work being
done throughout the Province has been considerably improved, in spite of the many conditions
peculiar to this Province which militate against refinements in practice and the adoption of a
comprehensive system of survey.
I have the honour to be,-
Your obedient servant,
Acting Surveyor-General. 7 Geo. 5
Report of the Surveyor-General.
Table A.—Showing Acreages op each Class of Survey's gazetted each Year since 1900.
B.C. dovt.
1900 ...
1901 ...
1902 ...
1903 ...
1904  ...
1905 ...
1906 ...
1907 ...
83,016 -i
1908 ...
1909 ...
1910 ...
1911 ...
1912  ...
1913 ...
1914  ...
1915 ...
1916 ...
Table B.—Showing Proportion of Government Survey's to Total Land Surveys since 1900.
Total Surveys.
Govt. Surveys.
of Govt. Surveys to Total.
1900 to 1906
1907 to 1911
Table C.—Summary of Office-work for the Year 1916 and Comparative Figures for 1915.
1915. 1916.
Number of field-books received        1,774 889
lots surveyed        2,836 1,538
„        lots gazetted and tracings forwarded to Government Agents ..       4,184 1,718
„ miles of railway-location plans received  250
„         miles of right-of-way plans received            755 360
,,         applications for purchase cleared             43 17
„         applications for pre-emption cleared         2,500 1,172
,,        reference maps compiled              22 17
„         Crown-grant applications cleared            676 846
Total number of letters received by Branch         8,218 4,532
„         „        Crown-grant and lease tracings made in duplicate          714 963
blue-prints made        10,801 9,082
Total revenue from information, blue-prints, maps, etc $1,660.89 $1,368.S7 L 28
Report of the Minister of Lands.
Table D—List of Lithographed Maps.
Year of
Title of Map.
2 a
2 b
3 a
3 b
Geographic Series—
British Columbia. In four sheets. Showing roads and
trails, railway systems, etc.
British Columbia. In one sheet. Showing Land Districts
British Columbia. In one sheet. Showing Land
Recording Divisions
British Columbia. In one sheet. Showing Mining
Kootenay, Osoyoos, and Similkameen. Showing Mining
Kootenay, Osoyoos, and Similkameen. Showing Land
Recording Divisions
British Columbia. In one sheet. Showing Electoral
Cariboo and Adjacent Districts. Showing Land Recording Divisions .
Northern British  Columbia   	
Lantd Series—
Southerly Vancouver Island	
New Westminster and Yale Districts	
Pre-emptors' Series—
Fort  George   	
Stuart  Lake   	
Bulkley Valley  	
Peace  River   	
Tete Jaune   	
North Thompson   	
Graham   Island,  Queen  Charlotte  Islands   	
Prince  Rupert   	
Degree Series—
Rossland   Sheet   	
Nelson   Sheet   	
Cranbrook   Sheet   	
Fernie   Sheet   	
Upper Elk River Sheet  	
Duncan River Sheet   	
Windermere Sheet  	
Arrowhead Sheet   	
Topographical Series—
Omineca and Finlay River Basins, Sketch-map of	
Sayward District,  Sketch-map of  	
Yale District and Portion of Adjacent Districts	
Rupert and Coast Districts, Portions of	
Northern  Interior   	
New Westminster and Vancouver Island. Portions of. .
British Columbia, South-west Portion of. (Second iss.)
Kootenay District, East and West, showing Mining Divs.
Northern  Interior.     (A.  G.  Morice.)  	
British Columbia.     In two sheets	
Kootenay District, East, Triangulation Survey of  ....
Osoyoos District, Portion of   	
Kootenay District, West Division, and Part of Lillooet,
Y'ale, etc., Mining Recording Divisions
Kootenay District,  West,  Portion of	
Vancouver Island, West Coast, Portion of ; Clayoquot
17.75 m. to 1 in.
30 m.  to 1 in.
30 m.  to 1 in.
30 m. to 1 in.
7.89 m. to 1 in.
7.89 m. to 1 in.
30 m.  to 1 in.
7.89 m. to 1 in.
17.75 m.  to 1 in.
4 m. to 1
4 m. to 1
m. to
m. to
m. to
m. to
m. to
m. to
m. to
3 m.
3 m. to
8 m. to
3 m. to
17.75 m. to
3 m. to
12 m. to
8 m. to
10 m. to
20 m
6,000 ft
to 1
to 1
to  1
to  1
2 m. to  1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
2 ni. to 1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
2 m. to 1 in.
m, to  1  in.
1 in.
1 in.
1 in.
1 in.
1 m. to 1 in.
%  m. to 1 in.
$1  00
$0 10
$10 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
2 00
f In course of compilation.
* Out of print.
In course of printing.
Note.—To avoid misunderstanding, applicants for maps are requested to state the " Map Number " of map
desired. Geo.
Report of the Surveyor-General.
L 29
Table E.—Departmental Reference Maps.
Price-list of Blue-prints.
1. West Coast, V.I.  (Barclay Sound, Southerly) Scale,
1a. West Coast, V.I. (Barclay Sound, Northerly)	
2. West Coast, V.I.  (Nootka District)   	
2a. West Coast, V.I. (Rupert District, South-west Portion) . .
3. Belize and Seymour Inlets	
3a. Quatsino Sound and North-west Portion of Rupert District
3b. Gilford, Cracroft, and Broughton Islands  	
3c. Nimpkish River Valley and Lake .'	
4. Knight, Bute, and Toba Inlets  	
4a.  Sayward District	
5. Texada Island and West Portion, N.W.D	
5a. Jervis and Sechelt Inlets 	
5b. Howe Sound and Cheakamus River Valley  	
5c. Harrison Lake and Lillooet River Valley 	
6a. Nicola District 	
6b. Princeton and Vicinity   	
6c. Ashnola and South Similkameen River Valleys	
7.    North Okanagan  (Osoyoos District)   	
7a. South Okanagan and Kettle River Valley  	
7b.  Similkameen  District   (Keremeos,  Fairview,  and  Greenwood )
11. Clearwater and Murtle River Valleys 	
11a. North Thompson River Valley   	
12. Dean and Burke Channels and Rivers Inlet  Scale,
12a. Bella Coola Valley   Scale,
14. Banks and Pitt Islands and Vicinity         „
14b. Gardner Canal and Vicinity  Scale,
15. Moresby Island, Northern Portion  Scale,
15a. Moresby Island, Southern Portion   Scale,
16. Graham Island, North-east Portion   Scale,
16a. Graham Island, South-east Portion 	
16b. Graham Island, West Portion  	
17. Portland Canal and Observatory Inlet  	
17a. Skeena River Valley (Mosquito Creek to Kispiox River)
17b. Nass and Kitwancool River Valleys  	
18a. Tete Jaune Cache and Upper Fraser River Valley	
19. Lower Skeena and Zymoetz River Valleys 	
19a. Skeena and Kitsumgallum River Valleys 	
19b. Prince Rupert, Mouth of Skeena and Nass Rivers	
20. Bulkley River Valley  (Hazelton to Moricetown)   	
21a. Fraser Lake and Nechako Valley  	
21b. Francois and Ootsa Lakes	
21c. Douglas Channel and Kildala Arm  	
22. Bowron River and Upper Fraser River Valley	
22a. Fort George and Vicinity  	
22b. Portion of Nechako River Valley and Cluculz Lake	
22c. Blackwater and Mud River Valleys  	
22d. Fraser River Valley, Vicinity of Quesnel  	
22e. Goat River and Upper Fraser River Valleys	
23. Quesnel Lake (East Arm)   Scale,
23a. 150-Mile House, Barkerville and Quesnel Lake Scale,
24a. Anderson and Seton Lakes, Lillooet District	
24b. Lillooet District   (Clinton,  Big Bar,  and  Bridge  River
25. Mainland Coast, Hecate Island to Princess Royal Island
26. Porcher and Adjacent Islands	
27. Fraser River Valley   (Williams Lake,  Soda Creek,  and
27a. Fraser and Chilcotin River Valleys, Dog Creek	
27b. Lac la Hache and Northern Lillooet	
28. North Part of Babine and Takia Lakes  Scale,
28a. Stuart and Babine Lakes   Scale,
29. Chilcotin, West 124th Meridian         „
29a. Anaham and Abuntlet Lakes       „
29b. Nazko and Chilcotin River Valleys       „
30. Bonaparte River Valley and Canim Lake      ,.
31. Bulkley Valley 	
1  inch to 1 mile.
.$1 00
% inch to 1 mile.
1   inch to 1 mile.
% inch to 1 mile.
1  inch to 1 mile.
V2 inch to 1 mile.
1  inch to 1 mile.
% inch to 1 mile.
1  inch to 1 mile.
% inch to 1 mile.
1  inch to 1 mile.
1 00
1 00
1 00
50 L 30
Report of the Minister of Lands.
Table E.—Departmental Reference Maps—Concluded.
Price List of Blue-prints—Concluded.
31a. Francois and Babine Lakes   Scale,
32a. Tatlayoko Lake       „
32b. Homathko and Klinaklini River Valleys	
34. Lot  4593,  Kootenay  District,  West Portion,  Flathead Scale,
34a. Lot  4593,   Kootenay  District,  East  Portion,  Flathead „
35. Saltspring, Gabriola, and Adjacent Islands   Scale,
38a. Groundhog Coal Area, East of Meridian  „
38b. Groundhog Coal Area, West of Meridian  ,,
38c. Upper Nass River Valley  „
39. Euchiniko Lake and Upper Blackwater River Valley. ...     „
40. Tetachuck and Euchu Lakes        „
42. Big Bend, Kootenay District  „
42a. Adams Lake and River   ,,
42b. Canoe River Valley     „
42c. Columbia River Valley (Vicinity of Bush River)  „
43. Peace River, South of Dominion Government Reserve... „
45. Foreshore of Vancouver Island  (E. & N. Railway Belt)     „
46. Saanich District and Islands        „
47. Peace   River   Valley,   West   of   Dominion    Government    „
48. Crooked and Parsnip River Valleys      „
49. Pine River Valley, Peace River District      „
50. Parsnip and Peace River Valleys       „
51. Finlay River Valley        „
52. Atlin Lake and Vicinity   Scale,
53. Telegraph Creek and Stikine River Valley        „
54. Upper Nass River Valley and Meziadin Lake Scale,
18-9s. Rossland and Vicinity        „
17-9s. Nelson and Creston Vicinity         „
16-9s. Moyie River Valley         „
15-9s. Elko Vicinity        „
15-9N. Fernie and Crowsnest Vicinity        „
16-9n. Cranbrook and Kootenay River Valley ,
17-9N. Kaslo and Kootenay Lake ,
18-9n. Edgewood and Lower Arrow Lake       „
15-0.    Elk and White River Valleys    ,
21-23.    Duncan Lake and Columbia Lake    „
18-20.    Nakusp and Vicinity    „
27-29.    Columbia River Valley, Wilmer and Spillimacheen  „
30-32.    Trout and Upper Arrow Lakes    „
1 inch to 1 mile $1 50
, 1 50
 1 50
2 inches to 1 mile   1 00
1   inch to 1 mile.
% in
1   in
ch to 1
ch to 1
1 00
Note.—These reference maps show lands alienated and applied for, " Timber Limits," " Coal Licences,"
etc.. surveyed and unsurveved. They are compiled from all available data and are constantly being amended,
and their accuracy is therefore not guaranteed. They were prepared originally for Departmental use, and,
having proved of value to the public, are now on sale. 7 Geo. 5 Finlay Forks and Peace River. L 31
By.F. Tupper.
November 29th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq..
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—Under your instructions dated June 10th, 1916, I have the honour to submit the
following report on the area surveyed by me in the Finlay and Peace River Valleys during
the past season :—
I left Fort George on June 22nd, and reached Summit Lake via Giscome Portage the following day. Here I purchased two flat-bottomed boats and continued my journey via Summit Lake,
Crooked, Pack, and Parsnip Rivers, and reached my destination at Finlay Forks without mishap
on July 3rd. My first camp was on the Finlay River, about three miles above the junction of
the Finlay and Peace.
The area surveyed at Finlay Forks consisted of thirty-six pre-emptions, six Government
lots, and two forestry reserves, containing a total area of 8,573.4 acres. The lots are numbered
7459 to 7500, inclusive, and practically the whole area surveyed is very good land. Lots 7459 to
7468, inclusive, in the vicinity of Pete Toy's Bar, are exceptionally good, being lightly timbered
with poplar and willow, with considerable open patches in places covered with peavine, fire-
weed, etc.
Lots 7469 to 7475 are much more heavily timbered with spruce and cottonwood. This
timber, while not large (the biggest trees would not be more than 2 feet in diameter), is fairly
dense, and the cost of clearing would be somewhat heavy. The soil, however, is very good,
being mostly a dark loam with a clay subsoil.
Lots 7476, 7477, and 7478 front on the Parsnip River. The two former are similar to the
aforementioned lots as regards soil, timber, etc. Portions of Lot 7476 are rather low-lying and
liable to flooding at extreme high water. Lot 7478 is partly open, having been swept by fire
some years ago, and consists largely of elevated benches covered with scattered dead stumps,
with a growth of peavine and flreweed in places. The soil is of good quality throughout. On
the east side of the Parsnip and Peace Rivers the land is much steeper and the soil is not quite
so good. The land rises somewhat abruptly from the river; the back portion of the lots
consist of fairly flat bench land, the greater part of which has been swept by fire in recent
years.    On the slope facing the river there is a dense growth of wild raspberries in places.
On the north side of the Finlay and in the fork of the Finlay and Peace lie Lots 7490 to
7500, inclusive. These lots are for the most part somewhat heavily timbered with spruce, cotton-
wood, poplar, etc. The soil is very good and the land is fairly flat throughout, with the
exception of the northern portion of Lots 7495, 7496, 7499, and 7500, which rise abruptly on to
an elevated bench.
In addition to the area surveyed at Finlay Forks, I also surveyed a number of pre-emptions
at various points along the Peace River between Finlay Forks and Hudson Hope. These
pre-emptions are located as follows: One at the mouth of the Carbon River, eight at a point
known as Bran-ham's Flat, one at Twenty-mile Creek, four at Twelve-mile Creek, and one
adjoining the west boundary of the Dominion Block near Hudson Hope. These pre-emptions
are all in the Peace River District and are numbered as Lots 1509 to 1523, inclusive, and contain
an area of 2,395 acres. There is very little good land along this part of the Peace River, which
is the passage of the river through the Rocky Mountains.
These lots consist of small areas of flat land along the river, and are held by trappers who
ply their calling along the river and tributaries during the winter months, and in the spring
and summer grow sufficient vegetables, etc., for their own use. There is not sufficient good land
at any point to make anything in the way of a settlement worthy of the name.
Agricultural Possibilities.
As regards the agricultural possibilities of the land surveyed, I think that the land around
Finlay Forks is very suitable for agricultural purposes. There is a large tract of really good
land there, besides the area surveyed, and in my opinion there is room for a large settlement. L 32 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
The largest stretch of good country extends northwards from Finlay Forks along the Finlay
and westward to the foot-hills of the Wolverine Mountains, a distance which is said to be from
fifteen to twenty miles. It is timbered with spruce, cottonwood, poplar, etc. Where the spruce
occurs the cost of clearing would be somewhat heavy, but there are stretches where only poplar
and willow occur, with open patches of peavine, etc. In such cases the cost of clearing would
be very light.
The country is fairly well watered, apart from the main river, by the Manson Creek and
tributaries and several small lakes. Good stock-water can be obtained in numerous sloughs
and swamps, while for domestic purposes, in localities not touched by creeks, a good supply
should, I think, be obtainable at a shallow depth by sinking wells.
At Finlay Forks, on many of the pre-emptions, vegetables, such as potatoes, turnips, onions,
lettuce, rhubarb, etc., of very fine quality are being successfully grown, but as most of the
settlers have only been there about three or four years, cultivation up to date has been on a
very small scale. As there is no market available at the present time, the settlers are only
growing sufficient for their own use. As far as the soil is concerned, I am convinced that the
country is eminently adapted for the growth of all kinds of root-crops, and I think oats and
barley would probably do well. Hogs, stock-raising, and dairying should also in time be very
Although the country round Finlay Forks is, in my opinion, so suitable for settlement,
cultivation on a large scale is not likely to be attempted without railway communication. At the
present time the district is most inaccessible. The only way in which the settlers can get in
supplies is by boat or canoe from Giscome Portage down the Crooked, Pack, and Parsnip, a
distance of about 200 miles, or else from Hudson Hope, which means poling or lining boats
against a strong current and several portages round rapids, etc., for about 100 miles. I understand that a railway has been projected through this country by either the Pacific Great Eastern
or the Thomas Company, and should this line be constructed in the near future, considerable
settlement can be looked for in the vicinity of Finlay Forks, but without railway transportation
I am afraid that farming will not prove a profitable industry in these parts.
What would be a great boon to the settlers at the present time would be a pack-trail from
Finlay Forks to Hudson Hope. There is already a good trail from Hudson Hope as far as the
.junction of the Carbon River, and I think it would not be a very costly matter to extend this
to Finlay Forks. With this trail settlers could then get their mail and supplies from Hudson
Hope at a much cheaper rate than it now costs them from Fort George.
The settlers all speak very highly of the climate, but no records have been kept as to
snowfall, rain, etc., but I am told that the average rainfall is about 15 inches. The summer
season is rather short, but the days are long and very warm. Summer frost appears to be one
of the great drawbacks. We had a very severe frost in August, which did considerable damage
to the vegetable-crops, but on comparing the dates I found that this frost visitation occurred on
the same days as the severe frost experienced in the Prairie Provinces, and which played such
havoc with the grain-crops there; so possibly the climate in this respect may be no worse than
the Prairies, and it is the belief of the settlers that this frost will, to a large extent, disappear
with settlement.
The timber round Finlay Forks and along the Peace River consists of spruce, poplar, cottonwood, and a little pine in places. Spruce is the only timber suitable for the building of cabins,
fences, etc., and for which there is a plentiful supply. There is an abundant supply of the other
varieties for fuel.
Game, I regret to say, is exceedingly scarce; a few black bear, an occasional grouse, and
rabbit are about all I saw during the whole summer. Fish, however, is very plentiful in the
rivers and smaller streams. Rainbow, Dolly Varden, Arctic trout, and grayling were the
principal varieties and were easily caught. 7 Geo. 5
Finlay Forks.
L 33
In conclusion, I would repeat that there is a large area of good land at and in the vicinity
of Finlay Forks, which, provided the climatic conditions, about which very little apparently is
known, prove favourable, and that railway communication is established, is eminently suitable
for a large settlement, and is, in my opinion,''well worthy of development.
I have, etc.,
Frank Tupper, B.C.L.S.
By A. Wright.
December 10th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report that I have completed surveys under instructions dated
July 19th, 1916, in the neighbourhood of Finlay Forks, Cariboo District, and lying between that
and the Rocky Mountains.
This area partakes of the same general characteristics as the Lower Parsnip and Finlay
River Valleys, consisting of level benches, originally timber but burnt over some years ago and
now covered with poplar and willow, with occasional patches of small spruce and pine. The
soil is generally a sandy loam, clayey in places, with a subsoil of gravel.
The climate is dry, there being less rain and snow fall than in the surrounding districts.
Little farming has been done up to the present, and 50 per cent, of the original settlers have
either enlisted or left the district.
Potatoes and all other garden-truck have, however, been successfully grown for several
years, although, in common with the rest of the country,, the potato-crop was a small one this
year owing to want of rain in the early summer and heavy frosts later. Summer frosts,
however, are rather the exception than otherwise.
From about six miles below the head of the Peace River to the Ottertail River, thirty-eight
miles, there is practically no agricultural land, the mountains rising abruptly from the river
to a height of 7,000 to 8,000 feet. There are small patches of good land at the mouth of the
Wicked and Barnard Rivers.
There is good spruce scattered along the mountain-sides and in the neighbourhood of the
Clearwater and Ottertail Rivers.
Below the Ottertail River the valley widens, and there are strips of good land on either side
of the river, generally covered with light poplar. On the north side the hills, rising 2,000 feet
above the river, are nearly bare of timber and would make fine grazing land.
There is no doubt that the absence of means of access, except in summer, by river, has up
to the present prevented the development of the country, and trails, especially from Hudson
Hope to Finlay Forks, are very badly needed.
I have, etc.,
Alleyne Wright, B.C.L.S. L 34 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
November 13th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report of my season's work in the vicinity
of Eaglet Lake, Cariboo District:—
The area surveyed consists of two parcels, one lying to the north of Eaglet Lake and the
other to the south.
Physical Features.
The parcel north of the lake is about two miles and a half distant and 400 feet higher than
the lake itself, and lies at an elevation of about 2,300 feet. Immediately north of this tract is
Eagle Mountain, which has an elevation of about 3,100 feet. It is chiefly a rolling country,
with a general slope to the south. There are numerous small creek-beds which undoubtedly
carry water during the spring and early summer, but we only encountered three with running
water at the time of survey.
The parcel to the south of the lake is about one mile and a half distant from the lake. It
is more broken than the northern parcel and is more heavily timbered.
' Means of Access.
The Grand Trunk Pacific Railway runs along the south side of Eaglet Lake, which gives the
intending settler easy access to the land. During the season a horse-trail was built from Giscome
Station through the centre of the northern block. A wagon-road has also been started from the
western end of Eaglet Lake with the intention of penetrating this block, but at the present only
about two miles of this has been completed.
On the south side of the lake a wagon-road has been built from Giscome Station to the block
surveyed.   There is also a trail running from a point east of Giscome to this block.
A start has been made towards the establishment of a lumber business at Giscome Station.
A large mill is being erected, and only the shortage of labour prevents the employment of a
large number of men at this point. As it is there are about fifty men employed, and the milling
company are advertising for a hundred more. Their limits adjoin the northerly block on the
west, and when these are logged a considerable area of good agricultural land will be available.
In this connection it might be pointed out that there is au excellent place for the development
of power at what is known as the little canyon on the Willow River. This lies about three miles
south of Giscome and will doubtless be utilized at no very distant date.
Nearest Town, etc.
The nearest town is Prince George. This, with the villages adjoining, has a population of
approximately 2,000. A town was started at Willow River, a point about seven miles west of
Giscome, but at present there are very few people living there. There is a store and a school
there, and the probabilities are that there will soon be the same at Giscome. There is a post-
office there at the present time.
In general, the soil is a clay loam or silt on a clay subsoil. There are numerous willow
and alder bottoms, particularly on the north side of the lake, and where these occur the soil is
a heavy black loam, very fertile and productive when the roots are removed. Ridges of gravel
and sand are found on the southern block, and to a lesser extent on the sections adjoining Eagle
Climatic Conditions.
Winter may be said to be of about six months' duration. Snow usually falls about November
1st and remains from that time until about May.    During this period there is a heavy snowfall 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Vanderhoof. L 35
averaging about 4 feet. There is also a period of intense cold usually lasting from ten to fourteen
days. Otherwise the winter climate is a desirable one. The days are bright and crisp, with
frosty nights. During the spring and early summer there is an abundant rainfall. August and
September are usually fine. This year there were three days in August on which rain fell,
while September had nine. This is more than the average for September, but, ou the whole,
farmers have ample time in which to harvest their crops. Frosts came somewhat earlier this
year than ordinarily, and were more severe. First frost was noticed on September 9th. This
damaged the potatoes, and in some places the wheat and oats. But usually these crops are
matured without suffering from frost.
On the northerly tract there is no merchantable timber. Scrub spruce and balsam predominate, with considerable poplar and birch. This might be valuable as pulp-wood if there was
a mill within a reasonable distance. Cost of clearing under present conditions would run from
$75 to $100 per acre.
On the southern block there is some merchantable timber, chiefly spruce, with scattered
clumps of fir running up to 4 feet in diameter.
Moose are quite plentiful in this region, several having been killed by hunters during the
season. There are also a few deer, but they do not appear to be very numerous. Among the
fur-bearing animals found in this vicinity are beaver, marten, mink, otter, fisher, and lynx.
These, however, have been almost entirely trapped out, particularly the beaver.
Eaglet Lake is well stocked with trout, and good catches are sometimes made in Willow
River also; but except in periods of extreme low water, this stream is usually too muddy to
permit of successful fishing.
I have, etc.,
F. P. Burden, B.C.L.S.
By H. C. Black.
December 4th, 1916.
G. H. Daicson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—My season's work lying between Vanderhoof and Bednesti to the south of the Grand
Trunk Pacific Railway, I outfitted at Vanderhoof and commenced work at Beaver Dam, about
twenty-four miles distant, near the south-west end of Cluculz Lake and on the Quesnel Road,
which, coming from Fort Fraser, joins the Vanderhoof Road at Sinkut Lake. The road is good,
and so far it is all through surveyed land. A branch road starts from here and connects with
the Vanderhoof-Fort George Road and Hulatt, where there is a small store and post-office. The
grades on this road are good, but it still requires stumping. The distance to Hulatt is about
twelve miles. The nearest post-office to Beaver Dam is Mapes, about nine miles westerly on the
Quesnel Road. The Dominion Government Telegraph Line follows the Quesnel Road closely,
the nearest offices being at Tachick and Naltesby Lakes.
The country through which the road passes from Beaver Dam to Naltesby Lake is timbered
with small jack-pine, with a strip of fir coming in at Eulatazella Lake. This pine country is
dotted over with small meadows and swamps. Many of these swamps are dry In summer, but
have a spongy surface covered with " birch brush."    The soil is mainly a stony silt.
From Eulatazella Lake I moved north along Norman's Road, which is, however, more of a
pack-trail than a road and has been mainly used in the winter to Cluculz Lake. The country
to the south of Cluculz Lake is similar to that along the Quesnel Road, but is flatter. From
here I moved to Bednesti Lake, sending the horses round by Norman's Road and the west end
of Cluculz Lake to the north shore, where they picked up the camp outfit. There is a trail
from the north shore, at about the middle point, to the Fort George Road, which the horses L 36 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
followed to a road turning off to the west end of Bednesti Lake. The rest of the party went
up Cluculz Lake -to the east end by boats and then by the Stony Creek Trail, which is open
here, though closed along the lake by windfalls. From here to the east end of the lake we
took the horses along the Stony Creek Trail, which is in good order and follows along a
series of steep gravel ridges enclosing small basins, which were once apparently ponds, but now
meadows or swamp's. They are of little value as they are small, and some of them could not-
be drained, being entirely surrounded by the ridges. These ridges continue till the trail joins
the main road. From the junction easterly the country is timbered with jack-pine, with little
or no undergrowth. To the west of the junction a road branches off to the railway at Nichol,
where a post-office was established in September. This road, though still unstumped, has a good
grade down to the river, though the country on either side drops somewhat suddenly. On
descending to the river the jack-pine gives way more and more to spruce, poplar, and birch.
The soil in this locality is mainly silt.
Various trout, some of large size, are abundant in both Cluculz and Bednesti Lakes, though
perhaps the latter is the better in this respect, and brook-trout are numerous in Tachintelachick
Creek. Grouse were scarce this year, though said to be plentiful as a rule. Deer and moose are
seemingly fairly numerous by the number of tracks seen. Rabbits have dropped, in the last two
years, from a superabundance to a scarcity, and the coyotes are visibly suffering from the want
of their usual food.
The climatic conditions this year were not good, a dry spring being followed by summer
frosts. I found one settler, however, who was trying out apple-trees, and though this was their
first year they had escaped the frost. This may have been due to the land being high above
the river.
The water problem of unwatered land is being attended to by the Government boring plant.
Several boreholes have been put down this year north of Vanderhoof. One of them, completed
just before I left, was sunk 200 feet to tap the water, but the water then rose to within 13 feet
of the surface. The drilling rig, which is mounted on wheels so as to be easily moved from
place to place, is of the percussive type, the chisel being worked by means of a rope.
On completion of the work in the Nechako Valley I moved to the Buck River, leaving the
train at Houston. From Houston there is a wagon-road up the valley and on to Francois and
Ootsa Lakes. The Dominion Government have started to construct a telephone-line in connection with their telegraph-line. Connection has already been made between North Bulkley and
Houston, and the line is being taken up the Buck River to Francois and Ootsa Lakes to join
the telegraph-line again at Burns Lake. Settlers on the line will be able to have an instrument
installed on payment of a small rental.
The land surveyed lies along the river, which here runs from south-east to north-west.
The river-flats are about a quarter of a mile wide and covered with willow. On either side
the timber is mainly jack-pine, the soil being stony, though there is some sandy loam on the
left side. The climatic conditions appear to be very similar to those of the Bulkley and Nechako
These surveys completed my work and I returned to Prince Rupert on October 12th.
I have, etc.,
H. C. Black, B.C.L.S.
By R. W. Haggen.
October 31st, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—The surveys made by me for the Lands Department during the past season were
divided into three groups—the survey of certain pre-emptions and other lands in the Quesnel
Valley between Quesnel and Gravel Creek, traverses to tie in various surveys between Beaver-
mouth and Quesnel Lake, and the survey of certain pre-emptions in the vicinity of Soda Creek. 7 Geo. 5 Quesnel Valley and McLeese Lake. L 37
Between the lower canyon on Quesnel River, ten miles from Quesnel, and Twenty-six-mile
Creek, I surveyed 2,063 acres of land, divided into fourteen parcels, seven of which are held
under pre-emption record. The remaining parcels are all suitable for settlement. Eight miles
of tie-line was also run.
An extension of an existing road built some years ago to placer mines three miles above
the canyon has been made to the north boundary of Lot 8709; from this point to Twenty-six-mile
Creek there is a good pack-trail. The Quesnel-Hydraulic Road, which is now completed, is also
used as a means of communication from Twenty-six-mile Creek, the river being crossed by canoe.
This saves nine miles of distance, and it is to be hoped that a ferry will be put in in the early
The only agricultural land in the Quesnel Valley consists of benches at varying heights
above the river; the entire valley has been burned over and denuded of a cedar forest, in the
place of which brush and second growth has come up. In many places this growth is light, and
land-clearing is not expensive, costing from $10 to $30 per acre. The soil on the benches is a
deep loam. Irrigation, while it ensures a crop, is not, as a rule, necessary; there are a number
of creeks in the valley which provide water for nearly all the benches. This year, which was
exceptionally dry, did not spoil the grain or vegetable crops in the Quesnel Valley; Gerimi
Gravel, who has a ranch at Twenty-six-mile Creek, had oats standing 6 feet high, and his
vegetables also did well. There are no hay-crops in the valley, the settlers feeding straw or
oat-hay to their stock.
Mr. Gravel has 50 acres under crop, and now has a flock of 450 sheep, which do well and
show a good increase each year. He also has cattle and hogs. This is the only pre-emption
in this part of the valley which is worked to any extent; on the other places a few acres only
are cultivated, sufficient to supply the vegetables for the settler and to grow enough feed to
winter a couple of horses. These pre-emptors have to depend on outside work for their grubstake ; they have not stocked their pre-emptions, and, if there was a market for grain and
vegetables, they would in every case have to bring considerable extra land under cultivation
before enough crop could be raised to support them.
The land in this valley will always be between sixteen and twenty miles from the railway,
and probably the only branches of agriculture that will be profitable will be hog and sheep
raising, for which the valley seems well adapted. The one drawback is the coyote pest; this
necessitates the expense of constantly herding the flocks.
After these surveys were made I moved to Beavermouth, fourteen miles farther up the
valley. Here I surveyed one pre-emption which lies on a bench on the east side of the Quesnel
River, opposite the mouth of the Beaver. This bench is similar to that heretofore described,
and the settler, Frank Cannon, has made considerable improvements on the place.
I then started a traverse of the Quesnel Forks Road and tied in various scattered lots; 49.75
miles of road and trail were traversed. From Beavermouth to Hydraulic Camp the road for
the first six miles follows along benches; the remaining six miles are hilly. There is no agricultural land along this portion of the valley. However, it has attracted the attention of mining
men during the last half-century, and every little creek shows signs of old workings; the small
amount of work done and the old machinery also bears witness that the claims have not been
At Birrel (Twenty-mile) Creek the Quesnelle Hydraulic Gold Mining Company operates.
In 1909 this company established the Hydraulic Camp and built a very expensive ditch from
Swift River, a branch of the Cottonwood. With the amount of head thus available gravel could
be handled very cheaply. However, the first clean-ups were a distinct disappointment, and the
claim has not been operated for several years. During the past season K. C. Laylander, engineer
for the company, has been doing experimental work on the ground, and the results of this have
been such as to warrant the resumption of mining next year. A private telephone-line from
Quesnel Forks has been built to Hydraulic, also connecting to Quesnel Dam, Bullion, Little Lake,
and Seven-mile (Morehead). A ferry across Quesnel River has also been built by the company.
I am indebted to Mr. Laylander for plans showing the country between Hydraulic and Swift
From Hydraulic the road follows close to the Quesnel River to the mouth of Morehead
Creek, Lot 8329. Here there is a nice ranch run by Mr. Stephenson, who raises crops of good
quality.    At this point is located the old Morehead dredge, a large dredge with a small dipper, L 38 Report of the Minister of LoYnds. 1911
which was built a few years ago to use in the channel of the Quesnel. It worked a little last
season, but did nothing this year. About a mile up Morehead Creek is the Morehead Hydraulic
Mine, also closed down at the present time. This mine would appear to carry good values, but
is badly handicapped by lack of water. The natural water-supply is from a storage on Morehead
Lake, but the right to this goes with the Bullion Mine.
From the mouth of Morehead Creek it is only about six miles by the Quesnel Valley to
Quesnel Forks, but the valley is rough, and the road follows up the valleys of Morehead and
Little Lake Creeks until it joins the main road to Quesnel Forks from 150-Mile House at Lot 394,
where the Hydraulic Post-office is situate. At this point S. C. Prior has a hay ranch and store.
Mr. Prior has for a number of years traded and packed in this section, and to him I am indebted
for considerable information as to topographical features at more remote points in the district.
From Lot 394 I made a traverse of the main road westerly to the dam at the foot of
Morehead Lake. This is a " made" lake, the water being penned back over a considerable
area of fairly level land, and it is two miles and a half long by half a mile wide. The dam
was put in to conserve water for the Bullion Mine a number of years ago, and a large ditch
with considerable fluming was made to the mine. Along the road from Lot 394 the country
has been burnt off and fairly dense brush has grown. Near Lot 394 there is a rank growth
of clover in the timber, and this is cut for hay.
The road from Lot 394 to Quesnel Forks was next traversed and the lots at the Bullion
Mine tied in. The Bullion Camp, which lies about three miles from Lot 394, is the most
up-to-date mining camp, in so far as buildings are concerned, that it has been my privilege to
see in the Province. The buildings are large, well-built, and numerous. The mine ranked among
the foremost producers of the Province some fifteen years ago, when under the management of
the late J. B. Hobson. There is a tremendous yardage of cement and gravel on the hill to the
west of Quesnel River, and it is reputed to yield from 6 to 8 cents per yard. I am informed
that the shipments have totalled $1,600,000, but unfortunately, the expenses exceeded this sum.
The mine was subsequently disposed of to the Guggenheims, who dropped it, and it has latterly
been the subject of a dispute as to ownership. There was never enough water available from
the sources used—Morehead, Bootjack, and Polley Lakes—to work the mine to its full capacity,
and a start was made on a big ditch from Spanish Creek. While this ditch was under construction the mine was closed down. However, as it is a mine of considerable value, it is by no means
improbable that it will be reoperated in the future.
Two miles below Bullion F. J. Whitmarsh is doing prospecting, and has anthracite coal and
also silver. However, I do not know whether the latter is of commercial value, as the investigation of the amount available is not yet far enough advanced to form an opinion. Anthracite coal
is only of use for a local market should one develop in the future. I have no knowledge as to
the dimensions of the seam.
Descending a steep hill, the road crosses the South Fork of Quesnel River and enters the
townsite of Quesnel Forks. This Village is beautifully situated on a flat at the mouth of the
North Fork, and was, some years ago, a town of some importance. There were good stores
and a couple of hotels, while the Government office was also located here. Fires have destroyed
the best buildings; there are no hotels, and three white men are now resident in the town. There
is a store, post and telegraph office. The traveller must carry his own blankets if he would stay
in the town; but the Ritz Cafe, operated by a Celestial named Herr Tom, is established to supply
the wants of the inner man. The pretentious sign announces that " Ici on parle Francais " and
also " Mann spracht Deutsch," but, as far as I could ascertain, Chinese and " pigeon " English
are the only tongues the would-be linguist has mastered. There are .several Chinese at the
Forks who make a living by washing gold along the Quesnel River, and they also operate a
pack-train to Keithley, eighteen miles distant, on Cariboo Lake.
On the opposite side of the North Fork Mr. Lowden has a small ranch on which he grows
hay and produce for the limited local market. From near his ranch a trail is reached; this runs
from the old bridge near Kangaroo Creek to the old Maud Mine, at Four-mile Creek. However,
the Maud was not a producer, and no work has been done there for a number of years.
The road to Keithley Creek has been completed as a sleigh-road during the past season.
For the first four miles it follows the south bank of the North Fork, then crosses and runs in
an east-north-east direction to Cariboo Lake, following along the north shore of the lake to
Keithley Creek.   At Keithley Creek there is the only mine really in operation in this section 7 Geo. 5 Quesnel Valley and McLeese Lake. L 39
of the country. Mr. Harrison, the owner, has found coarse gold in the old channel, and has
made sufficiently heavy shipments during the season to leave a good margin over and above
the operating expenses. Considerable prospecting is being done in the vicinity and on French
Snowshoe Creek. Robert Borland, a well-known old-timer of the Cariboo, who was for a
number of years a resident at 150-Mile House and Williams Lake, conducts a ranch, store, and
post-office at Keithley, and there is a weekly mail service from the 150-Mile House, pack-horses
being used from Quesnel Forks.
Six miles from Quesnel Forks the Keithley Road leaves the vicinity of the North Fork, and
here branches the old trail to Keithley Point, where the North Fork bends. From Cariboo Lake
to this point the course is southerly, but from here to Quesnel Forks it is westerly. I traversed
this trail for three miles, tying in two pre-emptions and Lot 218, the old Keithley Point Hydraulic
Claim, which has not operated for a number of years. At this lot there was an old bridge to
which a trail ran from Quesnel Lake via Coquette Pass; this bridge has, however, been washed
out.    Spanish Creek enters the North Fork near Keithley Point.
The final traverse made in the locality was from Quesnel Forks to the dam at the mouth
of Quesnel Lake. This traverse follows a road which runs along the north side of the South
Fork of Quesnel River. The country here is very rough and of no great value. However, there
has been mining done at Rose Gulch, three miles from the Forks, and also near Lot 392.
The dam is a nice piece of work. It was built in an arc across the old channel of the river
at the foot of the lake, and the water was diverted into a runway to the north of the old
channel; here, are the gates, and through them and down the runway the river runs furiously.
I believe that the object in erecting the dam was to enable the water to be shut off from the
main channel of the South Fork, so that the gold in the river-bottom might be easily gathered.
However, in previous years a number of old-time miners and Chinese had wing-dammed the
channel and got gold that way, and the company operations were not a success.
A bridge has been built at the dam, and from here a road runs westerly, joining the main
road from the Forks to 150-Mile House near Bullion. A road also runs to Spanish Lake. On
this road are two steam-shovels which were used on the construction of the projected ditch from
Spanish Lake to Bullion.
Quesnel Lake is a magnificent body of water, flanked by high hills and seventy miles in
length. It heads near the Clearwater Valley, there being only a low divide between. On Quesnel
Lake and on the North Fork of Quesnel River there is a good forest of cedar which will ultimately
be logged, provided it does not fall a prey to fire.
Having completed the work in this locality, I moved to McLeese Lake, seven miles from
Soda Creek, in which locality I surveyed fifteen parcels of land; thirteen of these were held
under pre-emption record, and the remaining two are under reserve, one being the Soda Creek
school-site.    These comprise 2,063 acres.
The lots near McLeese Lake are easily accessible by road from Soda Creek, with the exception
of Lot 9171, which lies on a nice flat on the summit of the plateau, and is reached by a rough
road from Peavine Valley. This lot contains a large percentage of good land, but there is no
water.    Irrigation is unnecessary for raising grain and vegetables In the locality.
The other lots do not contain any great amount of good land, consisting of small flats and
steep hillside. They are all of some use, however, and, if a market were available, could afford
a living to a settler. Practically all the pre-emptors from this locality have enlisted, and the
names of a number have appeared in the Roll of Honour.
Lot 9170 was surveyed to include a pre-emption on the head of Cuisson Creek, where the
settler, Alford Pierce, has done a great deal of work and has a very nice-looking ranch. Crops
in this locality were a disappointment this season, where there was no water available for irrigation, as the spring was backward, dry, and cold. Heavy rains in July brought on the crops
which had been planted late, but the early crops were a total failure; in some cases the potato-
crop, usually good, was only 10 per cent, of the normal crop. The frost also caused trouble in
some cases, coining a full month earlier than usual and ruining the wheat in some localities.
Climatically it has been the worst season I have seen in the district, and I am quite ready to
believe the assertion of some old residents who class it as the worst season ever known. This
condition extended along the Fraser Valley, while the Quesnel Valley was immune. Such a
season is, fortunately, quite exceptional. L 40 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
Another point forcibly impressed on me was the great shortage of game. No deer were seen
during the season and very few grouse. Coyotes are numerous, but a number seen were in bad
condition, thin, and suffering with bad mange. An athlete could almost run them down. Bear
are numerous in the Quesnel Valley and were seen nearly every day. In the Quesnel River,
below the dam, there is good trout-fishing. A few trappers on Quesnel Lake have had good luck
catching fur in the winter.     ,
Pending the construction of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, the progress of the Cariboo
District is suspended. There is no market, except a small local one, for anything except beef
and wool. The former can walk to the railway; the latter is at present bringing a high enough
price to enable the high freight charged on the Cariboo Road to be paid and still leave a profit.
I have, etc.,
R. W. Haggen, B.C.L.S., D.L.S.
By A. F. Cotton.
December Sth, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on my season's operations in the
Lillooet District:—
I began work at the 100-Mile House, on the Cariboo Road. I surveyed some sixteen preemptions in the valleys of Bridge Creek and Little Bridge Creek. The country is mostly rolling,
timbered with spruce, pine, and poplar, with some nice fir on the higher elevations. The soil is
excellent and produces good crops. Potatoes, oats, and garden-truck were very plentiful on the
different pre-emptions surveyed by me, and with the advance of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway this section will undoubtedly come to the front as a market-garden. There are quite a few
open patches and the bush land is not hard to clear.
The Pacific Great Eastern Railway runs through the valleys of above-named creeks, and a
station is to be located about two miles from the 100-Mile House, which will bring this section
within easy reach of the Coast cities. Looking up the valley of Little Bridge Creek from the
Cariboo Road, there is to be seen a view that cannot be excelled. It is about one mile and a
half wide, with low sloping hills, timbered with a light growth of pine and poplar, the low land
being mostly meadow.
In a very few years there will be quite a settlement here, as the good land extends along the
valley for quite a distance both up and down from the Cariboo Road. There is a good prospect
of a village springing up near the proposed station, and a nicer location would be hard to find.
On Lot 32, through which Bridge Creek runs, there Is a water-power that could be made to
furnish ample power for domestic purposes for quite a settlement. There is a sawmill located
there at present, but the method of utilizing the power is very primitive.
After completing the surveys in the Bridge Creek Valleys I proceeded to Lac la Hache,
where I surveyed the islands in the lake.
Lac la Hache is a beautiful sheet of water about 13 miles long and from one-half to two
miles wide. The Cariboo Road runs along the east shore and the Pacific Great Eastern along
the west. As soon as the railway is finished this lake, will become quite a summer resort. It
abounds in fish.
Game was very scarce not only in this section, but all over the district. Coyotes were very
plentiful, which I think accounts for the scarcity of game.
I have, etc.,
A. F. Cotton, B.C.L.S. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Sheridan Lake, Lillooet District. L 41
By W. S. Drewry.
December 29th, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report completion of operations under your instructions dated
June 12th, 1916.
Work accomplished.
The work accomplished comprised an inspection of two lots east of Bridge Lake, the survey
of a school lot at Roe Lake, and the subdivision of some 20,600 acres of land west of Sheridan
Lake, north of the easterly part of Green Lake; its westerly limit being about three miles east
of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, adjoining lands surveyed in 1914 on which there has been
considerable settlement.
Character of Land.
The greater part of the land subdivided is lightly wooded with small poplar and pine, a few
fir trees being found on low ridges with easy slopes. The tract is a gently rolling plateau of
clay loam, with humus varying from 2 to 18 inches in depth, covered nearly everywhere by a
luxuriant growth of grasses and plants, such as vetch, lupin, etc., affording splendid summer
pasturage for various kinds of stock. There are many prairie openings of from 1 to 10 or more
acres in extent. The poplar-flats along the shore of Sheridan Lake offer exceptionally choice
locations for homesteads, as to soil, timber, water, and beauty of situation. The shores of the
lake are gravelly, affording secure access to the water, which is of excellent quality.
The whole area is fairly well watered by springs, creeks, and lakes, generally bordered by
meadows, some of them of considerable extent, being capable of supplying sufficient hay to winter
from twenty to 150 head of cattle on each meadow. A few appeared to be wet owing to beaver-
dams, but nearly all seem susceptible to easy drainage.
Drainage. ,
With the exception of its most northerly and easterly portions draining to Fawn Creek or
Sheridan Lake, the country is unwatered by Watch Creek, which, after expanding into Watch
Lake, about three miles long by half a mile wide, flows into Green Lake near the south-westerly
angle of the lands surveyed. While Green Lake water is slightly alkaline and unpleasant to
the palate, all other water encountered was free from alkali, and most of it good potable water
fit for human use.
Settlement has extended into the lands about Watch Lake and north of it, as well as west
of Sheridan Lake, and there is little doubt that much of these really excellent lands would soon
be occupied if they were made accessible by a trunk road.
The tract may be reached at present from 70-Mile House, on the Cariboo Road, by way of
North Bonaparte Road to Green Lake; thence along Green Lake Road to Watch Lake; and
thence north-easterly, passing Watch Lake, to Lot 1918, where the main road ends. Some
hay-roads have been cut by settlers and pack-trails opened out for survey purposes; but the
greater part of the land in question is not at present easily accessible by wagons.
Proposed Road.
The construction and operation of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway will greatly alter the
transportation problem of all that section of country, because merchandise or produce which
formerly would have left or reached the rail at Asheroft will now no doubt be handled by the L 42
Report of the Minister of Lands.
railway to or at points more convenient to the settlers. A station for operating purposes will
almost certainly be placed at the Horse Lake Summit, which can be more easily reached than
any other point on the railway by nearly all the considerable number of settlers in Bridge Creek
basin east and south of 100-Mile House. A road from Lac des Roches passing north of Bridge
Lake, crossing Bridge Creek on Lot 42S9, continuing almost directly west north of Sheridan
Lake, thence swinging lightly southerly to Lot 4467, and thence west to connect with a road
on Lot 4269, would reach' the railway on Lot 4039, about eight miles east of the Cariboo Road,
connected with by roads already constructed but requiring improvement.
The importance to residents, present and future, of properly locating a trunk road may be
seen from the following comparative table:—
To P.G.E. by
Present Roads.
To P.G.E. by
Proposed Road.
50 miles
36      „
22      „
26 miles.
Roe Lake P.O	
20      „        .
This proposed road would serve in opening up nearly 200,000 acres of good agricultural
land, which it is believed will eventually prove one of the best dairying and grazing sections of
British Columbia, and an important feeder to the Pacific Great Eastern Railway. It would also
assist in giving access to a very considerable amount of excellent summer range in the valleys
of the mountains west of the North Thompson River. The road would be generally level, with
easy gradients, and on ground favourable to economical construction.
Location of Trunk Roads.
The location of trunk roads involves the underlying principles of railway-location, the
objects being to serve the country traversed and to permit the moving of a maximum load at
a minimum operating cost. Railways being the main arteries of inland commerce, the trunk
roads are secondary arteries, from which vein systems of side-roads may be constructed as
settlement advances. It would therefore seem important that study be given to the proper
location of these trunk roads, since neglect in so doing may easily result in the holding-back
or failure of* naturally good districts and waste of money in road-construction.
Suitability of Land to Dairying and Grazing.
The area lying between the Cariboo Road and the mountains west of the North Thompson
River is, as a whole, primarily a dairying and grazing country, luxuriant summer pasture being
found throughout; while those engaged in cattle-raising consider 1 ton of hay per head of stock
ample provision for winter feeding. As the prices of dairy products and meats have risen
steadily for some years, it would seem that a country capable of producing them should secure
attention, especially as the lands are free to those willing to become residents.
Products of Land.
Wheat, oats, rye, and barley are grown successfully, but the last three are generally cut
green for fodder. Timothy grows splendidly, and clover has taken very well in several places
where it has been tried.   Root crops, such as turnips, beets, and carrots, appear to do well.
Garden products, such as cabbage, cauliflower, lettuce, radishes, onions, peas, potatoes, etc.,
also give fair results; although during the present season, owing to excessive humidity and
consequent coldness of the ground, summer frost in some places cut down potato-vines. The
locus of the garden seems to have much to do with frost effect. Those situated on the higher
lands do not appear to suffer to the extent of those placed in low positions.
Summer frost occurs only when the air is in a quiescent state; then the colder upper air
being heavier naturally seeks the gutters, the warmer air below rising to a stratum above.
Possibly this phenomenon is one of the factors entering into the curious local action of summer
frost. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Sheridan Lake, Lillooet District. L 43
Throughout the lands surveyed it did not appear that irrigation would be necessary for
the successful growing of crops, failures seemingly having been largely the result of insufficient
cultivation of the soil.
The snowfall is reported to be moderate and to occur generally after the beginning of
January, although light falls may take place between November 1st and that time. In some
years there are light summer frosts; but it seems quite probable that these will cease with
occupation and clearing of the land, as has been the case elsewhere. The seasons are of about
the same duration as in the Midland District of Ontario; but the nights are always cool in
summer, and the snowfall not so heavy in winter.
The summer climate is usually fine, and quick growth is made by vegetation. Although
quite low temperature is sometimes experienced in winter, it has not been found necessary to
house stock, the provision of winter feed required being about the same as in the foot-hill section
of Alberta.
Game and Wild Animals.
Very little game was observed during the season, although three years ago there seemed to
be an abundance. Deer were not plentiful, but the existence of mule-deer about the south-west
angle of Sheridan Lake was noticed. No bears were encountered, but signs of their presence
were observed frequently. While wolves appeared to be entirely absent, coyotes were quite
numerous and unusually bold.
Rabbits have almost disappeared, although quite numerous last year. This scarcity possibly
accounts for the boldness of coyotes, as they must be hard pressed for sustenance.
Ducks were rather scarce, and where easily reached were quickly reduced in numbers by
hunters using automobiles to flit from pond to pond.
Willow, Franklin, and sharp-tailed grouse appeared to have been almost exterminated.
While a severe winter and wet spring may have had some influence, the writer is of opinion
that the great increase in the number of horned owls and the disappearance of the rabbits
have been the preponderating influence.
Game Conservation.
The abolition of the bounty on horned owls has resulted in their multiplying enormously.
They lived largely on rabbits, which were easier to catch than the game birds; but upon the
exit of the rabbit the owls have been forced to hunt other food, the game birds suffering much,
more extensively than formerly.
A similar situation exists in regard to coyotes; so that, adding to the above conditions the
necessity of having a gun and game licence in order to legally destroy these pests, the game
birds are rapidly being conserved out of existence in a large area of country.
It is thought that if a bounty of even 50 cents were granted for each horned owl killed it
would materially result in their destruction, also proving a welcome small addition to the revenue
of those living in the more sparsely settled portions of the Province, many of whom would thus
become in effect active game wardens engaged in the true conservation of game birds.
Green Lake and tributary waters contain only suckers, which are poor food-fish.
Sheridan Lake is known to contain only ling and squaw-fish, the latter growing to a huge-
size.   This appears to be an excellent lake to stock with black bass, since they could not migrate
and interfere with trout in other Bridge Creek waters.
Fawn Lake, lying less than half a mile north of the land surveyed this season, teems with,
rainbow trout of large size, which take either fly or troll readily and afford excellent sport.
I have, etc.,
W. S. Drewby, B.C.L.S. L 44 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
By O. B. N. Wilkie.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—Having received instructions from your Department to make surveys in the Nicola
District, I have the honour to submit the following description of the country covered by me
during the season:—
My party was organized at Merritt, which is a prosperous town situated at the junction
of the Coldwater and Nicola Rivers, where the Kettle Valley Railway joins the Nicola Valley
branch of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
Merritt contains a population of about 1,500 people, who are engaged chiefly in mining and
agriculture. General farming is carried on successfully, mostly with the aid of irrigation,
although dry-farming has been carried on at the Provincial Government Dry Farm for the
past three seasons, and the crops are as good if not better than those obtained with the aid
of irrigation. Good Government roads extend in all directions from Merritt, making it easy
of access for the ranchers to market their produce. Stock-raising is the principal agricultural
industry, the higher elevations forming excellent summer and fall pasture; the lower elevations
being usually cropped for hay and grain. Small fruits and the hardier varieties of apples are
also found to do well in this portion of the country.
There are four coal-mines operating in the vicinity of Merritt—namely, the Middlesboro
Collieries, Inland Coal & Coke Company, Pacific Coast Collieries, and the Merritt Collieries,
formerly known as the Diamond Vale. The latter property has just been opened up after lying
idle for three or four years. An excellent quality of coal is obtained at these mines, and with
the opening-up of the Kettle Valley Railway's Hope cut-off cheaper freight rates and better
shipping facilities are to be had, making it possible for the local companies to compete against
the Coast mines, and consequently a large increase in orders are reported by all the mines.
There has been a marked increase in the copper-mining activity during the last year, several
properties having been opened up. In the Mamete Lake District the Aberdeen Mines Syndicate
are operating. Over 2,000 tons of ore have been shipped by them in the last year. This ore
has to be hauled by teams to Coyle Station, a distance of twelve miles. Several other prospects
in this district are being developed. At Stump Lake, on the Nicola-Kamloops Road, about thirty
miles from Merritt, the Donohoe Mines are preparing to develop some old property on an
extensive scale with the coming of spring. Considerable interest is also being taken in this
line in the Aspen Grove District.
Logging is carried out on a large scale in the Coldwater District for the Nicola Valley Pine
Lumber Company, who operate a large up-to-date sawmill at Canford, about twelve miles from
Leaving Merritt, I proceeded by wagon-road to Nicola, which is situated at the foot of
Nicola Lake, a large fresh-water lake about eighteen miles in length. The lake is noted for its
excellent fishing. Nicola is the principal shipping-point for stock. Over 4,000 head of cattle
were shipped from this point last year.
From Nicola we proceeded north up Clapperton Creek a distance of about six miles, where
our first surveys were commenced.
Clapperton Creek District.
In this district thirteen recorded pre-emptions were surveyed and five lots of about 160 acres
each were laid out for settlement. The district surveyed lies on either side of Clapperton Creek
and has a general slope to the south.
The land on the west side of the creek consists mostly of high rolling park land timbered
with scattered fir and pine, with occasional clumps of willow and fir underbrush. The land is
well watered by numerous small springs which flow into the main creek. The soil in general
is a sandy loam, with scattered patches of black loam, and requires practically no irrigation.
Vegetables and grain are found to do well here. 7 Geo. 5 Nicola District. L 45
On the east side of the creek the country is timbered mostly with a thick growth of jack-pine
and occasional large fir. The ranchers here have settled on what is known as Bond Creek.
The valley along this creek" widens out into natural hay meadows in places, and these are being
profitably tilled by the ranchers living there.    The elevation of this district is about 3,000 feet.
From Clapperton Creek we moved by wagon-road to Hastings Ranch, in the Otter Valley,
where some amendments were made according to your instructions. In this district cattle-
raising is gone in for mostly, the surrounding hills affording good pasture for the stock.
Leaving the Aspen Grove District, we went by wagon-road to Tulameen, which is situated
at the junction of Otter Creek and Tulameen River. At Otter Lake one recorded pre-emption
and one Government lot containing about 80 acres was laid out for settlement. There is some
good bottom land and bench land to be found near this lake, but the land in general is very
steep and timbered with fir and pine.
From this point we proceeded by wagon-road to
Princeton is a small mining town situated at the junction of the Similkameen and Tulameen
Rivers at an elevation of about 2,000 feet. The Princeton Collieries furnish employment for a
large number of men, while twelve miles distant on Copper Mountain some large mining concerns
are actively engaged in opening up the copper properties there. In all, some 400 men are
employed In the work, and this furnishes a great source of income for the town.
Mixed farming and stock-raising is carried on in the valleys surrounding Princeton. Transportation is furnished by two railways—namely, the Great Northern and the Kettle Valley;
while well-kept Government roads reach out in every direction. The district is served by an
efficient Government telephone system.
From Princeton we moved by railway to Brodie, at the junction of the Hope and Merritt
branches of the Kettle Valley Railway on the Coldwater River. This is about two miles from
Brookmere, a freight divisional point on the railway. A sawmill has been built and is operating
This country is composed mostly of high mountain land which is held under timber licences.
The timber, which consists of bull-pine and a few fir, is shipped by train to Canford, where it
is manufactured into lumber by the mill situated at that point. In the Coldwater Valley mixed
farming and stock-raising is successfully carried on. In this valley I subdivided an expired
timber limit for settlement purposes. The land had been burned over, and consequently there
was very little brush or timber standing.   The soil is of a sandy loam nature.
From here we moved by rail on down the Coldwater Valley to Merritt, and from there by
road a distance of six miles to Lower Nicola, a srhall but thriving farming community. »
Lower Nicola is situated at the junction of the valleys formed by the Nicola River and
Ten-mile Creek. General farming is gone into on a large scale, the soil, which is a black loam,
being well adapted for this purpose. Some of the best crops of the valley are raised at this
point.   The land is easily irrigated from the waters of the Ten-mile Creek.
On a high bench about four miles north-west of Lower Nicola four recorded pre-emptions
were surveyed. The land consisted of open timbered land with poplar and willow underbrush.
It is well watered by numerous small springs. Potatoes are grown very successfully at this
elevation, which is about 2,500 feet, and grain also ripens. A Government telephone system
connects all the principal towns throughout the district.
Game is in abundance throughout the country. Grouse, prairie-chicken, ducks, geese, rabbits,
and deer are to be had in the immediate vicinity, while farther back in the mountains bear,
cougar, and lynx are to be found. Many of the streams and lakes furnish excellent Ashing, and
these are easily reached either by railway or wagon-road.
I have, etc.,
O. B. N. Wilkie, B.C.L.S. L 46 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
By R. P. Brown.
December 6th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on my work in the vicinity of
Fairview, Similkameen District, during the past season:—
I moved into camp at the summit of the Fairview-Keremeos Wagon-road on July 11th, 1916,
and, commencing at Lot 262, surveyed all pre-emptions and lands suitable for settlement over an
area of about four miles east and six miles north from Lot 262, surveying, in all, seventeen
pre-emptions and nineteen lots of 160 acres each, totalling an area of 5,800 acres approximately.
The lots surveyed by me are suitable for mixed farming, an average lot comprising about
60 acres of cultivable land, part open bench land and part willow and alder bottom, suitable for
growing timothy and clover, oats, wheat, and barley, and the balance good grazing land. The
elevation of these lots is from 2,500 to 3,500 feet above sea-level, and there is sufficient precipitation to grow crops without irrigation. This is not a matter of conjecture, but was evidenced by
crops of wheat, oats, barley, and potatoes grown by settlers in this vicinity this last season.
One oat-field of about 15 acres, the land in which was broken up by disk plough only, yielded
approximately 30 bushels per acre; and had this land been properly broken and cultivated, in
order to preserve the moisture, the yield per acre would probably have been double.
There is sufficient suitable timber for building purposes and fences on every lot; also plenty
of good water for domestic purposes, either small streams or springs on most of the lots; and
on lots where there is neither spring nor stream, good water, free from alkali, is easily obtained
by wells of 10 to 15 feet in depth in almost every small draw.
On the adjacent hills there is a large area of land (either open side-hills growing luxuriant
bunch-grass, or half-open scrubby timber growing timber-grass and vetches) which is unfit for
cultivation on account of the high elevation and steep slopes, but which is splendid range land.
Cattle, will fatten on this area during the summer months and do well up to the end of November.
There are good wagon-roads within easy reach, none of the surveyed lots being more than
two miles from either the Fairview-Keremeos Road or a road running from Myers Flat up
Orofino Creek to Lot 527 (S.).
At present Penticton, about twenty-five miles away by road, is the nearest market for produce,
but this long haul makes it unprofitable for the settlers in this vicinity to grow anything but
wheat or oats. However, immediately the lands surrounding Fairview are developed and planted
with fruit-trees, the settlers will have a big market within easy reach. Fairview is only from
five to ten miles from these lots.    Dairying will then be the most profitable business.
Blue and ruffed grouse are plentiful, also rabbits. Deer are numerous in the fall and winter
months, but are scarce in the summer months. Fresh signs of bear were seen almost every day,
but only two small black bear were actually seen.
A small bounty should again -be placed on horned owls; they are becoming more numerous
and kill a large number of grouse. Twice during the season I scared a horned owl during its
meal-time, and obtained a freshly killed blue grouse each time.
The climate of the Okanagan District is ideal. During the three months that I was in the
field we lost only half a day on account of rain, and up to October 17th, the day we struck camp,
the weather was beautifully warm, although during the last two weeks we had a slight frost
every night.
I have, etc.,
R. P. Brown, B.C.L.S. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Nicholson Creek, Similkameen District. L 47
By B. A. Moorehouse.
November 25th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on my season's work in the Nicholson
Creek District from the Kettle River northwards:—
Nicholson Creek enters the Kettle River from the north at a small flag-station on the Kettle
Valley Railway about eight miles west of Midway, B.C., called after the beautiful orchard-
covered valley of the Kettle River—Kettle Valley, where a post-office is located.
At Riverside, about one mile west along the river, are a large store, school, hotel, and other
facilities, with the main station on the railway at Rock Creek still one mile farther west. Here
lives the old pioneer, Henry Nicholson, at present Mining Recorder at that place, after whom
Nicholson Creek gets its name.
The land surveyed range from an elevation of from 3,300 to 3,500 feet above sea-level, this
being some 1,300 feet above the bottom valley lands along the main Kettle River at its confluence
with Nicholson Creek, and are thus well within the altitude limit for producing the hardy grains
and vegetables, etc.
For the first six miles up the creek all the land has been settled from ten to twenty years
ago, but at this point survey operations began, making the ranch of Edward Heed, known as the
Heed Ranch, the starting-point. From here the country is cut up by several tributaries of
Nicholson Creek into valleys and basins isolated from each other by low ranges of hills upon
which the stock have pasturage most of the year.
A splendidly made Government road gives access to these lands up the various valleys direct
from Rock Creek, and at the eastern extremity of the road a good trail leads to Greenwood, B.C.,
about eleven miles from the Heed Ranch. This is the old prospectors' trail and passes through
the West Copper claims, which are just east of Lot 2332 (S.) and situate on the side of the
West Copper Mountain.
A large percentage of the settlers are away with H.M. Forces, and this delayed an effort
to secure school and post-office facilities at a central location near the Heed Ranch.
This ranch was pre-empted about eight years ago, and is a good example to the incoming
settler of what can be done on land which was similar to the land brought before his notice up
the creek. It was, like most of the land surveyed, covered with dense young pine and fir and
willow-bush, etc., this being the second growth of timber from a forest fire of vast proportions
which swept the district in the year 1885, leaving in some isolated places the large fir, tamarack,
and cedar trees untouched.
Much more than 50 per cent, of the land surveyed was, or has been since, taken up for
pre-emption, and the large two- and three-room houses and cabins, built mostly of lumber from
the local sawmill about three miles down the main road, speak well for the permanent settlement
of the district.
The climate is excellent and bracing, though not free from summer frosts in some seasons.
Rainfall is moderate, being heaviest in June, whilst the snowfall covers the ground to a depth
of from 12 to 18 inches, remaining until March. Temperatures vary from the warm days with
cool nights of the summer months to a winter ranging from 40 above to 15 degrees below zero
during the few cold snaps, which do not last for many days at a time.
The country generally is park-like, consisting of undulating hills and numerous valleys well
watered by creeks; some parts of the land being free from timber and others well timbered with
dense fir and jack-pine and willows, the latter two being an indication of good moist soil well
worthy of cultivation. Several small swamps and meadows are ready for cultivation, with a
little drainage required.
The soil is generally a rich black loam from 10 to 15 inches in depth, with a subsoil varying
in places from clay to sandy gravel; all the hillsides being covered with a splendid growth of
bunch-grass and many fine varieties of other grasses and wild flowers. Rock bluffs and stony
places are, of course, evident in places, but on the whole a large area of each lot surveyed can
be brought under cultivation and the balance used for range land for stock. L 48 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
The land is most suited for mixed farming and stock-raising. On the Heed Ranch an
excellent crop of oats, wheat, and timothy is raised, with a double crop of timothy and clover;
also potatoes, turnips, carrots, beets, lettuce, and radishes and onions are grown to profusion,
as also small fruits, as raspberries, currants, etc. There is also a young orchard coming into
bearing, but owing to gophers being plentiful the roots of the trees appear to be suffering. As
these get eliminated with the advance of civilization, orchards should do exceedingly well for
the hardy varieties of fruits.
Cattle, horses, and pigs are reared on this ranch, and poultry are a good success, there-
being always a market at either Rock Creek, Kettle Valley, or Midway for butter, eggs, fruits,
and vegetables of all kinds.
Such are the possibilities on all the land surveyed now open for pre-emption in a more or
less degree, but to a settler not used to a timbered country this would appear at first sight
Land-clearing is the obstacle to first overcome, and this is much easier than at first appears.
To slash down the young fir and jack-pine and lay in windrows to dry previous to burning could
be done at a cost of $12 per acre. Some settlers have followed this system, and then let tihe
stumps rot away for a period of one or two winters, after which they find them removable by
hand quite easily; or if It was desirable to uproot the stumps after slashing, a team with block
and tackle can pull many at a time. The stumps are in most cases only 2 to 4 inches in diameter;
others are few and far between and could be blown out with stumping-powder. To clear and
stump and burn up the land ready for cultivation should not cost more than $18 per acre.
Though the settlers are not rich, they find employment on the Government roads or near-by
farms, harvesting, etc., in order to provide means to live until their own crops are sufficient to
reimburse them their living. Stock-raising is a great help and vegetables of the hardy varieties
are a sure thing. Tomatoes, corn, and other tender vegetable plants would not be a success
because of the possibility of summer frosts at night.
No mining is being done in the district at present, though from the three surveyed copper
claims on the property ore was taken over pack-trails some eighteen years ago. With the
present high price of copper and the now excellent road to the railway, these claims should
be payable, if not held by companies organized years ago for speculation purposes.
Very little game was seen during the survey operations, but bear and deer are plentiful in
the district. Grouse, pheasants, and duck were seen in large numbers. Coyotes are also plentiful,
and a few cougar in the northern part.
The land to the north and east of the land surveyed in the allotment for my work is hilly
and rough, and not considered suitable for any purpose at present.
I have, etc.,
B. A. Moorehouse, B.C.L.S.
By- A. H. Green. ^
January 2nd, 1917.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report on the work done by me for your Department during the
past season as follows :—
Situation of Lots.
The southerly limit of the land surveyed is about one mile north of Taghum, a small station
on the Canadian Pacific Railway, five miles west of Nelson.
A fairly good wagon-road provides access to all of the lots. This road runs from Taghum,
where it joins the road to Nelson, to the Lambert Lumber Company's mill, said mill being
situated about three-quarters of a mile north of the northerly limit of the land surveyed. There
is also a branch road connecting with the above road, and running through the lots surveyed on
Deer Creek. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Princeton. L 49
Sproule Creek and its tributaries provide ample water for domestic needs, and most of the
land, if necessary, could be irrigated from these creeks.
The area surveyed has been logged off for the most part and is now covered with a dense
growth of young pine, hemlock, and willow, with a great deal of fallen timber. With the
exception of a narrow flat extending along both Sproule and Deer Creeks, the land consists
of benches, broken by numerous ravines, which rise from the creeks on either side.
The soil is a sandy loam with considerable surface rock. Apples, cherries, and small fruits
are doing well on adjoining land of similar quality.
I have, etc.,
A. H. Green, B.C.L.S.
By P. W. Gregory.
December 4th, 1916.
Cr. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit herewith the following general report upon the lands
surveyed by me during the past season under your Instructions dated July Sth:—
The work assigned to me comprised the survey of seventeen pre-emptions in the vicinity of
Princeton and the subdivision for settlement of about 12,430 acres of land held for the past six
or seven years under coal licences. Of these coal lands, about 5,470 acres were surveyed into lots
generally 160 acres in extent, upon five of which pre-emption records had already been granted
by the Department. The remaining 6,960 acres of these coal lands were carefully examined, but
being considered unsuitable for settlement were not subdivided. Of this latter tract, however,
some 2,000 acres, situated along the right bank of the Similkameen River above Princeton, is
land especially suitable to cattle-ranging. It consists of bunch-grass slopes and benches, with
small lakes and drinking-pools scattered throughout, and it is thought that such tracts might
well be held in reserve as common range for the district.
The whole of the lands covered by my operations lie within a radius of seven miles and a
half of the town of Princeton, and may be described as grassy slopes and benches along the
Similkameen and Tulameen Rivers, which converge at that town.
With the exception of a few flats along these rivers, already under occupation, the lands
immediately adjoining the rivers consist generally of steep hillsides, rising to a height of 100
to 300 feet above the river, then breaking off into terraces or benches, receding for a distance
of from two to three miles from the river-valley, and again rising in steep ridges to a height of
approximately 1,500 feet above the river or a height above sea-level of 3,500 feet. The town of
Princeton lies at an elevation of 2,000 feet above datum, and the rivers have a fall of about
25 feet to the mile in its vicinity. The ridges referred to vary considerably in character, some
being rocky and rugged, whilst others are unbroken grassy slopes, often flat-topped, upon which
small wild hay meadows and miniature lakes are sometimes found.
The terraces or benches may be described as undulating grassy lands, timbered with fir and
yellow pine, and scattered here and there small willow and alder bottoms, poplar groves, and
patches of dense young firs and pines. A greater part of this country impresses one as being
very park-like, where one may wander without trouble from brush or bramble among the tall
firs and pines. In the spring and early summer the ground is carpeted with a mass of wild
flowers, yellow, blue, red, colour succeeding colour as the months advance.
The country surveyed is well provided with roads and trails. The roads are well built
and cared for, being frequently the occasion of very favourable comment from the automobile
4 travellers who tour northward from the neighbouring State. Of the roads, mention may be
made of three principal: First, the old Nicola Wagon-road, being the direct route from Merritt
to Hedley and Keremeos via Princeton, a road previously much used for heavy freighting prior
to and contemporary with the construction of the railways through this section; second, the
Copper Mountain Road, from Princeton to Voigt's Camp, eight miles and beyond to the Copper
Mountain Camp of the British Columbia Copper Company, a distance of ten miles from the town;
third, the road running southward from Princeton to a point near Friday Creek, a road destined
to be the most important in the Province—namely, the Trans-Provincial Highway. Between
Friday Creek and Hope, a distance of about seventy miles still remains to be completed.
Approaching Princeton from the south along the successive and rapidly descending terraces
or benches, the traveller along this highway can observe, first to the right and then to the left,
as he emerges from the timbers or rounds a corner, beautiful panorama of the Similkameen and
Tulameen Rivers, with their glistening riffles, in whose encircling arms rests the little town,
whilst beyond rise the open grassy ranges, capped by dark strips of fir and pine, fading into the
blue distance of a succession of high timbered ridges. This road when completed will bring this
locality within 170 miles of Vancouver, and will render It possible for travellers from the Coast
to reach all parts of the Boundary, Okanagan, and Kootenay countries, which are so particularly
attractive to the tourist. Along the small portion of this road already constructed south of
Princeton are many valuable copper and silver-lead properties, some of which the British Column
bia Copper Company is engaged in developing, having a subsidiary camp established about ten
miles from the town, where some forty men are at present employed.
In the matter of railway communication this district is well provided, there being the
Kettle Valley Railway, operating on the Coast-Kootenay route of the Canadian Pacific Railway,
and also the Victoria, Vancouver & Eastern Railway. Thus the Coast, the Okanagan, Boundary,
and Kootenay countries, as also the State of Washington, are available by these systems, and
Vancouver, Vernon, Rossland, Nelson, and Spokane are all within easy reach. Vancouver is only
a nine-hour run.
The population of the district is at present in the neighbourhood of 1,000, for the greater
part engaged in mining, coal-mining, prospecting, and farming. The British Columbia Copper
Company employs about 270 men and the local Coal Company about eighty at present. The
recently improved railway facilities have greatly assisted the coal Industry, and situated as
this district is, with good markets in all directions, it is safe to conclude that other properties
in this extensive coal-basin will be opened up at no distant date.
With regard to farming, there is a market for all that is produced locally. The country
appears to be particularly suited to mixed farming and cattle-raising, though the question of
winter feed has to be carefully attended to. There are several small chicken-ranches in the
district operated with success.
The soil on the lands surveyed is generally a sandy loahi, which may be irrigated with
advantage, especially in the dry years. Several of the tracts subdivided are situated along
creeks tributary to the two main rivers, and these can usually be more or less easily irrigated.
Water is generally to be found a short distance below the surface. Most varieties of the common
grasses, grains, and vegetables can be grown with success.
The timber consists almost entirely of yellow pine and fir, ranging from 12 inches to 4 feet
in diameter, and in the proportion of about 75 per cent, yellow pine to 25 per cent, fir, whilst
of the yellow pine 40 per cent, at least has been killed off by a species of beetle, whose ravages
were first apparent in the district some five years ago. This dead standing timber is all sap-
stained, but could be utilized for a rough grade of lumber for local use if cut and sawn now.
It stands in scattered patches, sometimes as much as 50 acres in one patch. The fir timber is
unaffected by this pest. The young growth throughout is met with in small dense patches and
is mostly fir. The cost of clearing the land would run from about $30 to $50 per acre. Timber
for cabins and for fence-posts and rails is always to be found within a convenient distance.
The climate is nearly all that can be desired, although in some years summer frosts occur.
Rainfall is moderate, and also the snowfall. Snow usually covers the ground during the months
of December, January, and February to a depth varying from 18 inches to 2 feet. During the
three months mentioned the temperature ranges from 40 degrees above to 10 degres below zero,
with an occasional extreme winter temperature of 30 to 40 degrees below. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Sechelt Inlet. L 51
Game is plentiful, grouse, duck, and deer especially, whilst the creeks and lakes afford
excellent trout-fishing. Coyotes are numerous, and bear are to be found in the hills more
remote from the town.
In conclusion, it may be mentioned that a great many local land-seekers have examined the
areas surveyed, and it is anticipated that when these lands are formally opened for pre-emption
entry there will be very few which are not applied for.
I have, etc.,
P. W. Gregory, B.C.L.S.
By J. E. Laverock.
December 15th, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report herewith on lands surveyed by me during the past season.
These lands lay at the southerly end of Sechelt Inlet, at the northerly end of Sechelt Peninsula,
and in the valley of the Horseshoe River, about six miles north of Stillwater. The greater
proportion of the acreage surveyed consisted of small groups of recorded pre-emptions, the
boundaries of which it was desirable to establish, but 2,200 acres of vacant Crown lands were
also surveyed into claims varying from 40 to 80 acres in area.
Porpoise Bay, Sechelt Inlet.
Survey-work was commenced on the easterly side of Porpoise Bay, by which name the head
or southerly end of Sechelt Inlet is known. Here an area of logged-off land, formerly Timber
Licence 33923, was subdivided into twelve claims of approximately 60 acres each.
The north-westerly portion of this tract forms a headland marking the northerly limit of
Porpoise Bay. Around the greater part of this headland the shore is steep and rocky and the
land adjoining of inferior quality and rough contour, but on the northerly shore, in Lot 4679,
a draw opening from a sandy beach contains a small acreage of good soil.
To the south of the headland above referred to, parts of the shore-line are also rocky and
abrupt, but the adjoining land is lower and carries back in easy slopes and benches on which
are areas of gravelly loam soil of good quality. Toward the southerly end of water-frontage a
deep protected bay between Lots 4688 and 4689 has a narrow beach of fine gravel along its inner
sweep, and in this bay there is also good anchorage.
The interior lands of this tract are of a generally favourable contour. Many acres of flat
or gently sloping land exist, and of the balance the greater part is made up of low rounded
ridges or sharper slopes between different levels of the flatter land. The general fall of the
land is toward the south-west.
The prevailing soil on these lots is a sandy loam of fair quality. The soil is of good depth
throughout and contains little gravel except on the higher ridges. Alder and maple has in places
coated the soil with top mould, and in other places areas of black soil occur where seepage has
kept the surface moist, rotting the collected vegetation.
As a timber licence this land was logged over some considerable time ago, and more recently
has been worked over for shingle-bolts. In logging, oxen or horses were used for draught
purposes, and the roads then made, though somewhat grown up, could readily be improved to
give access to these lands. In shingle-bolting some of the old roads have been opened up and
connected to a landing and chute on the east side of the bay in Lot 4688. Despite the fact that
the land has been logged over, the inferior and undersized timber left standing, as well as stumps
and debris, present the usual obstacles to extensive or ready clearing. Logging has, however,
cleared away much tall shadowing growth, so that small scattered areas where clearing is light
can be brought into use while the heavier work is being carried on.
General access to these lands is best had by way of Sechelt, from which landing there Is a
daily steamer service both up and down the Coast. From Sechelt a Government wagon-road
leads across the three-quarter-mile portage to the head of Porpoise Bay, at which point the L 52 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
Government wharf has been renewed during the present year. From here it is a distance of
two miles and a half by water to the property. In this connection it may be noted that the
road from Sechelt across the portage could be readily extended along the easterly shore of
Porpoise Bay as far as the tract surveyed, the intervening land along shore being low and
generally level.
The public school for this district is situated at the head of Porpoise Bay near the
Government wharf. Near this point also a small sawmill is in operation, supplying local demand.
At Sechelt there is a large general store, post-office, and hotel, as well as a small settlement.
This latter is greatly augmented during the summer months, Sechelt being a favourite summer
resort on account of its fine beach and proximity to Vancouver.
As these lands are within thirty-five miles of the latter city they are in touch with its
market for general produce, but during the summer months a local market can be found in the
vicinity of Sechelt for all kinds of garden-truck, small fruits, etc.
Sechelt Inlet.
On completion of the work at Porpoise Bay the survey of a number of claims along the
shores of Sechelt Inlet, between this bay and Salmon Arm, were carried out. The shores of
this portion of the inlet are for the most part steep and rock-bound, but small protected flats
occur, mostly at creek-mouths, and about these areas have been pre-empted, more as providing
convenient home-sites than for their possibilities as future farm lands..
On one of these claims, Lot 3259, the pre-emptor, H. D. Irvine, has cleared a garden-plot
of an acre or more and put same in excellent shape. A substantial and well-finished bungalow
has also been erected, which with other improvements, in the way of floating wharf, good outbuildings, and water-supply for house and garden, make an entirely creditable showing. Several
small wooded islands along the shore of this claim add to an already picturesque home-site.
On the other recorded claims surveyed the erection of small dwellings and clearing of small
garden-patches constitute present improvements.
Agamemnon Bay.
Surveys were next carried out at Agamemnon Bay, on the north end of Sechelt Peninsula.
Here, part of Lot 3270, a logged-off timber licence, was divided into seven claims of approximately 40 acres each. These lots occupy an area, of low land which extends southerly from
the centre of Agamemnon Bay to the head of Ruby Lake. Along the easterly and southerly
boundaries of the area surveyed the bottom slopes of neighbouring hills encroach with narrow
areas of steep rocky land. Throughout the central and western portions of the tract, however,
the greater part of the land is level or easy sloping, and the only waste land is that taken up
by several protruding rocky knolls.
The soil on these lots is varied, being in some places a fine loam carrying considerable mould,
and in others a gravelly loam containing a clay silt. Areas of flat marshy land with a silt or
a black soil also occur, these latter areas being well adapted for drainage and lightly timbered.
The former timber-growth on these claims was largely cedar, and this has been thoroughly
logged off, greatly assisting clearing operations. There are throughout small open areas which
can readily be put into use, and the general clearing of this land will entail considerably less
labour than usual. In logging, an extensive system of roads was constructed, and these give
ready access to all parts of the land surveyed.
These lands could be most profitably made use of for the raising of such garden produce
and small fruits as would suit the demands of logging camps, of which there are a number in
operation in the immediate vicinity.
The Union Steamship Company gives a service twice weekly up and down Agamemnon
Channel, and these boats also collect and deliver mail. From Vancouver the trip is a matter
of some sixty miles.
Sakinaw and Ruby Lakes.
These lakes lie towards the north-west face of Sechelt Peninsula. Sakinaw Lake discharges
from its southerly end into Agamemnon Channel at a point about two miles north of Pender
Harbour. This southerly end of the lake lies within 200 yards of tide-water and is practically
at the level of the latter. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Sechelt Inlet. L 53
The lake extends some six miles in a north-easterly direction, and at its northerly end a
creek flows in from Ruby Lake, across to which by trail the distance is under half a mile. This
latter lake extends in a north-westerly direction two miles and a half, its upper end being within
three-quarters of a mile of Agamemnon Bay. Sakinaw Lake does not exceed a mile in width,
but this latter varies greatly owing to the winding form of the opposite shores. Ruby Lake has
a varying width averaging three-quarters of a mile.
A number of small purchase claims and some fifteen pre-emption claims have been taken
up around the shores of these lakes. Of the latter claims, ten had been newly recorded and were
surveyed during the past season.
These various claims are, in general, characterized by a rough contour and rocky surface,
and the land suitable for cultivation is found in small and scattered areas. On these the soil
is mostly a light gravelly loam, and the item of clearing will be considerable, though on Sakinaw
Lake the claims surveyed had been partly logged over. Near the head of this lake some small
areas of good land are found inshore, where the wash of soil and vegetable matter from the
hills has filled in between the ridges. These flats are lightly timbered with small alders and
evergreens. On Lot 3988 an exceptional area of 20 acres of the above character exists. On
Ruby Lake, though several low benches and points along shore are of favourable contour, the
soil on them is poor and gravelly. On some of the inner benches along this lake there are,
however, scattered areas of good soil with light timber-growth.
On some of the older claims improvements in the way of permanent dwellings, planting of
gardens, and general clearing operations have been carried out, but on the newer claims little
has as yet been done.
Improvement-work is at present retarded owing to the fact, especially worthy of note, that
ten of the pre-emptors from this district are at present absent on active military service with
various Canadian battalions.
To those desiring a home-site " close to Nature " and in attractive surroundings these lakes
appeal strongly. As there are some five other smaller lakes in this vicinity, the whole may at
some time form a popular summer-resort district, and lands hereabout be esteemed for this
purpose. On account of the small areas of good soil and difficulty of developing these, this
district cannot, however, be recommended for agricultural purposes.
The southerly end of Sakinaw Lake may be reached by a Government trail crossing from
the settlement at Pender Harbour, to which point there is good steamship service. Entrance to
this lake for rowboats may also be had conveniently at high tide from Agamemnon Channel by
way of Sakinaw Creek.
Horseshoe River Valley'.
The balance of the season's work lay in the vicinity of the Horseshoe River, where ten
recorded pre-emptions and a number of 80-acre Government lots were surveyed. These lands
lie within a six-mile radius of Stillwater or of Wulfsohn Bay, these latter being logging centres
on the Mainland Coast some sixty-five miles northerly from Vancouver.
The Horseshoe is a small river about three miles in length, draining a lake of the same
name into the southerly end of Second Gordon Pasha Lake. Its valley is flanked by considerable mountain ridges and has a bottom width of about four miles. In the central portion the
valley falls towards the south, but maintains a general level across its width, while towards
the sides the land rises in irregular benches.
Several classes of land are found, each being distributed over the valley in recurring areas
of varying size. A greater acreage of alder land is to be found in this locality than is at all
usual in Coast lands. On this land the soil is in some places a reddish-brown loam free from
gravel and in others a clay-silt soil. The top surface is well mingled and coated with leaf-
mould and the soil is of good depth, with a subsoil of coarse sandy loam. This land is of a
general rolling contour or lies in sweeping slopes. The alder-growth is fairly open and trees
average 8 inches diameter. Scattered second-growth firs and old stubs occur, but as a whole
these lands may be cleared with reasonable labour and would produce splendid results under
In several places in the valley old beaver meadows exist, the largest of these occupying
some 65 acres. Around the sides of these meadows a firm alluvial soil has formed, bearing a
scattered growth of crab-apple, spruce, and second-growth fir.    Toward the centre these meadows L 54 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
are open, having only a growth of tea-plant and coarse marsh-grass. On these central areas
some muskeg is found, but as a whole the soil is a firm silted formation. A central creek is
generally found flowing through these meadows, and the bed of such would indicate a depth of
top soil of about 4 feet, with a subsoil of coarse gravelly material. These meadows flood during
winter months owing to their flat surface and bad condition of their drainage-creeks, but if
cleared and drained these lands would raise excellent hay and root crops. Toward the sides
of the valley areas of good loam soil occur, but these contain little open land, being timbered
with second-growth fir, small cedar, and hemlock. There are also found throughout this district
ridges of poorer gravelly soil and outcropping ledges and knolls of rock, but in general the
percentage of good land in this valley is high.
There is as yet no direct road or trail from tide-water to these lands, and access is readily
had only by favour of the Brooks, Scanlon & O'Brien Company over their logging-railway terminating at Stillwater. This railway extends to the lower end of First Gordon Pasha Lake,
a distance of three miles. From here it is necessary to go by boat up through this lake to the
mouth of the Horseshoe River. From this point a fair pack-trail extends north-westerly through
the valley, with a branch trail leading along the Horseshoe River. A road serving this district
could be extended through a pass near the head of First Gordon Pasha Lake, and thence on out
to the Government wharf on the east side of Wulfsohn Bay. It is advocated by settlers that
a road be carefully located and opened out as a pack-trail for the time being. This trail could
then, as development takes place, be widened and completed as a road, which latter is a necessity
for the prosperous settlement of this valley.
Seven of the pre-emptors, three of whom have families, are in active occupation of their
claims. Substantial dwellings have been erected, gardens planted out, and further clearing
operations are under way. Though the district is new, several cattle and horses, also some
pigs, have already been brought in, and part of the feed for these is already found on the land.
As the settlers have past experience in clearing land and farming, a prosperous settlement should
soon grow up in these parts.
As to markets, it may be said that two of the large logging companies operating locally have
made definite offers to buy their entire supply of farm produce from local settlers and pay
current Vancouver prices. With the advent of a road to tide-water other similar markets could
be opened up, and it would also be feasible to ship direct to Vancouver or to up-Coast points.
Mention may be made of the many lakes to be found hereabouts, numbering some twelve
in all. Of these, the largest and most accessible are Horseshoe Lake, Dodd Lake, and the
three lakes forming the Gordon Pasha chain. In all of these there is good fishing, trout of
the " cut-throat " variety up to 8 lb. in weight having been caught.
I have, etc.,
J. Laverock, B.C.L.S.
By' N. F. Townsend.
November 23rd, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on the work carried out by me
during the season of 1916:—
On receipt of your instructions, dated June 30th, to survey pre-emptions and to connect
certain scattered surveys on and adjoining Powell Lake, I proceeded to Olson Landing and there
commenced operations.
Olson Landing, which is the shipping-point for the settlers in the Olson Valley, is the name
given to the Powell Lake end of the wagon-road—three miles or thereabouts in length—which
has lately been constructed as far as Olson Lake for the benefit of the settlers in that locality.
It is located on the west shore of the lake close to the month of Olson Creek, about eighteen
miles from Powell River, and on our arrival consisted of a few boat-houses; the subsequent
establishment of a shingle-bolt camp during our stay, however, giving the spot a busier
appearance. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Powell Lake. L 55
The greater portion of the Olson Valley, through which Olson Creek flows, was subdivided
into lots for settlement a few years back and contains several families. It is provided with a
school and has a weekly mail service with Powell River. Most of the settlers in the valley are
raising excellent vegetables and small fruits on those portions of their holdings already cleared,
there being a ready and good market at Powell River for all they can produce.   .
The land surveyed at this point consisted of three pre-emptions fronting on Powell Lake,
two lying to the south of the creek and one to the north. On the northerly one there is a fair-
sized area of good land near the lake and close to Lot 521. Here the pre-emptor has erected a
small house and has a small garden.
The amount of agricultural land on the other two pre-emptions to the south is very limited,
-the country, generally speaking, being rough and badly broken up. Much of the timber has been
destroyed by fire, but there is still some good fire-killed cedar left standing which can be utilized
to advantage.
Having completed these pre-emptions, we moved up to Olson Lake, which stands at an
approximate elevation of 400 feet above Powell Lake; in the neighbourhood of which we surveyed
two more lots, in addition to tying on this survey to a group of mineral claims on the Theodosia
All of the land adjoining Olson Lake is part of that previously surveyed area before
mentioned, and has been taken up by pre-emptors; the lots surveyed this year lying in the
valley of the Theodosia River, which latter is separated from Olson Lake by an extremely low
divide. The valley at this point is narrow, there being a flat on the north side of the river
(which here takes an abrupt turn to the west for a short distance) extending back half a mile;
thence rising to a bench about a quarter of a mile wide, when the base of the mountain is
reached. Most of this flat is, however, covered by timber licences. On the south side the ground
rises steeply from the river.
The Theodosia Valley contains some fine timber, has a general south-westerly trend, and an
outlet at the head of Theodosia Arm of Malaspina Inlet.
Although the clearing on the two lots under review is heavy, the pre-emptors have both
brought some land under cultivation, on which they are raising vegetables and small fruit.
A traverse was next run from Lot 521, an old Crown-granted lot at Olson Landing, along
the west shore of Powell Lake southerly to connect with the surveyed lots near Chippewa Bay,
rough ties being made to various points on Goat Island en route. Thence we crossed to Goat
Island, and continued the traverse along the south shore westerly, far enough to enable a
triangulation to be made across the lake to the south to the end of the wagon-road built by
the pre-emptors whose lots were to be surveyed; old posts, etc., being located when found.
The shore of that part of Powell Lake embraced in the traverse was found to be mostly rocky,
steep, and bluffy, and no agricultural land was encountered.
The wagon-road was then traversed and connected with Lot 520, and four pre-emptions and
a lot adjoining them on the south surveyed in this vicinity. These pre-emptions are situated in
a large basin surrounded by hills, and the land comprised therein consists of a large swampy
flat having an elevation of about 100 feet above Powell Lake, the remainder being bench land.
The Errico Bros, have, by means of drainage and straightening out the creeks, brought a good
deal of land under cultivation, and, besides growing excellent vegetables, have seeded down some
of the cleared and partly cleared land in grass with satisfactory results. The bench land,
although somewhat light, should prove productive.
As there was some good land lying between these pre-emptions and Frog Lake, another lot,
having frontage on the lake, was surveyed so as to take this in. This stands at rather a higher
altitude than the lots to the north, Frog Lake having an elevation of some 500 feet above Powell
Lake and being drained by a small creek running north to that lake. On this lot, stretching
in a north-westerly direction from Frog Lake, there is a piece of good land, the clearing of which
should not be very difficult, but near the south boundary of the lot there is a considerable amount
of fallen timber of large size.
On completion of the work here we moved camp to the head of Powell Lake, a country of
rugged and imposing scenery, and surveyed three, more pre-emptions, one of which is on the
Upper Powell River. On the latter pre-emption there is some level swampy land close to the
river, the remainder being rough and broken. The narrow river-valley is well timbered with
balsam, hemlock, and cedar, and is mostly held under timber licence.   The river enters the L 56 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
lake at the first falls, which are between 30 and 40 feet in height, and about a mile up the
river are the second falls. Between these falls and for some distance farther up the river is
navigable for canoes. Along the banks of the river are several swamps and beaver-dams, and
from the number of old trappers' trails and other evidences to be found, both here and on
adjacent creeks, it is probable that fur-bearing animals were at one time plentiful in this
Before the raising of the lake-level by the Powell River Pulp Company there must have
been a fairly extensive flat at the mouth of the Upper Powell River, some of which still remains
and forms part of one of the pre-emptions, the balance of its area being principally made up of
rough, rocky country.
A tie-line was run from here southerly for about two miles along the bluffy west shore of
this part of the lake to connect up with the third pre-emption, situated at the mouth of Siwash
Creek, on which, farther back from the lake, mineral claims have been staked, I was informed.
This pre-emption, while not exceptionally rocky, is mostly steep hillside and has only a limited
area of agricultural land.
Transportation and Markets.
The now well-known settlement of Powell River, the site of the Powell River Paper
Company's mill, is, owing to the present demand for its products, an extremely busy place.
It has daily steamer connection with Vancouver. There are, besides the paper-mill, two shingle-
mills near by at the foot of the lake. Thus there is a good pay-roll, and an equally good market
locally for produce brought in by the settlers from the surrounding country.
The climate is good, with a moderate rainfall, and on the lake, shut in as it is by high
mountains, it sometimes gets very warm in summer.
Several mineral claims have been located on and adjacent to the lake, and there seems a
fair prospect of some of these being developed in the near future.
Large and destructive fires have swept over all parts of the lake, and most of the timber
visible from the lake has been badly burnt, much of it having been destroyed. There are,
however, a few logging camps working, and in places there are small stands of dead cedar,
from which excellent, shingle-bolts are obtained.
Powell Lake is a very favourite resort for sportsmen and hunters, and, besides being visited
by those in quest of sport from the outside, is the scene of numerous weekly excursions by Powell
River residents during the fishing and hunting seasons.
There is very good trout-fishing to be had at the head of the lake and at Goat River, while
the fishing at the creek-mouths and in other parts of the lake is good at times. Deer and bear
are said to be plentiful in places, and goat abound in the adjacent hills.
I have, etc.,
N. F. Townsend, B.C.L.S.
* 7 Geo. 5 .        Sayward District. L 57
By H. H. Roberts.
December 11th, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report on surveys made by me in 1916 in
Sayward District:—
The season's work comprised mainly the resurvey of old lots, the subdivision of logged-off
timber lands into small holdings for pre-emption, and the survey of pre-emptions recently taken
up and adjacent Crown lands. Small islands in the vicinity whose exact location and size were
in doubt were also included in our work.    The total area surveyed covers 5,200 acres.
Sayward District is, generally speaking, rugged, mountainous, and heavily timbered. The
area of vacant Crown lands suitable for agricultural purposes is small and scattered. A large
portion of the flat lands and valleys is covered with a valuable growth of timber and held under
lease or special timber licence. There will no doubt be a great demand for these timbered agricultural lands, which will be available for settlement after the removal of the timber-crop and
expiry of the licences. Land-seekers, ignoring perhaps the economic advantages of timber-
conservation, have frequently expressed to the writer their desire that the Government would
take measures to enforce prompt logging of agricultural lands. There is probably a considerable
area of lands along the Coast held under lease or licence which would be more valuable for
agriculture than for timber purposes.
Read Island.
The first three weeks of the season were spent on Read Island, where the following lots
were surveyed:    Lots 279, 282, 285, 286, 362, 363, 182a, and 1008.
We commenced work by investigating the dispute between the holders of pre-emption records
over Lots 279 and 282. Both of these lots front on Hoskyn Inlet and their shore-lines are rocky
and steep-to. The southern portion of Lot 282 has been logged and swept by severe fires which
have left the rock exposed, soil being found only in depressions. Good land, inclined to be swampy
lies near the north-east corner, and at the end of the bay, where the settler's improvements,
consisting of a house, clearing, and orchard, are situated, the soil is of a sandy nature. With
the exception of 15 acres in the northerly portion, Lot 279 is rather rocky and broken. The
settler has made extensive improvements;  the best garden in the island was seen on this area.
On the completion of the above work Lots 285 and 286 were resurveyed. These lots are
covered by pre-emption records and are occupied by their holders. Lot 285 has about 10 acres
of good land in. the south-east quarter, where the settler has his home. The remainder of the
lot is broken, somewhat rocky, and covered with a growth of fir, cedar, hemlock, and salal. The
settler on Lot 286 is making a success of chicken-raising, and vegetables have done well in his
garden.    A good trail connecting Hoskyn Inlet and Burdwood Bay runs through these lots.
The boundaries of Crown-granted Lot 362 were retraced in order to ascertain their correct
position relatively to adjoining lots.
Adjacent to these lots on the east is Lot 1S2a, which is held under pre-emption. Portions
of this lot have been logged and fires have been through the old workings. About 20 acres of
good land is situated in the eastern portion of the lot, where the settler has built a home. A
Government trail connecting Burdwood Bay and northerly end of Read Island traverses this
area. I
Lot 363, fronting on Hoskyn Inlet, is covered by a pre-emption record. In making the
resurvey of this lot the boundaries were extended to include a strip of vacant Crown land lying
to the east and containing about 27 acres.
There are two post-offices on Read Island, one being on Lot 158, in Burdwood Bay, and the
other on Lot 333, in the north-western portion of the island. There is a weekly boat service to
these points from Vancouver. Settlers in the southern portion of Read Island are within easy
distance of Bold Point, which is a point of call for boats and has telegraphic and postal facilities. Upper and Middle Rendezvous Islands.
The Rendezvous Islands, three in number, lie on the west side of Calm Channel and are
separated from the northern part of Read Island by Drew Pass.
The Upper Rendezvous Island is about one mile and a half long, with average width of
one-third of a mile. This island is covered by two pre-emption records, and lots numbered 1050
and 1051 were assigned to them.
Lot 1050 is 168 acres in area and occupies the south-west portion of the island. This area
is for the most part rocky and broken and is covered with a growth of fir, cedar, jack-pine, and
salal. The pre-emptor's house, garden, and clearing, covering an area of about 2 acres, are
situated in central portion of lot and front on Drew Pass. The highest point on the island,
having an elevation of about COO feet above sea-level, is crossed by the north boundary.
Lot 1051 has an area of 199 acres. Its shore-line is very rugged and rocky. Small areas
of good land are scattered over this pre-emption, and portions of the lot carry a heavy growth
of timber. The settler has built a house near the south-east corner, and is getting good results
from his garden, orchard, and chickens. About 5 acres of land have been cleared and are ready
for cultivation.
A passage about one-third of a mile wide lies between Upper and Middle Rendezvous Islands.
Middle Rendezvous Island (Lot 1049) is held under record. Its surface is generally rough
and rocky and covered with fir, cedar, jack-pine, arbutus, and salal. A coarse soil lies in depressions and ravines. An area of level land with coarse sandy soil is found in the centre of the
island, where the settler has a good house, garden, and 4 acres of clearing. This island contains
64.5 acres.
Lower Rendezvous Island, covering an area of about 300 acres, is a short distance south of
the Middle Island, and was not included in our surveys.
Lower Valdes  (Quadra) Island.
Quadra Island is the largest and most southerly island of the Valdes Group. Locally it is
known as the " Big Valdes."
In the vicinity of Main Lake Lots 238, 245, 251, and 252 were resurveyed. Severe fires
have destroyed the best timber on these lands, leaving the country fairly open. Lots 238, 240,
244, and 251 have been pre-empted, and all contain small areas of good land varying in size from
7 to 35 acres.
A majority of the settlers have obtained certificates of improvement. The vacant lots are
rather rocky and broken, but they can probably be used for sheep-raising. A logging company
is operating on Main Lake at the present time, being engaged in logging portions of Timber
Lease " L " and Lots 243 and 251. To facilitate operations the level of the lake has been raised
by means of a dam which has been constructed near the outlet into Village Bay.
The water boundaries of the lots fronting on the lake were not surveyed owing to the
temporary change in the water-level. A good wagon-road connects the south end of Main Lake
with Bold Point Post-office and Wharf.
Lots 1097-1118 are subdivisions of expired Timber Lease Lot 103 -and of adjacent Crown
lands situate in the northern end of Quadra Island. The holdings vary in area from 50 to 90
acres. Lot 1097 is a narrow peninsula formed by Okisollo Channel and Chonat Bay and was
recently logged.
Lots 1098-1100 and 1102-1104 have frontage on Okisollo Channel. Lots 1103 and 1105-1107
front on Chonat Lake, the western end of which is connected to Chonat Bay by a good skid-road
about 900 feet in length. Access to Lots 1109-1115 and 1118 is from Wyatt Bay over old logging
roads and trails.
Lots 1097, 1101, 1107, 1114, 1116, and 1117 are considered to be" second-class lands; they lie
on ridges, surfaces of which are generally rocky, broken, and badly burnt. The remainder of the
subdivision averages about 14 acres of good land to each holding. The soil generally is sandy-
loam, interspersed with patches of black loam in swamps and near creeks and lakes.
Hoskyn Inlet.
Hoskyn Inlet, formed between Read Island on the east and Quadra and Maurelle Islands on
the west, is seven miles long in a northerly direction, with an average width of two-thirds of a 7 Geo. 5 Sayward District. L 59
mile. Its shore-line is broken and rocky, with some small islands off the south entrance and
along the east side. On the western side of the inlet a narrow pass known as Surge Narrows,
lying north-westward of a group of small islands, between them and the south shore of Maurelle
Island, leads into Okisollo Channel.
Lots 1119 and 1120 were given to two islets in Surge Narrows, and 1052-1054 and 1074 to
small islands in the southern end of the inlet. These islands vary in area from 6 to 46 acres.
Their shore-lines are rocky and precipitous; their surfaces are rough and rocky, having soil (of
a coarse sandy nature) only in depressions, which carry a growth of scrub timber and salal.
Wyatt Bay.
Wyatt Bay is a deep bight off Okisollo Channel, on the west side of Quadra Island, containing numerous islets and rocks. The islets were surveyed by the writer, and are now known as
Lots 1072-1082, 1084-10S6. Lots 1072 and 1076 are the only parcels suitable for settlement; they
are now covered by pre-emption records and are occupied. Lot 1072, the more northerly island,
covers an area of 42.6 acres. This island has a store and post-office and is a point of call for
local steamers. This land is rocky and much indented. The soil, which is small in extent, is a
coarse sandy loam.    Jack-pine, fir, cedar, and salal are the principal growths.
Lot 1076, containing 49.5 acres, is known as Octopus Island, and has the same characteristics
as Lot 1072. The description given of the islets in Hoskyn Inlet also applies to the small islands
in Wyatt Bay.
Sonora Island.
This island is one of the Valdes Group and lies to the north of Maurelle and Quadra Islands.
Lots 1087, 1088, and 1090-1093 are islets in the mouth of Owen Bay, in the south-eastern
portion of Sonora Island and in the vicinity of Okisollo Rapids. Their sizes vary from 1 to
20 acres, and they are broken and rocky, with a covering of jack-pine, scrub fir, and salal
Busby Island (Lot 1089), 46.5 acres in area, is held under record, and contains about 10
acres of agricultural laud, soil of which is sandy.
Lot 1094 lies to the east of Lot 1089, and is also occupied by a settler, whose improvements
consist of two houses, barn, garden, and clearing. There are about 15 acres of good land on
this pre-emption.
Lots 1095 and 1096 are on the northern shore-line of Okisollo Channel. Lot 1095 is held
under record and contains in its eastern portion about 35 acres of land with soil varying from
sandy to black loam.    The settler's improvements are near the shore-line.
Lot 1096 is unoccupied, rather rocky and broken, and carries a growth of jack-pine, fir, and
cedar, with scattered clumps of alder in ravines.
General ReMoVrks.
The climate is typical of the Lower Mainland Coast. The rainfall is about 90 inches;
snowfall is comparatively light.    The weather in winter is mild and cool in summer.
The winter of 1915 was more severe than usual, and in consequence deer and grouse were
not seen so frequently as last year. Cod and salmon are abundant in bays and inlets. Logging
and fishing are the principal industries in Sayward District. Settlers are able to dispose of all
their produce in the logging camps or markets in Vancouver and neighbouring towns.
The lands carry timber in sufficient quantities for all settlers' purposes. One of the great
difficulties the settler has to contend with is this timber covering and the stumps or debris left
from logging. Much time, labour, and money are necessary on some lands before they arc cleared
and fit for cultivation. Fire is the settler's principal means of clearing land; but, owing to the
danger to surrounding property which attends its use, burning-permit regulations are enforced.
A reduction in the price of powder and facilities for renting Government-owned donkey-engines
would be welcomed by settlers.
In order to build up communities having schools and other advantages, preference should, in
the writer's opinion, be given to a man having a family when pre-emptions are allotted.
I have, etc.,
H. H. Roberts, B.C.L.S. L 60 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
By John Elliott.
December 6th, 1916.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—Pursuant to your instructions of July 5th, 1916, I have surveyed all lands held under
pre-emption record along the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, throughout the Cheakamus Valley,
and in the vicinity of Summit Lake, also the hatchery reserve on the Birkenhead River, and beg
to report thereon as follows :—
My first work was in the vicinity of Culliton Creek; this stream, formerly most appropriately
known as Swift Creek, would appear to have its source in the glacier-fields on the northerly
slopes of Mount Garibaldi, and after a westerly course of about seven miles joins the Cheakamus
River at a point about fifteen miles from tide-water. About three-quarters of a mile from the
mouth it is joined by a small tributary from the north, and in the valley of this tributary I
surveyed three pre-emptions having a total area of 2S0 acres. The greater part of this area
consists of rocky ridges and mountain spurs; there are small patches of soil in the depressions
between some of the ridges, and in one place there are a few acres of bottom land along the
creek. There is no further land suitable for settlement in this vicinity, and the land already
taken is difficult of access, and if it had not been traversed by one of the older locations of the
Pemberton Trail would probably never have been located. As the bridge across Culliton Creek
has disappeared, this trail can now only be travelled on foot, and any road-building in this
vicinity will be an expensive undertaking.
At Stony Creek, at which point my next work was located, I surveyed thirteen parcels, ten
of these being held under pre-emption record. There is a suspension foot-bridge across the river
here, also a small store and post-office.
The Cheakamus Valley here is of considerable width, but is filled with a mass of hills and
ridges; many of these ridges are composed of lava, in some cases appearing as if poured from
a gigantic ladle; in other places the lava has been broken into small pieces and lies as if piled
by human agency. Another common feature is a steep slope of loose boulders leading up to
perpendicular basalt columns. Between many of these ridges there are small lakes of stagnant
water, and it is with the idea of reclaiming the land covered by these lakes that many of the
places have been taken up. This description will apply to the Cheakamus Valley for a distance
of about eight miles north from Stony Creek.
About one hundred years ago a large portion of the mountain on the east side became
detached and fell into the valley, and now forms a field of boulders, of all sizes, several hundred
acres in extent. Over this boulder-field flows Stony Creek, a very rapid stream and subject to
great fluctuations; it is confined at present to two channels, but has been in the habit of continually changing its position, and on the old Pemberton Trail, which traversed sixty miles of
very rough country, it was the bite noire of all travellers, and I am afraid that those who have
settled about it will find that it has not permanently reformed. This rock-slide, of course,
blocked the old course of the river, which in consequence spread out into two lake-like expanses;
the one of these through which the river still flows is known locally as the Stillwater, and the
other, which lies to the east, is known as Daisy Lake; both are filled with dead trees still
standing. Below the Stillwater the river has cut its way around the westerly limit of the rock-
slide, and in places there are still cedar-trees standing in the current.
There are numerous mineral claims staked in this vicinity, and I noticed signs of mineral
in several locations. Some development-work is being done on a group of claims lying on the
mountain-side to the east of Daisy Lake.
I next moved to Summit Lake, where I surveyed six pre-emptions; one of these lies on the
narrow neck of flat land between Nita and Alpha Lakes, and the rest all embrace part of the
extensive flat which lies between Summit Lake and Green Lake. This flat has, I estimate, an
area of about 1,500 acres, and extends about half-way down the east side of Summit Lake, from
which, however, it is separated by a rocky hill about 500 feet high. This flat land is very wet,
and is generally timbered with scrubby spruce and cedar and covered witli a dense growth of
red willow and alder brush.    There are occasional beaver meadows and patches of grass land. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Chilliwack and Half Moon Bay. L 61
If this land could be properly drained, I have no doubt that it would prove productive, but the
draining cannot be done by individual effort. Again, owing to the elevation above the sea—in
round numbers 2,000 feet—and the situation at the head of a long narrow valley, I am afraid
that the climate will always be an uncertain quantity.
My last work consisted of the survey of a reserve 5 chains wide on each side of the Birkenhead River for a distance of about two miles below the Dominion Government fish-hatchery.
Such land in this vicinity as is suitable for settlement consists of small areas of high bench
land, and has been previously surveyed and alienated. The land covered by the reserve is mostly
hillside. There is considerable timber on the east side of the river, but on the west side the
timber has practically all been taken off.
Summing up, I would say that in my opinion none of the land which I have surveyed can
ever be farmed profitably, but I find that many people by taking up a pre-emption have found
an economical method of living during this strenuous period, and, as each must make some small
improvements, it is perhaps better so than if the land were to remain entirely uninhabited; but
I am afraid, with the return of more prosperous times, much of the land now taken up will
again become vacant.
I have, etc.,
John Elliott, B.C.L.S.
By W. G. McEliianney.
December 10th, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report on sundry surveys made during this season in New
Westminster District in the localities of Half Moon Bay, North West Bay, and Chilliwack.
The work at Half Moon Bay was a continuation of pre-emption surveys undertaken originally
during the season of 1913. The keen demand for land In this vicinity has been occasioned by
its advantageous position on tide-water within fofty miles of Vancouver, the probability of
important operations being carried out in the vicinity, and the high cost of living, principally
of rent and fuel, that obtained in the city. For the past two or three years up to the present
year work has been scarce, and the problem of providing for a family in the city has made a
piece of land where produce and fuel can be obtained practically free very desirable. This has
resulted in an exodus to the pre-emptions in proximity to the Coast that has been very marked
for the past few years. For single men it provides a home where they can make their headquarters at times when they are not employed at any other occupation, and where they can use
their spare time to advantage in clearing land, planting orchard and garden, and where they
can house their personal effects during their periods of absence. There appears to be an inherent
desire in some to own a " bit of land," to have " an anchor to windward," and the contagion of
having a pre-emption is catching. This was tersely expressed to me this season as follows: " I
was bound to have a pre-emption like other fellows.    Now I have one and I don't want another."
To the married man with a family one serious drawback is the fact that there are frequently
not enough children in the settlement to warrant a school being built. The Department of
Education is very liberal in this regard, and will build a school and furnish a teacher where
there are ten pupils of school age.
Another fact that should be taken into consideration is that it takes considerable time and
expense to bring Coast land into a state of cultivation that will produce the necessities of life
without even adding to the income. This means that the settler must either have a source
of income to carry him through the period till his land is producing, or he must obtain work
in the vicinity sufficient to provide for his family, giving his spare time to the improvement of
his property; the first condition is very desirable, but the latter is the one that usually prevails.
The vicinity of a logging-camp, pulp-mill, sawmill, or cannery makes a very desirable location for
a pre-emptor, as in the off-periods a man's time can be profitably employed on his land, while
at the same time he has a house free from rent and a means of obtaining as much produce as
he can find time for which to clear and plant. In the absence of steady employment as above mentioned, there has been for the past few
years a good deal of employment given by the Public Works Department in the construction of
roads, trails, and bridges, as the policy of the Department is to employ local labour. In addition,
too, there is frequently considerable timber on these pre-emptions, not sufficient probably to make
it come under the head of timber land, but which, with the opening of roads, may be profitably
taken out as shingle-bolts, poles, or piles.
In the vicinity of Half Moon Bay the land is, In the main, rocky, with patches of fertile
soil; this, however, bearing only a small proportion to the total acreage—roughly speaking, from
one-twentieth to one-fifth. The clearing is heavy, but the ready sale of shingle-bolts and logs
from these pre-emptions (which are for the most part close to the water) furnishes some return
for the labour involved. The land when cleared is fertile, and produce of all kinds suitable to
the climate can be grown. Fruit-trees grow well and bear readily. Berries are excellent. The
greatest difficulty seems to be fo get enough land cleared and in cultivation to provide a source
of revenue after providing for necessities. Some of these settlers have lived on their land Ave
years, some three years, and while most of them have done considerable slashing and burning
and have built a house, yet in no place have I seen more than an acre in actual cultivation.
This is seemingly slow progress, but in the majority of cases it is only the spare time that is
given to the work after employment on some other work that offers better pecuniary results.
I am of the opinion that to tie up 160 acres of this land in one pre-emption where only
a small acreage is used is not for the best advantage. Smaller holdings would make a more
compact community, with lessened cost for public works and greater proximity to schools,
churches, stores, post-offices, wharves, etc. The land now lying idle would provide homes for
many more settlers and remove any tendency to hold merely for the speculative value of the
timber or the unused portion of the land.
There is plenty of water for domestic purposes. There are fairly good roads and trails at
present, so that most of the pre-emptions are accessible from the beach; the climate is good, the
elevation of the land at present surveyed does not exceed 1,500 feet, and as a place of residence
the locality is desirable. Boats call every day. There is a good harbour, a post-office, store, and
ready market at Vancouver, forty miles distant.
I surveyed five pre-emptions at North West Bay, about three miles farther south. This is
a newer settlement where not as much work has yet been done, but where the conditions are
almost identical with those at Half Moon Bay. In these two districts eight pre-emptors have
gone to the war, and in most cases their families have moved elsewhere for the present, and
consequently improvements are at a standstill. Even with the land cleared there is so much
that cannot be cultivated that it appears to me that the district is best suited for small fruit or
chicken ranches.
In the Chilliwack District the work consisted of the cutting-out of a portion of Lot 439,
now held under timber lease, on which there is not enough timber to hold as a lease, but which
is suitable for cultivation. This is bench land about six miles south of the town of Chilliwack,
on the toji of the ridge separating what is known as the Chilliwack Valley from the Chilliwack
River, and known locally as Parson's or Promontory. It has an elevation of from 800 to 1,000
feet. The area separated amounted to about 2,200 acres, most of which is excellent land, a deep
loam almost entirely free from rock or stones. Some of this land has been cultivated for over
twenty years with good results, roots and vegetables being of very superior quality. Potatoes
in particular are quite equal to the well-known Ashcrofts. The soil is very open, easily worked,
and rich in vegetable matter, except in places where fire has repeatedly burned it. Fire has
run over a considerable part of it and cleared off the standing timber. In some places there Is
a good deal of alder and second-growth fir. This land could be brought under cultivation very
easily, and where it has been it has produced excellent results. All kinds of grain and vegetables
common to the district thrive well. It should be an excellent locality for small fruits or dairying,
while the climate is much brighter and more bracing than that of the low-lying land. There are
good roads, a good school, and substantial buildings, with clearings of from 5 to 20 acres on
each of the holdings. Progress has been held back owing to the inability to obtain title to the
land, but with that obstacle removed and the timber taken from the remainder of the lease,
there should be no drawback to the rapid development of this district.
I have, etc.,
AV. G. McElhanney-. B.C.L.S. 7 Geo. 5 Northern Vancouver Island. L 63
By L. S. Cokely.
December 4th, 1916.
G. H. Daivson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—During the past season I was engaged on scattered surveys extending from Cache
Creek, on the northern coast of Vancouver Island, as far south as Quatsino Soimd, on the west
coast. I arrived at Cache Creek on July 1st, and immediately it commenced to rain and kept
raining until the 20th, making it very difficult to start the season with a new party. Also the
trails were soon nearly impassable, as the country is rather low with many small areas of
muskeg. In reaching our first camp—only a few miles from Cache Creek—we attempted to
use horses, but had to pack most of the outfit on our backs. From then on, until we reached
Holberg on September 3rd, we had to depend entirely on back-packing and take our entire
outfit with us.
During July I was engaged on the survey of pre-emptions and tie-lines in Township 42.
Next we ran the eastern boundaries of Townships 42 aud 41, completing a few small surveys
in that vicinity. This took us into a part of the country where there were no trails, and
concerning which I could get no information. I cruised out a trail connecting Lake William
with the trail to Cache Creek, a distance of five or six miles, over the height of land dividing
the drainage to the north coast from that to the west coast. Later we built this trail, putting
only enough work on it to enable us to get through with our outfit. With a reasonable expenditure this could be made into a good trail, as there is very little grade. I endeavoured to follow
the township line south, but had to swing over a mile east to avoid a ridge 1,400 feet high, both
slopes of which were heavily covered with windfalls and salal.
On the completion of these surveys we moved to Quatsino Sound, where we made a triangu-
lation survey of part of the West Arm and Rupert Arm. We also made various small surveys
and retraced several of the oldest surveys on the west coast. These surveys being run about
1872 were most difficult to pick up and follow, the country having been repeatedly swept by fire
and storms, and in that country of rank undergrowth marks soon become obliterated and posts
soon decay.
I was able to complete all the work outlined in my instructions, and I returned to Victoria
the latter part of October.
Physical Characteristics.
The country along the northern coast of the Island from the most northerly point as far
west as Cape Scott is rolling, with no high peaks and very few well-defined ridges. The surface
is broken by many knolls which rise to a height rarely exceeding 1,000 feet, and almost invariably
these knolls have smooth flat summits, upon which there is a light growth of scrub pine and
cedar. The soil appears to be of fair quality, being of a gravelly nature, and would doubtless
prove arable, but they are very difficult of access, as the hillsides are steep and covered with a
dense growth of timber and salal.
The entire country is heavily timbered, and excepting occasional areas of muskeg, is quite
expensive to clear, the cost running to about $150 or $250 per acre. As the climate is very wet
and the ground rather spongy, drainage is an important consideration.
Farther south around Holberg and along Quatsino Sound the surface is much more broken,
and the ridges rise to over 2.000 feet in many places. Only occasional stretches of level land
border Quatsino Sound, and in a comparatively short distance back the country is too rough and
rolling to be especially suited for agricultural pursuits.
Some eight years ago the north-west coast of the Island was swept by a storm of unusual
violence, with the result that in many places all the timber was blown down; especially is this
the case where the land slopes to the south-west. These windfalls are criss-crossed in many
places to a depth of 25 feet, and when it is remembered that in the meantime a thick second
growth of hemlock and fir has sprung up, a more impenetrable country can hardly be imagined.
At one point Quatsino Sound approaches very near to the east coast, Rupert Arm being only
six or seven miles from the other coast, and there is no high land between. A ten-mile foot-trail
connects the east coast at Hardy Bay with Quatsino Sound at Coal Harbour. L 64 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
Throughout the northern portion of the district the level land has the best soil, while as a
rule the side-hills have a very shallow soil. Bordering all the streams is a strip of very rich
bottom land, which in different streams varies from a narrow strip to a width of a mile or so.
Cache Creek in particular has a wide strip of good land, but unfortunately for settlers the entire
valley is held under timber licences. On all of this class of land the timber grows to a large
size, attaining a diameter of 4 or 5 feet, which makes the clearing a formidable task. The
balance of the arable lands have a rather peaty soil, which, holding the water, makes drainage
of first importance. This land when cleared and properly drained, and sweetened by the addition
of a little lime, becomes very productive. Some of the finest vegetables to be seen anywhere are
grown around Fisherman Bay and Cape Scott. While the timber on this class of land is not as
large as on the lowlands mentioned, yet it is expensive to clear, as it is heavily timbered with
red and yellow cedar and hemlock, with a thick undergrowth of salal.
Farther south the timber is somewhat lighter, and there are larger areas of muskeg, which
are capable of being cleared and drained. They are suited for hay and pasture, but the soil is
too shallow to permit much cultivation.
West from Holberg lies a fertile valley with a rich alluvial soil, which is heavily timbered
with large spruce, hemlock, and cedar. Nearly all of this valley has been taken up either by
settlers or under timber licences.
Around Quatsino the soil is much firmer, although the rainfall is about the same; while it
varies in different localities, yet as a whole it is a gravelly soil, especially adapted for fruitgrowing.    Clearing here is also expensive, there being a good percentage of fir, the stumps of
,which are difficult to deal with.
The northern portion of the Island around Cape Scott has been settled for over twenty years,
the original settlers being a colony of Danes. During the succeeding years a few new settlers
have arrived and the older settlers have moved away, so the population has not increased as
much as might be expected in a country settled so long. Of the original Danes there are only
two families remaining. In my opinion the greatest drawback to the settlement of the country
is the lack of transportation facilities; none of the coasting steamers will call, as there are no
harbours on the north coast and there is no protection from the open Pacific. The only means
of transportation is launches, which are far from adequate, the nearest port of call for steamers
being Shushartie Bay, twenty-five miles from Fisherman Bay.
From the north coast right through to Quatsino Sound, notwithstanding the fact that a large
percentage of the available land has been pre-empted, there are very few settlers; they having
done their improvements, have received their Crown grants and have then abandoned their
claims. At present no settler can make a living off his land, as there are no local markets fo1*
produce whatever, and it is out of the question to attempt to ship to the cities with the present
boat service. During the summer the settlers work on the Government roads or seek employment elsewhere. This season a large majority were engaged in fishing for the canneries at
Rivers Inlet, but on account of the wet weather the fishing was a failure.
There have been a few settlers around Quatsino for the past twenty years, and small areas
have been cleared and cultivated, indicating that the soil is very productive. From the whole-
district many of the settlers are now on active service.
The climate is typical of the west coast; the rainfall is heavy, being about 120 inches per-
annum. Most of the precipitation is during the winter months, while during July, August, and
September the weather as a rule is bright and dry. This season we had an unusual amount of
rain in July, and October was much below the average. Throughout the year the temperature
remains quite uniform; the summers are cool and the winters are mild. The snowfall is light
and soon disappears.
Although the portion of the Island north of Quatsino Sound is heavily timbered; the quality
of the timber is poor; red cedar, spruce, balsam, and hemlock are found throughout the district.. 7 Geo. 5 Northern Vancouver Island. L 65
Yellow cedar, which is so much in demand in the outside markets, grows here, but is so scattered
as to be of little commercial value. In connection with the timber must be mentioned the dense
growth of salal, which, near the shore, forms an almost impenetrable barrier, growing in a
tangled mass to a height of 12 or more feet.
Quatsino Sound marks the northern limit of the fir belt on the Island; on both sides of the
sound the country is timbered with merchantable fir, cedar, hemlock, and spruce. No yellow
cedar is to be seen here. Most of the country adjacent to the sound is held under either timber
licences or pulp leases.
In another year or two a large pulp-mill will be in operation on the South East Arm. At
present there are about a hundred men working clearing the site for the mill and building
a wharf. The same company is now operating a small sawmill near Quatsino, and it is their
intention to later erect a large mill at their plant.
During the summer the first shipment of logs from Quatsino Sound was made, a boom
containing 700,000 feet being taken around the north end of the Island and down to Vancouver.
Throughout this district game is very scarce; only a few deer are seen, and an occasional
bear or panther are shot. But the indications would point to an early increase in the number
of deer. In most of the streams trout-fishing is very good, and along the Coast a good halibut
bank affords occupation to a few fishermen.
The only portions of the country in which I was engaged that showed any promise of
mineral wealth was the vicinity of Quatsino Sound. Copper has been found at many points
here, and the present high price is stimulating prospecting and development. Considerable
development-work is being carried on at the mines near the South East Arm, and some of these
will soon be in a position to market their output. Iron has also been found in this locality, but
nothing at present is being done with it. Around Coal Harbour coal was discovered over fifty
years ago, and several large claims were acquired prior to 1872, when they were surveyed. A
little prospecting was done on these about ten years ago, but since that time they have not
been touched.
In the northern portion of this district the Government has constructed about seven miles
of wagon-road connecting Fisherman Bay and Cape Scott. Of late years it has been the policy
to use the appropriation to build 4-foot trails as they are required. Such a trail connects
Fisherman Bay and Cache Creek and Shushartie Bay; another connects the road at Fisherman
Bay with San Josef and Holberg. At Fisherman Bay there are two stores, post-office, and a
stopping-place; there are also post-offices at Cape Scott, Sea Otter Cove, and San Josef. All of
these are connected by the Dominion Government Telegraph, which touches nearly every settlement on the Island, and is being constructed to Cache Creek and Shushartie Bay at present.
At the mouth of Cache Creek is a store and post-office (Strandby). Agriculture forms the only
occupation of the people in this part of the district.
There is a store, post-office, and telegraph-station at Holberg, also a good wharf. From
Holberg west a wagon-road extends about ten miles up the valley. At present there are only
two or three families at Holberg and a very few in the valley. At Quatsino the only means of
transportation is by water, and there are many launches to be seen here. The Government has
built a good wharf, and leading to the wharf is about two miles of wagon-road. Business appears
to be very good around Quatsino, there being plenty of work at the mines or at the pulp-mill
and sawmill. Located here are two stores, a post-office, telegraph-office, and a stopping-place.
Opposite, on Limestone Island, is a licensed hotel and a cannery. Farther down the sound, at
Winter Harbour, is located a cannery for canning clams.
The C.P.R. steamer " Tees " makes two trips a month to Quatsino and Holberg, up the west
coast. In the winter this trip is not very popular, as this is the most exposed run of any of
the coasting vessels, and for almost the entire trip the steamer is exposed to the frequent storms
of the open Pacific,    There is a weekly boat service to Shushartie Bay, from which point con- L 66 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
nection can be made to Fisherman Bay by launch, and there are three boats a week to Hardy
Bay, from where Quatsino may be reached by travelling the ten miles of trail. I understand
that a wagon-road is soon to replace this trail, which will make this the better and quicker way
to reach Quatsino from Vancouver or Victoria.
I have, etc.,
Leroy S. Cokely, B.C.L.S., D.L.S.
By H. H. Browne.
November 1st, 1910.
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,-—I have the honour to submit the following report of the lands in the vicinity of
Quatsino Sound, which formed part of my work this year:—
Entrance Island.
This island was reserved for the Dominion Government, June 29th, 1905, as a site for a
lighthouse. It is about 25 acres in area, and its fairly level top is about 70 feet above the sea.
There is some good soil, and the keeper is able to grow all kinds of berries and vegetables with
splendid success. The island is difficult of access in rough weather, so much so that last winter
the keeper received no mail or supplies for nearly three months. It is a fixed light, visible for
fifteen miles.    Triangle Island light is just visible on the horizon to the westward.
Cape Parkins.
The cape is half a mile west of Entrance Island. The passage between, less than 15 chains
wide, can be used by small boats in fine weather, but it is not advisable to attempt it at.
high tide or in rough water, as there are several big rocks awash or just covered at that time.
The peninsula behind the cape is formed on the east by Forward Inlet and Browning Creek.
From Quatleo, at the head of the creek, there is a tidal bay running in to the south, from the
top of which it is only 60 chains across to Open Bay, on the ocean side. From the creek, at
the period of high water, boats of light draught can reach the dyke at the head of the bay.
The peninsula itself is composed of three mountains: Flat Top, 1,000 feet high; Entrance,
1,300 feet; and the cape itself, about 1,000 feet high. Between these are two passes; the
shortest and lowest one is opposite Robson Island and is about 10 chains wide and a mile
and a quarter long. There are some good alder bottoms here and the forest is open, but the
mountains are timbered with large hemlock, cedar, and spruce. On the east side there are
several good boat-landings, but there is only one on the west side, at Open Bay, and that is
only occasionally available. There is a stretch of over a mile of good beach south of Open Bay,
which is reached by the pass mentioned above, that has a narrow margin of good land just back
of the sand, but as there are a number of enormous spruce-trees on it, it might have to be
classified as timber land. Open Bay is much used by the halibut-boats as ail anchorage while
fishing off this Coast. In rough weather they seek shelter behind the islands in Forward Inlet,
while the whalers and larger ships go either to Winter Harbour or to the cannery at Koskeemo
From Amphitrite Point at Barkley Sound to Cape Scott the characteristic geographical
feature of a peninsula formed by an inlet running more or less north is to be found, such as
Ucluelet Arm, Sidney Inlet, Hesquiat Harbour, Tahsis Canal, Port Eliza, Forward Inlet, Sea
Otter Cove, and at Cape Scott by Goose Bay and the Lagoon, and again at the Sand Neck.
Koskeemo Bay.
From Lot 76, at the mouth of Mahatta River, a strip of land half a mile wide was
subdivided according to the township system, westward to Bold Bluff. As the mountains come
down to the sea very abruptly here, there is practically no agricultural land.   It is all very 7 Geo. 5 Quatsino Sound. L 67
densely covered with a poor grade of hemlock.    Bold Bluff has an elevation of slightly over
1,600 feet and is very precipitous.    Back of the bay the elevation is from 800 to 1,000 feet.
Forward Inlet to Koprino Harbour.
The traverse of the shore-line reveals very little available agricultural land, though there
are occasional beaches with a narrow strip of fairly good land in the three miles from Brown
Point to Boat Cove. Bedwell Islands are unimportant from this aspect. If the development of
the coal-measures which outcrop here should prove to be a profitable enterprise, these islands
would doubtless become valuable. A trail about two miles and a half long follows a low pass
from Koprino Harbour to Winter Harbour. The peninsula formed here is mountainous, with
elevations from 1,200 to 1,800 feet.    It is heavily timbered with hemlock.
General Remarks.
Throughout Quatsino Sound the mountains diminish in height on the north side all the way
to Holberg, and especially at Rupert Arm, while they maintain a constantly high elevation on
the south. The mountain system of the Island runs out here, and in a manner similar to that
at Graham Island, of the Queen Charlotte Group, and here, as there, the land slopes off into a
shallow sea to the north.
Agriculture at Quatsino Sound is, from the physical features of the country, confined to
small patches on the shore, which never reach the size of farms. But since both the soil and
climate are favourable the gardens and orchards do very well. It is to timber and mining
that the district must for some years look for its prosperity. And both of these industries are
beginning to flourish at the South East Arm. The large demand for copper and the high price
have made ores valuable now that could not be profitably worked when they were opened up a
few years ago. The long delay in starting work on the pulp lands seems to be at an end, as
operations on a large scale are now being carried on. All of this means good business for the
people of the whole north end of the Island.
The fishing in Quatsino Sound was a failure this year. The cannery at Koskeemo Bay has
not been operated for some years, owing to the constant dearth of fish. No sockeyes come to
these waters, but in good years the catch of cohoes, springs, and humps has more than paid
expenses, one may conjecture. There are no rivers here of any size, and the creeks, owing to
the dry summer, were too low for the fish to go up, so it Is supposed they went back to the sea.
As to halibut-fishing, I have been told that the fish were on their usual banks and in as large
numbers as ever, but that the tremendous number of dogfish, which live nearer to the surface
than the halibut, made it impossible to get the bait past them.
In August a big boom of fir logs was successfully towed around Cape Scott to Vancouver.
This was the first attempt, and now it is expected more logs will be sold. There is abundant
good fir in some parts of the sound, but hemlock is the predominating forest tree. Spruce and
cedar of very large size, belonging to an older forest than the hemlock, are plentiful.
The recurrence of the phonetic " kwa " in the place-names here, such as Qua-tsino, Qua-tleo,
Kwa-cheena (San Josef Bay), and probably also Kwa-prino and Kwa-skeemo, is the distinguishing mark of those who speak the Kwa-kiool language. South of Cape Cook the language of the
natives changes to what is sometimes called Nootka, where the distinguishing sign of those who
speak the common language is " aht," as in Chakeles-aht, Hesqui-aht, Clayoqu-aht, Nittin-aht,
Sech-aht, etc.
The Indians of Quatsino Sound are few in number, and live, according to the season, at
Koskeemo, Koprino, and at Hecate Cove, near the main settlement.    They seem prosperous.
I have, etc.,
H. H. Browne, B.C.L.S. L 68 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
By Fred Nash.
i September 30th, 1916.
G. II. Daivson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to report that I left Masset on July 11th to carry out surveys on
the south-eastern portion of Graham Island in accordance with your instructions dated June
20th, 1916.
In reports of previous seasons I have dealt in general with the resources and physical
character of the Queen Charlotte Islands, so in this report I propose to limit my remarks to
the development that has occurred since my last report of October 19th, 1915.
A large number of Indian and white fishermen were employed during the spring-salmon run,
both at North Island and on the west coast in the neighbourhood of Skidegate Inlet; the price
realized by the fishermen being from 4 to 8 cents per pound. On the completion of the spring-
salmon run the men were employed catching the " humpback," " dog," and " cohoe " species of
salmon. It is anticipated that each of the two canneries, Naden Harbour and Aliford Bay, will
pack 40,000 cases each by the end of the season.
The whaling-station at Naden Harbour was again operated successfully, as was also the
oilery at Skidegate. At the latter plant the oil is extracted from the livers of dogfish and
converted into a commercial product.
Four small mills were busy part of the year cutting spruce for export.
Roads and Tbails.
Although a great deal of improvement has been made to the existing roads and trails
throughout the island during the past summer and several new roads commenced, much remains
to be done to provide better connection between settlements and shipping-points. At present the
north and south ends of Graham Island are practically separated, the only means of travelling
between them being either by mail-steamer via Prince Rupert, or over the " Mexican Tom " Trail
from Port Clements, at the head of Masset Inlet, to-Tlell, on the east coast, whence a good wagon-
road connects with Skidegate Inlet. This trail is suitable for foot traffic only and in wet weather
is almost impassable.
Roads are under construction at Nadu and Woden which, when completed, will afford close
connections between the east coast settlements and Masset Inlet, besides opening up areas of good
country through which they are being located.
In spite of a backward spring, farmers have received good returns from their cultivated
areas. Creditable exhibitions of fruits, vegetables, and flowers were held at Lawn Hill and
Queen Charlotte. The " South-eastern District of Graham Island " was again successful at the
Prince Rupert Exhibition, winning the silver cup offered for the best district exhibit of farm
produce, including fruit. Much credit for this result is due to Mr. Richardson, the superintendent
of the experimental plot near Lawn Hill, who selected and took charge of the exhibit. This is
the fourth consecutive year that this district has proved the superiority of the island climate
over that of other northern portions of the Province.
The weather during last winter was much more severe than that of the average winter on
the islands. Stock suffered in consequence of the farmers not having put up sufficient feed to
meet the unusual conditions of deep snow and severe cold. Several head of young cattle were
killed by black bear In April and May. 7 Geo. 5 Vicinity of Skidegate Inlet, Graham Island. L 69
Sheep, hog, and poultry raising have received considerable attention, which has demonstrated
the suitability of the islands for these branches of farming.
The only development-work undertaken on Graham Island during the past year has been in
connection with the South-easter Mine near Skidegate.
On Moresby Island mining has reached a more advanced stage, and monthly shipments of
100 tons of ore are being made from the Ikeda Mine.
Prospecting with diamond-drills has been commenced by the Granby Consolidated Mining
and Smelting Company on the Swede Group of mineral claims near Lockeport.
No development has occurred in connection with either coal or oil fields during the past year.
While the fertility of the soil and climatic conditions have been proved eminently suitable
for general farming, many difficulties, both natural and artificial, must be overcome before the
farming capacities of the island can be fully realized. Special mention may be made of the
two main obstacles to quick development.
First: The scattered nature of the present settlement, which has made the adequate
provision of roads and trails a slow and expensive work. Without means of getting in supplies
or taking out produce, other than by back-packing, successful farming is obviously Impossible,
and it is only a matter of a few years or of a few months before the settler becomes discouraged
and throws up his pre-emption, leaving his buildings to decay and his improved land to revert
to its original condition.
Second: The cost of preparing sufficient ground to enable the settler to obtain his livelihood
from his land. Much of the land open to pre-emption on the islands, while not containing trees
of commercial value, is still heavily timbered. In other areas, where the clearing of the land
does not offer so much difficulty, the proper drainage of the country presents a problem that the
individual settler cannot solve.
The remedy for these conditions will probably be found in a comprehensive plan, preferably
under Government control, to assist the settler by clearing land by machinery, by cleaning out
watercourses which have become choked with log-jams, and by constructing main ditches where
the natural means of drainage is insufficient to prevent the land being flooded during the wet
season. Under a development system of this kind, and by limiting pre-emptions within its scope
to 40 acres, large areas of fertile land could be brought under cultivation at a minimum cost,
and a closer settlement with all its advantages of more and better roads, schools, and opportunities for social intercourse would result in a very rapid development of the islands.
Lots 2794 to 2808, surveyed by me this season, are situated on the south-eastern portion of
Graham Island, Lots 2794 to 2800 being to the north of the Skidegate Indian Reserve, while Lots
2801 to 2808 are to the west of it.
The land in both groups slopes to the sea from an undulating plateau at an elevation of
from 1,000 to 1,400 feet. Most of the land is heavily timbered, hemlock and spruce predominating.    Some 3,000 acres are held under timber licences.
There are a few small areas of the lower land which will be suitable for cultivation when
logged and cleared, but a great deal of the land is on too great a slope to be of agricultural value.
I have, etc.,
Fred. Nash, B.C.L.S. L 70 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
By J. C. A. Long.
October 6th, 1916
G. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—I have the honour to submit the following report upon the lands surveyed by me on
Graham Island during the season of 1916:—
Of the unsurveyed country lying between Masset Inlet and the east coast of Grafham Island,
I selected the northerly portion as being the most suitable for settlement; in this selection I took
into consideration the greater accessibility of the land and the fact that my survey would include
the greatest number of pre-emptions actually occupied.
The lands covered by my survey can be approached from Masset Inlet by the Woden River,
a settlement where there is a post-office, school, boat-building yard, a floating wharf, and good
From Woden River an excellent wagon-road runs easterly to Echo Lake, a distance of about
two miles and a half. Connecting with the road a good trail continues round the south end of
Echo Lake to the south-east corner of Lot 795, a further distance of a mile and three-quarters.
The central portion of this land is 'crossed by the trail from the east coast to the Woden
River, which joins the above-mentioned wagon-road about three-quarters of a mile from the
mouth of the Woden River. This is a good trail, and the distance from Masset Inlet to the west
boundary of my work is five miles and a half.
The southerly portion of this area is best approached from the Nadu River by following
the wagon-road running easterly for about three miles and continuing by foot-trail to the east
boundary of Lot 790, a total distance of five miles and a half.
The land surveyed by me comprises the valley of the headwaters of the Oeanda River, which
consists of two streams, the Bonehead from the north and Otter Creek from the south, which
unite in the centre of this area and flow away towards the south-east.
The valley is bounded on the east by a ridge extending from north to south along the east
boundaries of Lots 2127, 2130, 2133, and 2136. The westerly side of the valley is less clearly
defined, being mostly rolling country, more or less open in character. Considered as a whole,
this area is well suited for settlement.
The soil, though varying in different sections, consists of black muck with sand, gravel, or
clay subsoil, the sand and gravel predominating to the north and the clay to the south. A large
proportion of the land is open or lightly timbered muskeg land. An average type of this kind
of land may be found on M. O. Berg's pre-emption in the west half of Lot 2123. Mr. Berg has
had very satisfactory results the first year from the land, the only fertilizer he used being a
sprinkling of ashes. He showed me potatoes from his garden which for size and quality would
compare favourably with any.
In the southerly part of this area there is a fair proportion of land entirely free of under-
bush, the soil being a black clay loam with subsoil of clay and sand; the timber consisting of
tall second-growth pine, cedar, hemlock, and some spruce (averaging about 8 inches in diameter).
The land in these places is dry, the clearing being light and the soil excellent. Sections 2135,
2136, 2138, and 2139 each contain a considerable amount of this type of land.
Clearing and Drainage.
The growth of timber throughout the greater part of this country is light and land could
be cleared at small expense. In the muskeg land drainage and cultivation is all that is necessary.
Ditching by hand involves a good deal of unpleasant labour, but considerably more open land
can be reclaimed by ditching than even lightly timbered land can be cleared in the same period.
On the pre-emption I have previously referred to Mr. Berg has already ditched and thoroughly
drained about 8 acres in addition to his other improvements since October, 1914. 7 Geo. 5 Photo-topographical Survey in Okanagan Valley. L 71
With the exception of some good red cedar on the slopes of the hills to the east of Lots 2133
and 2136 and of some spruce in the Oeanda River Valley, there is no timber of commercial value
in this area.
The agricultural possibilities of Graham Island generally, of which the area surveyed by
me is typical, have already been amply demonstrated, both as to productiveness of the soil and
suitability of the climate. The Queen Charlotte Islands succeeded once again in carrying away
the cup for the fourth year in succession at the Prince Rupert Exhibition for the best district
display in Northern British Columbia of garden produce and fruit in a competition that was
keenly contested.
Still, under existing conditions, it seems impossible for the settler to make a living from the
land. These conditions, which are, of course, not peculiar to Graham Island, are a matter quite
apart from the fertility of the soil and the ability of the settler to produce. On Graham Island
there is an immense tract of land suitable for agriculture from which excellent results have been
obtained, and capable of supporting a large population. It has been shown to be pre-eminently
suited for dairying and stock-raising.
As individual effort has failed to bring about any appreciable result, the development of the
island could be materially assisted by :•—■
(1.) Government assistance in work that cannot be handled to advantage by the individual,
such as ditching, by machinery and clearing by modern appliances.
(2.) Construction of roads by the most efficient methods, substituting machinery for hand-
labour and centralizing such work on one portion of the island, capable of being extended from
time to time as required.
(3.) By organizing the district along the lines of those branches of agriculture or husbandry
most adapted to the island, thus providing the necessary direction of effort to the individual
settler, also giving the necessary start to an industry in the island that in time would build
(4.) By assisting settlers to acquire stock and purchase such necessaries as implements, wire
fencing, etc., at a minimum cost.
It is reasonable to expect an influx of settlers to the Queen Charlotte Islands in the course
of the next few years, and some effort along these lines should be made as soon as possible that'
things may be in readiness, or at least some general policy formulated, and thus avoid a repetition
of past failures.
I have, etc.,
J. C. A. Long, B.C.L.S.
By R. D. McCoVW.
November 30th, 1916.
G. II. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—In accordance with your instructions of June 2nd last, I continued the photo-
topographical survey of the Okanagan Valley during the past summer, and now have the honour
to report upon my operations in this connection.
The same instrumental outfit was used again, the small transit and camera having been
loaned by Dr. Deville, Surveyor-General of Dominion Lands. Isochrornatic plates were used this
year in place of the panchromatic, which could not be obtained in time. Some 45 dozen were
used all told, and the results obtained were very good.
The appropriation at my disposal was again limited and operations were confined entirely
to the east side of the Okanagan Valley, which it was desired I should complete if possible.
Of course, in order to complete the east side of the valley, several triangulation and camera
stations were required on the west side of the lake. These were located in suitable positions,
where good views were obtainable facing east. L 72 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
I left Victoria on June 7th, and commenced the organization of party immediately upon my
arrival at Kelowna. I found it necessary to renew two primary signals which had been removed
without doubt by meddlers. One of my assistants had enlisted for overseas service and I did
not fill his position, so the number of men was reduced by one. I found this inconvenient at
times when there was much work at a triangulation station, so that a third man who is able
to take instrumental readings is really necessary.
Triangulation s.
Previous reports have given descriptions of the triangulation systems and the topographical
methods used, and as the same systems and methods were continued, there is little to add now.
I mentioned last year that several triangulation stations of the Geological Survey of Canada
were incorporated in my primary system. This year further stations were read and formed
the only primary stations used as the system of control, so that it was not necessary for me
to erect new primary signals. Considerable time was saved by this. A tie was made by
triangulation to the Armstrong Astronomical Station, erected by the Dominion Government.
When all reductions are made this connection will likely throw some light upon the difference
found last year in longitude between the Penticton base and the Geological Survey positions.
I mentioned this in my last year's report as being some 18 seconds of arc. Photographic work
went on simultaneously with the triangulations, and numerous connections were made to land-
survey monuments and other points.
Long Lake Valley-.
Everything was ready for active field-work on June 13th, and the Long Lake Valley was
the scene of our first operations, the initial camp being located at Duck Lake. For the next
ten days work was pushed vigorously, in order to utilize to the full extent a splendidly clear
atmosphere then existing. The contour and featuring of the ridges on each side of the valley
rendered them readily adaptable to camera stations. In this locality teams were hired when
required for moving camp, the Vernon-Kelowna Road being the base of travel. From Kelowna
to the south end of Woods Lake the valley-bottom is quite flat, with rolling benches rising on
eacli side. Tobacco has been grown south of Ellison Lake, but at present the industry is not
in operation. Hay in the bottom and fruit on the rolling benches seem to do well as long as
water can be obtained. Oyama is picturesquely situated at the " Railroad," a strip of land
separating Woods Lake from Long Lake. An artificial boat-channel joins the two. I notice
that on recent maps these two lakes are included as Long Lake. They are really separate and
distinct. Woods Lake, before the channel was cut, was some 4 or 5 feet higher than Long
Lake. A long ridge separates Long Lake from Okanagan Lake. Much of this is open grass
land, and cultivation is being carried on almost on the summit without irrigation. One triangulation station on this ridge was surrounded by grain-fields. The sources of irrigation for the
Long Lake Valley and Okanagan Centre lands lie in the plateau country to the east, and are
two natural reservoirs—Beaver Lake and Island Lake. The irrigation systems from these are
controlled by the Okanagan Valley Land Company for Beaver Lake, and the Woods Lake Water
Company and Long Lake Irrigation Company for Island Lake. There is abundance of pasture
land on the hills throughout, but the number of stock is small, especially to the west, where water
is scarce.
Plateau between Mission Creek and Coldstream Creek.
When Long Lake Valley was completed as far as then necessary, the pack-horses were sent
for and camp moved to the plateau country to the east, and which terminates in the Mission
Plateau at the extreme east, mentioned in my last year's report. This area contains much flat
country running about 4,000 feet in elevation, and again rises in long flat ridges to over 6,000
feet. There are many small hills and undulating ridges separating numerous lakes and marshes,
and forming watersheds for the main reservoirs used in the irrigation systems which head in this
plateau. The following main streams, tributary to the Okanagan basin, head in this plateau:
Mission Creek, North Forks of Mission Creek, Scotty Creek, Kelowna (Mill) Creek, Vernon
(Torrent) Creek, Falls Creek, Deer Creek, Duteau (Jones) Creek, a tributary of the Shuswap
basin, also heads in this plateau. A reference to the topographical map will show the location
of these streams.    One main ridge stretches across the north-west part of the plateau and 7 Geo. 5 Photo-topographical Survey in Okanagan Valley. L 73
takes the name of Long Mountain. A triangulation station of the Geological Survey of Canada
is located on the highest point. In dealing with this extensive area we were fortunate in
securing stations which commanded very fair views of the various parts.
The vicinity of Beaver Lake was the area first dealt with. It might here be noted that
a good pack-trail extends from the wagon-road up Vernon Creek to Beaver Lake. Vernon
(Torrent) Creek flows westerly out of the lake and empties into Ellison Lake, which in turn
drains northerly to Woods Lake. The watershed draining to Beaver Lake has several small
lakes and marshes, with some swamps. The area is almost totally covered with young jack-
pine, with some spruce, balsam, and cedar. The areas showing recent burn are small. From
the Beaver Lake Trail we located a trail southerly through almost open burn to Posthill Lake,
the storage-reservoir of the Central Okanagan Land Company, Limited. This is an artificial
reservoir retained by a dam of quite considerable proportions. Kelowna (Mill) Creek heads
here and flows first westerly into the Long Lake Valley, and thence southerly and westerly into
Okanagan Lake at Kelowna. Much of the watershed about Posthill Lake has been damaged
by Are and parts are swept clean. Along the upper part of Kelowna Creek the growth of spruce,
balsam, and jack-pine is quite thick, and a large cedar-swamp exists south of Posthill Lake.
Several small lakes and one large beaver meadow are tributary to this system. Scotty Creek
heads to the south of Kelowna Creek, and is tributary thereto, making its junction in the wide
valley in which lies Rutland. A few small lakes in a fairly well-timbered watershed are the
main sources of its water-supply.
The Belgo-Canadian Company's reservoir on the North Fork of Mission Creek was mentioned
last year. The entire watershed, not then completed, is now fully done. The watershed of the
main Mission Creek was also completed this year. The Geological Survey has a station on
Buck Hill (local name), near the headwaters. This station was not read last year on account
of the signal being damaged, and so could not be seen, although the conical top of the hill was
visible many times. My report of last year described the Mission Plateau at the headwaters
of Mission Creek in so far as last year's work applied. The balance of the area surveyed this
year is very similar, except that the open areas are not as extensive, much of the country not
having been fire-swept. Buck Hill is on the east limit of the watershed of Okanagan Lake,
which in this part is the west watershed of the Shuswap River. The plateau continues considerably farther east than the height of land dividing the two. There is generally a good
growth of grass all through the timber of the lower altitudes and in marshes, which should
make good summer-feeding grounds.
A large portion of the country above mentioned was done from a base camp at Aberdeen
Lake. This is one of numerous lakes of various sizes draining to Duteau (Jones) Creek, which
is properly a tributary of the waters to the Shuswap River. The White Valley Irrigation
Company has Aberdeen Lake for a storage-reservoir. Duteau Creek is tapped fairly low down,
and the Grey Canal carries water for miles, irrigating large areas on all sides of Vernon. The
watershed of this system belongs properly to the Shuswap basin, but sufficient information
has been gathered to show the features of this area fairly correct, since much of the water
is directed to the Okanagan Valley. Aberdeen Lake is a reservoir of great capacity, and the
watershed of Duteau Creek is large and generally well timbered.
Valley of Coldstream Creek.
The Valley of Coldstream Creek (or White Valley, as it is locally known) was easily
controlled by triangulation, and but few camera stations were necessary. This valley is of
a low altitude and extends east from Vernon towards Lumby. The divide between the Shuswap
and Okanagan watersheds is situated a short distance east of Lavington—a post-office about
nine miles east of Vernon. Coldstream Creek is not a large stream. It rises to the north in
the mountain mass south of Aberdeen Mountain. The water is of excellent quality, and the
Municipality of Coldstream uses it for domestic water. The system is piped from a reservoir
about a mile north of the main valley. Most of the valley-bottom is under cultivation, and it
would seem that this portion of the Okanagan Valley is in the middle wet belt, judging from
the growth of wild vegetation and timber. Fruit and grain do extremely well, irrigation being
supplied by the Grey Canal, which follows the contour of the north slope and by the south canal
on the south slope. The large holding of the Coldstream Estates Company, known as the
Coldstream Ranch, is situated near Vernon.    This was formerly the property of Lord Aberdeen. L 74 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
From Coldstream Creek we moved south up a very steep pack-trail to the north-west part
of the large plateau mentioned previously. The watersheds of two main lakes were completed
on this trip. Island Lake, lying to the north-west of Long Mountain, has been mentioned before
as supplying irrigation-water to the Long Lake Valley. Falls Creek flows or falls out of Island
Lake, with an outlet into Long Lake near Oyama. The watershed of Island Lake is very well
timbered, with the usual jack-pine, spruce, and balsam. In the same valley as Island Lake
and farther north is a reservoir controlled by the Coldstream Estates Company. Locally this
is called King Edward Lake, and Deer Creek flows northerly out of it, joining Coldstream Creek
at the Coldstream Ranch. The watershed of this lake is again well timbered, and the whole
area is very similar in character to the south part of the plateau.
Main Valley, Okanagan Landing to Armstrong.
On August 16th camp was moved to Okanagan Landing, and from here stations were occupied
on the long bare ridge extending to the west of Vernon. We also reached two stations on the
west side of Okanagan Lake in the vicinity of Whiteman and Equesis Creeks, using a launch to-
cross the lake. Good views were obtained in all the necessary directions and the country about
Vernon is well portrayed. The Vernon Military Camp looms up well in several views. Rain
delayed matters for two days during this time, but the delay was repaid by an exceptionally
clear atmosphere following.
The next base of operations was in the vicinity of Larkin. Camera stations were occupied
overlooking the valley between Vernon and Armstrong, and the triangulations extended to the
Astronomical Station at Armstrong. A large portion of the area between Okanagan Landing
and Larkin is irrigated from the Grey Canal, which crosses the valley through a siphon at the
north end of Swan Lake, and then follows the contour of the slope west of Vernon in a southerly
direction, the waste running into Okanagan Lake near the Landing. From Larkin north, irrigation does not seem to be used to such a great extent. The soil differs here and grain is-
grown more extensively. Then at Armstrong, in the rich soil in the bottoms, is grown the celery
which gives this district a name. The slopes on each side of the main valley around Vernon are
in the form of bare rolling hills, and this condition extends north to Larkin.
Aberdeen Mountain and B.X. Creek.
On August 29th the first camp on B.X. Creek was located about six miles from Vernon.
Smoke appeared, and as the atmosphere became too smoky no work could be done at once, so
we continued on to the top of Aberdeen Mountain and remained there until September 6th.
Delays were again caused by smoke and bad weather. The Geological Survey station on top.
of this mountain was occupied and several camera stations located along the ridge. The top-
of Aberdeen Mountain is bare, fire having swept a large area in the vicinity years ago. A
splendid view is obtained in all directions from the summit, so that the Forestry Branch have-
located a look-out station there. The Silver Star Mineral Claim is located near the top. Two
old shafts were examined. The work done was not extensive, however. Silver-bearing galena
seems to be the chief deposit. Much graphitic schist was noticed in the output. B.X. Creek,
which heads on Aberdeen Mountain, flows south-westerly towards Vernon and empties into
Swan Lake, which in turn drains to Okanagan Lake at Okanagan Landing. The City of Vernon
uses B.X. Creek as the source of its water-supply. A wagon-road extends up the north side
of the creek for about ten miles. Settlers' houses are seen right to the end, the last one being
at quite a high altitude. The character of the country in this locality is very different to that
of the plateau to the south. The catchment-basins at the sources of the streams are usually very
small, and direct seepage seems to be the main source of the water-supply. The growth of
huckleberries on the summit of the whole range is very profuse.
West Side of Lake.
On September 11th the party and equipment were moved from B.X. Creek by team to
Okanagan Landing, and thence by C.P.R. S.S. " York " to Ewing's Landing, near which a camp
was located. The pack-horses were sent by road around the north end of Okanagan Lake, a
distance of some thirty miles. During the next ten days stations on the west side of the lake
were occupied to complete camera and triangulation work.    Primary station No. 13, used last 7 Geo. 5 Photo-topographical Survey in Okanagan Valley. L 75
year, was again occupied, and further instrumental readings and photographs were taken. On
September 19th we moved up Shorts Creek to Terrace Mountain. This is another station of
the Geological Survey to which readings had been taken all summer. Moving-day was very
smoky, but the day following was clear in the morning, and enabled us to get our work completed
before the smoke rolled in again in the afternoon.
This completed the field-work laid out for the season, so the outfits were sent to Kelowna
and the men paid off. Storage was arranged for the camp and pack equipments, and the horses
were sent out to winter quarters. After obtaining information at Vernon regarding various
matters connected with the map-work to follow, I left for Victoria on September 26th.
Climatic Conditions.
The previous winter, as almost every one in British Columbia knows, was severe, and the
Okanagan Valley was no exception. Fruit-trees suffered all over, and in some cases almost
entire orchards were killed. In the high altitudes the snowfall was extremely heavy, and in
the back country patches of snow still remained in the middle of July. The flow-off was
gradual and the reservoirs filled early. The spring was dry and cool and all vegetation was
backward. The period from June 25th to July 23rd was very wet in the plateau country, and
from reports much rain fell in the valleys. The cool weather continued, with occasional warm
spells. From July 23rd to August 18th raiu occurred in spells, with usually cool weather.
Extremely hot weather prevailed from August 19th to September 2nd. Smoke appeared during
this period, and several days' delay was caused by this nuisance. Rain about September 6th
and 7th cleared away the smoke and warm weather continued until camp was broken up.
Taken as a whole, the atmospheric conditions during the past season were the best in three
seasons for photo-topographical work.
Active work in the field was carried on from June 13th to September 21st, during which
time the following stations were occupied: Primary triangulation stations, 5; secondary
triangulation stations, 12; photographic stations, 70. The total number of camera stations as
grouped about a main photographic station is about 150. In addition, a number of connections
were made to land-survey monuments and to the line of the Canadian Pacific Railway between
Armstrong and Okanagan Landing. A connection was also made to the Dominion Government
Astronomical Station at Armstrong. Some of the topography in the plateau country is dependent
upon sketch-work extended from the triangulation stations by my assistant, T. Rognaas, CE.
Little has been said about timber, as the timber plan will show the various varieties in their
respective areas. It might be mentioned, however, that tamarack becomes very numerous to
the north, and on the south slope of Coldstream Creek Valley and in the Aberdeen Mountain
area there are forests of fine tamarack and fir. Up B.X. Creek a good deal of logging has been
done. Cedar occurs usually in creek-bottoms and in many swamps, and in parts reaches a good
Pack-trails will be shown on the topographical map. The main trails used were as follows:
(1) From Belgo Reservoir to Aberdeen Lake, to road in Coldstream Creek Valley; (2) from road
at Duck Lake to Beaver Lake east, to join trail No. 1; (3) from main Vernon-Kelowna Road up
Kelowna Creek to Posthill Lake; (4) from Coldstream Ranch to King Edward Lake; (5) from
Long Lake to Island Lake (bad) ; (6) from end of B.X. Creek Road to look-out station, Aberdeen
Mountain; (7) up Shorts Creek to Terrace Mountain. The system of roads leading out of
Vernon is worthy of special comment, good roads leading to Armstrong, Kamloops, Lumby,
Kelowna, and Whiteman Creek, as well as many laterals to the various settlements.
Very little game was seen during the summer, although the signs would indicate that there
is plenty back from the more settled areas. In the plateau country mule-deer seem to be
plentiful, and black bear, with grizzlies and silver-tips, in the more remote parts. Towards
Coldstream Creek Valley, back of Blue Nose Mountain, the grizzlies are known to come close
to settlers' homes. About Aberdeen Mountain black bear are numerous, lured there no doubt
by the huckleberries.    Mountain-lions inhabit this area also and come down close to Vernon L 76 Report of the Minister of Lands.' 1917
at times. Small game abounds all over in the form of grouse and rabbits. Beaver are fairly
plentiful in the plateau country; other small fur-bearing animals are pretty well trapped out,
although a few are still taken. Many of the lakes in the plateau abound in trout, and the
fishing is good. Aberdeen Lake is very dear to Vernon and vicinity for this sport. Fishing is
also good in Long and Okanagan Lakes for the larger trout.
The result of the season's work is being laid down on a map drawn to the natural scale
e-f 1: 40,000, with contour intervals of 100 feet. Land-ties and triangulations are shown upon a
separate sheet. A timber plan will also be submitted, showing timbered, open, cultivated, and
burnt areas. As the office-work is slow and tedious, it will be some time before these maps are
■complete. Accompanying this report are a few photographs picked here and there throughout
the work.
I have, etc.,
R. D. McCaw, B.C.L.S.
By Arthur O. Wheeler.
December 5th, 1916.
tr. H. Dawson, Esq.,
Surveyor-General, Victoria, B.C.
Sir,—During the past season of 1916 the survey field-work of the Boundary Commission was
carried on as usual, R. W. Cautley, D.L. and A.L.S., representing the Dominion and Alberta
Governments, and A. O. Wheeler, D.L. and B.C.L.S., the British Columbia Government. Mr.
Cautley continued the survey of the boundary and the placing of monuments in the passes, and
Mr. Wheeler the topographical survey of the watershed between the passes and the placing of
monuments where brass bolts were set at points unsuitable for concrete monuments or above
As in previous years, Dr. E. Deville, Surveyor-General of Dominion Lands, kindly loaned the
survey cameras, transit theodolites, and other instruments necessary to carry on the work. The
cameras and mountain transits in use by the topographical division have been specially designed
by him for surveys of this nature. Wrattan & Wainwright's panchromatic plates were used for
photographing and were found to give most excellent results.
Scope of Work.
Owing to a very heavy snowfall the previous winter the season opened late, and practically
the whole month of June was spent in an endeavour to reach and break through the snow lying
on the passes which had to be crossed.
Kananaskis Pass was the first to be visited, and this was done by Mr. Cautley on snow-shoes
early in July. He examined the pass and found it to -be a narrow gap between the peaks, lying
at an altitude above timber-line close on 7,700 feet from sea-level. The approaches on both
sides are very steep, and it was considered that there would be no adequate advantage to repay
the cost of a monument survey, which consequently was not made.
The great bodies of snow, when melting, caused very high water in the streams, making
the trails difficult and dangerous to travel. Mr. Cautley was unfortunate through having his
nead packer and two horses drowned in Kananaskis River from this cause.
Three passes were surveyed and monumented in rotation northward—viz., Palliser Pass,
White Man Pass, and Assiniboine Pass—thus completing the survey of the passes between the
International Boundary and the main transcontinental line of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
In addition, Mr. Cautley made an examination of Howse Pass, on the north side of the Canadian
Pacific Railway, to ascertain the facilities for getting in supplies and carrying on the work
there next season. 7 Geo. 5 Interprovincial Boundary. L 77
Topographical Division.
The topographical division, having first made at Banff the necessary tests of survey cameras
and for speed of the plates used in photography, went into camp on June 5th. It took from
then until June 21st to get over the pass between Banff and the Spray Lakes, and to dig out
a passage for the pack-train through Mud Lake Pass to the Kananaskis Lakes, where six miles
of snow, in places more than 5 feet deep, had to be shovelled. The party then travelled over
Elk Pass and continued the work where it had stopped the previous season. The division was
composed of two sub-parties, which worked together or separately as the occasion demanded.
Elk Valley and Highwood River.
Before extending the survey along the watershed from Elk Pass to Kananaskis Pass, a
party under Mr. Campbell, D.L.S., my chief assistant, descended the Elk Valley and closed a
gap in the work in the vicinity of Roscoe Pass at the head of Fording River. He then carried
the work along the east side of the watershed northward up the valleys of Highwood River and
its tributary, Storm Creek, to High-wood Pass between the latter stream and Pocatera Creek.
Both streams are on the eastern side of the watershed.
The other party, under my own direction, completed the work in the Elk Valley to Elk Pass.
For description of the survey of Elk Pass see my report to you of December 24th, 1915.
While at Elk Pass, brass bolt 8 M was placed on the watershed at the summit of the high
limestone peak on the west side of the pass and a rock cairn built over it. This could not be
done in 1915 owing to the ice-bound condition of the peak. The summit was now approached
from the west side and successfully attained. The work here was completed on July 31st.
Twenty triangulation and camera stations were occupied.
Elk Pass to Kananaskis Pass.
At Elk Pass the* watershed turns from a general north-west direction to a very erratic
westerly one, and, farther on, south-westerly to a high snow-clad peak which is shown on
Dr. G. M. Dawson's map of the Rockies (1886) as Mount Fox. It then assumes a general
north-westerly course to Kananaskis Pass.
South-west of Elk Pass two beautiful lakes of a wonderful shade of blue collect the flow
from surrounding glaciers and form the main source of Elk River. The upper one is about
two miles long by half a mile wide; the other is much smaller. To survey the watershed it
was necessary to raft a camp to the head of the upper lake.
North of Mount Fox the watershed was approached by a rough pack-trail from the upper
end of Lower Kananaskis Lake, following the north shore of Upper Kananaskis Lake and the
stream flowing to it from the pass. It is a region of high snow-clad peaks containing many
snow-fields and glaciers, and the watershed was reached with considerable difficulty.
Kananaskis Pass.
Seven miles from Lower Kananaskis Lake the stream above mentioned is divided in two
branches. A pack-trail leads up the valley of each branch, but the main trail and pass referred
to by Captain Palliser in his journal as having been traversed by him in 1858 is the north one.
About half a mile beyond the junction of the streams the trail ascends a very steep hillside
for, probably, 2,000 feet; then, gradually ascending, winds through open grassy alp-lands, mingled
with groves of spruce, balsam, and larch, to the summit of the pass, which is just beyond timber-
line at an altitude of about 7,690 feet above sea-level. There are a number of picturesque little
lakes, one of which lies almost at the summit on the Alberta side and but a few feet lower. The
main flow of the stream is in a deep trough lying east of the pass, and has its source in a glacial
amphitheatre several miles farther north.
The pass is surrounded by bold, striking peaks presenting a number of glaciers on their
sides. The western slope falls very steeply, direct from the summit, for about 2,000 feet, and
the trail corkscrews down the steep descent, eventually, at a distance of about four miles, joining
the trail leading down the Palliser River Valley.
The trail up the south branch of the stream also leads to a pass over the watershed. It is
a rough trail and reaches the summit by a steep rocky ascent.    At the top of the ascent is 8 L 78 Report of the Minister of Lands. 1917
large lake between two and three miles in extent. A mile farther on lies the summit, situated
some distance below timber-line at an altitude of approximately 7,475 feet. Another picturesque
little lake is met with on the western side of the summit, and the trail follows the bed of the
stream flowing from it through a rocky gorge and zigzags down a steep shale slope, joining the
Palliser River about a mile below that over the north pass. The trail is of Indian origin and
very indistinct. The pass is enclosed by bold, snowy peaks reaching to over 10,000 feet above
sea-level, and the scenery is wild and awe-inspiring.
The gaps in the mountain ranges over which these two passes lead are narrow, and the
approaches in both directions so steep and difficult that it was considered by the Commissioners
inadvisable to make a monument survey, in view of the fact that their future use as thoroughfares was problematical. They have been designated, respectively, as North and South Kananaskis Passes.
The north pass was reached by one party on August Sth and work concluded at the south
pass on the 22nd. On the 18th 2 feet of snow fell, which stopped the work for three days.
Meanwhile, main camp had been moved to the Palliser River below the north pass, and the
other party had surveyed the watershed on the western side from the Palliser River camp to
Mount Fox, referred to above.
Fifteen triangulation and camera stations were occupied to complete this section of the
Palliser Pass.
On August 24th a move was made for the summit of Palliser Pass, some five miles distant.
The valley of Palliser River is filled with old brulS, and much timber, which has been of large
size, lies heaped in a maze of windfall, criss-crossed in every direction. On this account travel
over the existing trail is rough and difficult. The approach from the south is steep. The pass
lies at an altitude of about 7,100 feet, well below timber-line. Notwithstanding the fact that fire
has done much to spoil the southern slopes, it is one of the most beautiful yet met with; open
grassy meadows, groves of conifers, and several sky-blue glacial lakes lie amidst a setting of
high snowy peaks and fine ice-falls. A great massif, shown on Dr. Dawson's 1886 map as Mount
Robinson, stands directly at the eastern side of the summit of the pass. It must be close to
11,000 feet in altitude, and is seen from many directions as a prominent landmark.
Mr. Cautley's division had completed the monument survey and had left for Assiniboine Pass
when we arrived. Five concrete monuments had been erected, and we placed three brass bolts
with cairns over them on points above timber-line. Six triangulation and camera stations were
occupied and the survey of the pass concluded on August 27th, both parties working here
Palliser Pass to White Man Pass.
The north slopes of Palliser Pass are also covered by brule, but of a more open nature.
A steep descent of 1,000 to 1,500 feet leads to a valley with a wide meadow-land bottom, which
holds one of the branches forming the headwaters of the Spray River. It continues in such
fashion for about five miles, when it changes, first into brule and then green timber, until a
junction is formed with the branch stream flowing from White Man Pass.
The watershed-line follows the crests of a high ridge of peaks bordering the west side of
the valley for a considerable distance, and then turns westward to White Man Pass. Some four
miles north-west of the summit of Palliser Pass another and much lower pass over the watershed
opens directly through this ridge. The pass is traversed by an old Indian trail which, branching
from the main trail to Palliser Pass, leads to a delightfully picturesque and highly coloured
lake that lies practically at its summit, the watershed ridge being less than an eighth of a mile
beyond and only some 20 feet higher than the lake-level. This little pass lies well in green
timber and cannot be much more than 6,000 feet above sea-level. It separates the water draining
to Spray River from that draining either to Cross River or else direct to Kootenay River; the
extent of the survey did not allow us to ascertain which, but a deeply indented and heavily
timbered valley bore in a south-westerly direction until lost in a maze of peaks and tributary
valleys. The approach on the east side is easy, and that on the west does not seem to present
any very abrupt descent. The lake is about three-quarters of a mile long by half a mile wide.
The summit of the pass is a narrow gap between steep mountain-slopes, and no special purpose
would have been served by making a monument survey of it. 7 Geo. 5 Interprovincial Boundary. L 79
It required the occupation of five stations to obtain data to map the watershed between
Palliser and White Man Passes.
White Man Pass.
The knowledge of White Man Pass dates back to 1841, when it is said to have been first
crossed by a party of emigrants. It is also said to have been crossed by the Rev. Father P. J.
de Smet in 1845. A well-beaten trail leads across it, and there are many signs of its having
been much used by Indians in the early days.
From the junction of the branches of the Spray River flowing from White Man and Palliser
Passes to White Man Pass the distance is about five miles. The summit is reached by a very-
steep ascent of 1,000 to 1,200 feet. A delightful little lake rests in the open alp-lands at the
top of the ascent, and the height of land lies about a quarter of a mile farther on. The pass
divides the waters flowing to Spray River on the north-east and Cross River on the south-west.
The Cross River side presents no very steep approach. The altitude of the pass is about 7,100
feet above sea-level.
The party arrived on September 2nd, but snowfalls and general bad weather prevented any
work being done until the 6th. The work here was completed on the Sth. Mr. Cautley had done
the monumenting prior to that done at tlje Palliser Pass. Four concrete monuments were erected
and four brass bolts with cairns placed at points on the watershed above timber-line.
White Man Pass to Assiniboine Pass.
The topographical division now travelled down the south branch of Spray River to the main
trail from Banff to Mount Assiniboine and up the valley of Bryant Creek, which is the west
branch of Spray River. For many miles the trail, a very good one, leads through heavy brule,
which each year litters the trail with fallen trees. Mr. Cautley, who had preceded us, had cut
out all the logs and the travelling was easy. On the way two stations were occupied on the
north side of the valley where it lay close to the line of the watershed.
Assiniboine Pass.
We arrived at Assiniboine Pass on September 13th and found Mr. Cautley's division busy
with the monument survey. At a previous date the Commissioners had met here and agreed
upon the locations of the monuments. Three camera stations were occupied at the pass to
elaborate the survey made in 1913.
On September 15th a party travelled fifteen miles down the North Fork of Cross River and
occupied three stations west and south of Mount Assiniboine to obtain data to map that section
of the watershed. Mount Assiniboine is the most prominent peak over which the watershed-line
passes. It rises to an altitude of 11,870 feet above the sea and is seen high above all other
peaks from many miles away in every direction.
September 18th the party returned to the pass, and from then until the 21st was busy
placing brass bolts and building cairns over them. Six concrete monuments were erected by
Mr. Cautley's division and four brass bolts and cairns were placed by the topographical division
at points on the watershed above timber-line.
The Assiniboine Pass and vicinity are very beautiful. There are wide stretches of open
alp-lands mingled with groves and belts of spruce, balsam, and larch. Fifteen or more lakes,
some of large size and all of wonderful blue and green colour, surround the group of mountains
of which Assiniboine is the central massif. Snow-fields, glaciers, and ice-falls are on all sides,
and as a scenic asset to the country the region cannot be surpassed. Tourists from all over the
world visit it yearly, and the number will greatly increase in the future.
Field-work closed.
Mr. Cautley completed work at Assiniboine Pass on September 15th and paid off his party
shortly after. He then, with one man, visited the Howse Pass to ascertain its requirements for
survey. ,
On September 22nd the topographical division started for Banff. On the 23rd a party went
up Mud Lake Valley and occupied a final station in connection with the watershed. On the 24th
we arrived at Banff, and all hands were paid off on the 26th. There is much bituminous coal in the Elk River Valley. Prospects for it are seen in many
places, and outcrops at the crests of many of the ridges. A wagon-road from Michel, on the-
Crowsnest branch of the Canadian Pacific Railway, leads up the valley three miles beyond
Aldridge Creek, and a number of camps with good log buildings, bunk-houses, stables, etc., are
met with at intervals. From Weary Creek camp to the summit of Elk Pass a fair pack-trail
has been opened up and considerable travel passes back and forth. The Grain Belt Construction
and Development Company has surveyed a railway-location over the pass and down the valley.
No other minerals were seen in the tract covered by the season's operations.
In the Elk Valley there is an appreciable percentage of green timber, but none of large size.
Extensive tracts there have been burned over. In the Highwood and Storm Creek Valleys the
predominating features are brule and windfall, and the patches of green timber are of small
size. Large timber, spruce and larch, is seen on the approaches to and at the summit of Assiniboine Pass. The majority of the valleys on the western slopes of the watershed contain stretches
of green timber, but it is generally of small size, and bodies of merchantable timber are scarce.
A regrettable feature is found in the numerous areas of brule, and in these fire-destroyed tracts
are seen standing and fallen trees of 3 and 4 feet in diameter. It is a sad pity that so much
serviceable timber has been lost. Nor can it be attributed, in the majority of cases, to other
than natural causes. While at White Man Pass during a fierce thunder storm the lightning
struck an isolated green spruce-tree within 20 feet of Mr. Cautley's tent and set fire to it, causing
it to blaze upward in a column of flame reaching high above the tree-top. The incident proved
that many of the fires that have destroyed vast tracts of timber have been started by lightning.
Game and Fish.
In the Elk Valley game is much in evidence. Elk, smaller deer, and bear are plentiful,
judging by their tracks; mountain-goat are seen high up on the rocks, and mountain-sheep (the
big-horn) frequent the hills on the Alberta slopes. Moose are found in some likely places.
Grizzlies are quite often encountered in the Spray Valleys, and around Assiniboine Pass they
proved an annoyance last summer. Woodland grouse are fairly plentiful, and ptarmigan on
the rocky slopes above timber-line.
Trout are to be had in the Elk and Spray Rivers, but are not plentiful and do not seem to
frequent the higher sources of the streams.
Survey Returns.
Full reports and maps are being prepared by the respective divisions of the survey and will
be filed with the Surveyor-General of Dominion Lands when ready.
In the foregoing report the distances and altitudes are a close approximation; absolute
figures cannot be given until the survey data has been computed.
In all, during the season, fifteen concrete monuments were erected and twelve brass bolts
with rock cairns over them were placed. Fifty-nine triangulation and camera stations were
occupied by the topographical division and 550 photographic plates exposed for mapping purposes.
I have, etc.,
Arthur O. Wheeler, B.C.L.S.,
Interprovincial Boundary Commissioner.
Printed by William H.  Cullin, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.


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