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RETURN To an Order of the House for a Return of all papers, documents, reports, and correspondence in… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1902

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 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 801
To an Order of the House for a Return of all papers, documents, reports and correspondence in any way relating to the survey made by the Hon. Edgar Dewdney
over the route of the proposed Coast-Kootenay Railway.
Chief Commissioner of Lands and, Works.
Lands and Works Department,
8th April, 1902.
Victoria, B. C, Deer. 23rd, 1901.
Hon. W.C. Wells,
Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works, Victoria.
Sir,—Having received instructions on the 23rd July last from you to take charge of the
exploratory work in the Hope Mountains, which the Government proposed to make in order to
obtain reliable information as to the practicability or otherwise of a route for a railway through
the Cascade range at that point, I now beg to report that two parties were organised by me to
carry out this work, one under the charge of Mr. H. Carry, C. E., who had a general supervision of the whole of the work, and the other under Mr. F. Moberly, C. E., both competent
and reliable men.    They left for Hope on August 1st, and on the 3rd got into camp.
The field-work was finished on the 14th of October, when the last of the parties returned
to Victoria. From that date up to December 23rd, the staff have been engaged preparing
plans, reports and estimates, giving the results of their surveys and explorations.
In order that you might the more readily understand the several lines we have examined
I have numbered them as follows on the key map attached to this report :—
No. 1.—The line coloured black from Hope commences at a point on the C. P. R. line
surveyed this spring from Abbottsford to Hope, and runs up the Coquhalla 27 miles, where it
crosses the river, down the Coquhalla and up Unknown Creek over Railroad Pass, and down
Railroad Creek and the Tulameen to a point on the located line of the C. P. R. at Allison,
where that line turns northerly up Graveyard Creek. The mileage of No. 1 line is 79.28 miles;
the survey of this section, connecting as it does both east and west with the C. P. R., gives a
continuous chained line from Coast to the eastern boundary of our Province, and is the only
No. 2.-—Line coloured blue, from Hope via the Nicolum, Sumallow and Skaist, through
Cedar Flat Valley to the summit of Allison Pass, and thence down the south branch of the
Similkameen by the mouth of Roche River to Princeton, with an alternative cut-off through
Wolf Creek Valley.
The estimated distance of this line from Hope to the point of junction of No. 1 line with
the C. P. R., on the Similkameen at Allison, is 101 miles, but should the Wolf Creek cut-off
be adopted, 9 miles shorter ; this would leave both Princeton and Allison some 10 or 12 miles
off the line, and would not reduce the cost of the line.
No. 3.—Coloured yellow on that portion of the line between where it leaves No. 1 at
27.63 miles up the Coquhalla , and where it joins No. 1 line at "Tulameen." It runs from
Hope up the valley of the Coquhalla, following surveyed line No. 1 as far as 27.63 mile, and
continuing to its summit 7 miles, thence down the Coldwater 9| miles, where the line turns to
the south-east until it reaches the headwaters of the west branch of Otter Creek, 2 miles,
following it to its junction with the main Otter Valley about 5-| miles, thence to the junction
of Otter and Tulameen Rivers, where it joins line No. 117 mile, making the last portion from
Tulameen to end of No. 1 line 19J miles, common to both No. 1 and No. 3 lines, and the total
mileage 87.13 miles. The section of the country to which I confined our operations lies between Hope, on the
Eraser River, and a point some 9J miles down the Coldwater Valley on the north ; south to
the mouth of Roche River, near the International Boundary; easterly as far as the located
line of railway of the C. P. R. from Midway to Spence's Bridge, a junction with that line being
made at its nearest point about 2|- miles east of Princeton, where the line passes through the
Town of Allison.
Within this area more or less exploratory work has been carried on since the year 1872,
with the object of determining the elevation of the several summits, and as to the feasibility
of constructing a railway through the range of mountains at this point.
In the spring of 1872, having charge of a C. P. R. survey party, I received instructions
from Mr. Marcus Smith to make a traverse of the Coquhalla Valley from Hope to the Summit,
take levels and prepare profile and report, for the purpose of obtaining the elevation of that
pass and its distance from the Fraser River.
In 1874, on account of representations being made from New Westminster "respecting
the reported discovery of passes leading through the Cascade Mountains from different points
on the Fraser River, especially the Allison Pass from Fort Hope via the head-waters of the
Skagit and South Similkameen," Mr. Marcus Smith instructed Messrs. Cambie and Trutch to
form an exploring party and examine in company every pass they could find or hear of between
the Coquhalla and the American boundary line. The report of these gentlemen can be found
in Sandford Fleming's Report of 1877, page 105. From that year (1874) to the present several
investigations appear to have been made, and I believe the C. P. R. Company, with an object
of getting a direct line to the Coast, have had several engineers making explorations at different
times, with a view of getting information in regard to passes which had been represented as
It was not, however, until a charter had been obtained by the V. V. & E. to construct a
line from the Coast eastward, that any engineers outside of those in the employ of the Dominion
Government or the C. P. R. made any scientific explorations in what is known as the Hope
In 1896 Mr. Shaw and Mr. Brownlee were employed by the V. V. & E., and other
engineers, representing Messrs. Mann & Mackenzie, are said to have explored some of the
Messrs. Shaw and Brownlee, I am informed, came to the conclusion that a feasible line
existed from Hope, via the Nicolum, Sumallow and Skaist, to the headwaters of the Tulameen and down it to Similkameen.
Mr. England who, in 1899, was exploring for the C. P. R., was attracted by the low
elevation of the summit of Unknown Creek, and gave some attention to it. The head of
Unknown Creek rises about five miles east of the Coquhalla River, running into it about 20
miles from Hope.
Mr. England also examined the more southerly pass, known formerly as the " Allison
Pass," and which had, previously, on the west side been explored by Messrs. Cambie and
The knowledge of what had transpired in the way of exploration in these mountains,
coupled with my knowledge of the district, convinced me that either the pass by Unknown
Creek, or the southern route by Allison's Pass were the ones most worthy of further investigation, as being the most likely to be adopted should a railway be built through these
mountains connecting with through trans-continental lines.
Heretofore nothing more than an exploratory survey had been made, and as your Government was anxious to obtain something more definite as to the distances, grades, evidence of
snow-slides, probable cost of construction, and maintenance, you recommended that a trial
location line should be run, if possible, on both the north and south lines.
Up to the time your Government determined to carry out this survey, any estimate of the
cost of a line through the Hope Mountains could only be based on a general knowledge of
the country, obtained from those who had hurriedly passed over it. You will now be placed in
possession of data upon which an estimate has been made from actual survey, and upon a line
which I believe gives a fairly good average of the cost of any that could be projected through
this range of mountains.
It was found, after an examination of the country on the northern line via Unknown
Creek, that it would be impossible to make an instrumental survey of both lines without
placing in the field more survey parties, for it  was evident that the balance of the season 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 803
—already far advanced—would occupy the whole time of both Mr. Carry's andJVIr. Moberly's
parties on the northern line. I was fortunate, however, in having a very competent and
experienced man in Mr. Dawson, C.E., attached to Mr. Carry's party, and was thus enabled
to utilise a portion of Mr. Carry's time in making explorations, of which you will get full
details in his report.
I was in hopes that I would have had sufficient time, after Mr. Moberly had completed
his line from the summit of Unknown Creek eastward, to have utilised his party in running a
traverse up the south branch of the Similkameen from Princeton to the Allison summit on
No. 2 line, but the weather commenced to look threatening and I considered it wise to return
his party over the Hope Mountain before the snow fell, and I utilised the services of Mr.
Hislop, C.E., who resides at Princeton (and who had some previous knowledge of the route),
to make a reconnaissance of the line from Princeton to the summit of Allison Pass, taking
barometric heights and estimating the distances, at the same time reporting on the character
of the ground traversed. I attach his plan and report, which will show you that he performed
his work with expedition and ability in the face of very unsatisfactory weather.
Mr. Carry made a careful examination of the western portion, No. 2 line, from Hope to
the summit of Allison Pass ; his report of it is enclosed. Besides this exploration, Mr. Carry
also examined No. 3 line (coloured yellow), from the point on the Coquhalla where No. 1 line
from Unknown Creek crossed it, viz., at the 27 mile, and following the river to its summit,
continued down Coldwater Creek on the north slope some 9J miles, and thence to the west
branch of Otter Creek to Otter Valley.
Mr. Moberly was enabled also to examine what is known as "The Wolf Creek Pass."
This would be a cut-off—if thought advisable—on the southern route, No. 2 line, of about 9
miles, should a line be constructed up the main Similkameen and over the Allison Pass, as the
mouth of Wolf Creek is about 11 miles east of Princeton, and its junction with the south
branch would be also about 11 miles south of Princeton, while the distance between the mouth
of Wolf Creek and its junction with the south branch is about 13 miles.
No. 1 Line, West.—Mr. Carry's party worked from the summit of Railroad Pass, west.
It was the intention that both Mr. Carry and Mr. Moberly would camp near the summit of
Railroad Pass, one working east and the other west, but upon examining the ground it was
thought advisable that Mr. Carry's party should camp on the Coquhalla and from there work
the line from the summit, westward, and thus avoid packing supplies, etc., up the Summit
Camp trail, via Dewdney Creek and the basin to the summit, over very difficult country for
pack animals; consequently, Mr. Carry moved his main camp up the Coquhalla 22 miles, nearly
opposite the mouth of Unknown Creek. He was obliged to build a trail down to the mouth
of that creek to get supplies to a camp at this point, and where he was obliged to remain
while making a trail up Unknown Creek to the summit, the mountain sides being so precipitous and dangerous that no line could be run without this preparation.
A trail was also necessary to allow of supplies being packed to a point half-way between
summit, and a camp established for the party to work from. We were compelled to engage
the services of Indian packers to move the camp, so difficult and dangerous was the trail.
This necessarily meant very slow work, and having to assist clearing out and repairing the old
Nicola trail up the Coquhalla, as well as making many miles of new trail, Mr. Carry's party
was unable to commence running lines before the 21st August. At one time it seemed as if
we would have had to abandon putting grades on the profile of this part of the line ; as it was,
the length of time allowed for the survey did not allow us to make such changes and revisions
of the line as we would have liked, but the care given to taking the slopes of the mountain,
and liberal notes of the character of the country along the mountain sides permits a fairly
reliable estimate to be made of the cost of this portion of the line.
The maximum grade of 2J per cent, was adopted with the hope of bringing the line to
the flats of the Coquhalla, and the quantities within reasonable limits.
Even with this grade of 21 per cent, for 21 miles you will observe, by examining the
plans and profiles, that the line is forced back into the mountain sides nearly its whole distance.
It is probable that upon a careful revision of this line the grades might be reduced in
some portions of it, but that would necessitate an increase in others; should the maximum
grade be reduced, and this could only be done by crossing the Coquhallah further up the river
(as advantage has been taken of making distance at the only two available points on our line,
viz., by running up Boston Bar and Ladner Creek as far as their valleys will permit), the
length of heavy work would be largely increased. 804 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
No. 1, East—Mr. Moberly's party, as soon as supplies could be forwarded, moved to the
Tulameen River, and established their camp about 3|- miles from the summit of Railroad Pass,
from which point he worked east from an assumed elevation of 4,400 feet.
The party commenced running lines on August 14th. For the first 9J miles from the
summit the descent was at the rate of 2-| per cent, per mile for 7 miles, from thence to its
junction with Otter Creek the grades alternating between level and 2 per cent., and from this
point to its junction with the C. P. R. line at Allison, the grades are still more favourable.
The work on this portion of the line is not nearly as heavy as on the west slope, the
circuitous channel of the Tulameen, however, would necessitate some bridging, and 1,250 feet
of tunnels.
No. 2 line, via the Allison Summit, is somewhat longer in mileage than No. 1 line.
The route examined by Mr. Carry from Hope to the Summit via Cedar Flat would
encounter two summits, one at what is known as Beaver Lake, and the main one of Allison Pass.
The elevation of Beaver Lake is estimated at 2,000 feet, and as the distance by present
waggon road is only 12 miles, this is a formidable height to surmount, and would necessitate
a 3 per cent, grade unless distance could be made.
Should a line be built on the south bank of Fraser River from Chilliwack up and be
continued over the Hope Mountains by this route, grade could be made by leaving the Fraser
River some 5 miles before reaching Hope, and with continuous grade of 2J per cent, the
summit could be crossed, but the line at Hope would be 500 feet above the flat, and the line
would traverse rocky mountain sides the whole distance.
To make a close estimate of this an instrumental line would have to be run.
From there to Cedar Camp there would not be any great difficulty either in grades or
work as the Sumallow falls gently to the eastward.
After leaving the Sumallow, to the summit the grades would not exceed 2 per cent. From
the summit to Princeton the profile, prepared from Mr. Hislop's survey, shows that they are
not excessive, although the work for some 20 miles would be very heavy.
Some two miles below Hope a creek called Silver Creek runs into the Fraser. An
exploration up this creek to its summit, and east to the Skagit River, shows it to be feasible
for a line, and the summit of a less altitude than Beaver Lake, but as it strikes the Skagit at
a considerably lower elevation than Cedar Flat the loss of grade makes it all the more difficult
to overcome the main summit at Allison Pass.
No. 3.—This line, which follows No. 1 to the 27-1? mile on the Coquhalla, would have to
face the same heavy grades, tunnels and protection works which I have already referred to,
besides a similar character of country which would have to be encountered to its summit of 7
This, however, is the lowest summit through this range, being 3,515 feet, but according
to Mr. Sandford Fleming's report would necessitate grades ranging as high as 172 feet per
mile and five miles of tunnelling. Further surveys shew that this estimate is excessive.
Heavy snow slides, which appear to vary with the seasons, are prevalent, and in 1861, when
an examination was made by Mr. Turnbull, one of the Royal Engineers, no less than 15 are
shown on his plan.
This exploration was made in the latter part of April and the beginning of May, when 8
feet of snow was in the valley from Boston Bar Creek to the Summit.
The line on the north and east of the Summit would, however, be of a much more favourable character, and its cost not exceed probably $15,000 per mile for grading, while its
gradients would also be fairly satisfactory. This line, from the junction of the Tulameen and
Otter Valley, is a portion of No. 1 line, and has been already referred to. The total
length of this line would be about 87.13 miles.
The result of the surveys shows that the Hope Mountains cannot be crossed without
encountering serious engineering difficulties, which would necessitate a very large expenditure
of money, and I know of nothing so pressing, either in the way of development along any line
that might be determined on, to warrant its construction, outside of a few prospects that have
been brought in by miners. There is nothing at present to give encouragement for this
expenditure, except the existence of some very fine timber on the west slope.
Along No. 1 route, Summit Camp, upon which assessment work has been done, showing,
in spots, some very fine galena ore, and which is within 8 or 9 miles of the line, is the most
encouraging; also, on some of the creeks running into the Tulameen, Eagle, Bear, Kelly and
Boulder, some very good prospects have been brought in, but not sufficient development work
has been done to guarantee that, with active operations, a large output would be the result. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 805
A coal field is reported to exist between the Tulameen and the south branch of the
Similkameen. Some exploratory work is being made near the south branch of the Similkameen, and it appears most probable that, should good coal be found in quantity, it will
be worked from that side and not on the Tulameen. Along the lower part of the Tulameen,
on small benches, a few market gardens and timothy fields are found, but there is no extent
of agricultural land along the route.
If the mountains contain the valuable mining deposits it is supposed they do, one line
cannot accommodate the business, and a cheap system of transportation will have to be considered to bring out the mineral to the nearest point of treatment. With the magnificent
water-power in all the valleys, a plan of electric railways might be found satisfactory.
On No. 2 line, although considerable prospecting has been done, I know of nothing being-
found which has attracted much attention, except what is known as the Roche River mines.
I am not able to express any opinion on them. Mr. Robertson, the Government Metallurgist,
has examined this as well as most of the known mining sections in the country tributary to
the lines we have run, and you will have the benefit of his report.
The mines on Copper and Kennedy Mountains are as convenient to any line of railway
that may be run up the Similkameen Valley that they may be considered in connection with
it, and the construction of a line up the south branch, while probably a little more convenient
for some portions of Copper Mountain, would be of no value to the eastern part of that valuable
district, as its ore would find its way to the main Similkameen.
The remarks I have made in regard to the probable immediate traffic on this mountain
road are not encouraging, but the serious difficulties are the heavy grades and very costly
work, the topographical nature of the country necessitating a considerable length of tunnelling
and protection work. This will entail a heavy charge for maintenance, and must be taken
into serious consideration .should anyone undertake this important work.
The season of the year during which our operations were conducted, while being the best
for our survey, did not give us an opportunity of observing the effect of the snow-fall, which
is known to be very heavy in the Cascade Range, and without an inspection in the early
spring,when the snow is moving, it would be impossible to report what amount of snow-
shedding would be required. The precipitous mountain sides, with huge, smooth bluffs, timber
and vegetation burnt off for miles, would indicate that a great extent of snow-shedding would
have to be provided. We have estimated for such structures only at points which show that
slides occur annually, the probability being that much larger expenditure than that submitted
would have to be provided for.
The reports of Messrs. Carry and Moberly enclosed enter fully into all the details of the
survey. The plans and profiles have been prepared on such a scale as will give you a good
idea of the character of the country to be encountered. Appended also you will find tables of
distances, grades, estimates of cost, etc., and will, I trust, give you the information which you
instructed me to obtain. While I feel any route which might be selected must necessarily be
difficult and very expensive to maintain, it is to be hoped that further development might
demonstrate that sufficient mineral wealth exists to warrant the construction of more than
one line of transportation through this vast range of mountains.
I have no doubt that you will be told that a better line can be obtained than the one we
have surveyed and explored.    Nothing but an instrumental survey can establish this.
I can get no information which would warrant me in believing that there is, north of the
boundary, any better line, and I can find no reports of U. S. surveys which would indicate
there is one of merit even by crossing- from one country into the other.
Below is a summary of cost of Routes Nos. 1, 2 and 3, by which you will see that No. 1,
the short route, via Railroad Pass, is the most costly.
The southern route, No. 2, via the Nicolum, Skaist and Cedar Flat route, over the
Allison Pass, is 22.72 miles longer than via Railroad Pass, and is estimated to cost $87,659 less,
while the Coquhalla and Coldstream route, No. 3, which is 9 miles longer, is estimated to cost
$618,125 less than Railroad Pass and $530,466 less than the Nicolum, Skaist and Cedar Flat
route, which is 13.87 miles longer than No. 3, Coquhalla and Coldwater route.
A list of articles stored at Princeton and Hope, used on the survey, is filed in the office,
as well as of instruments, drawing tools, etc.
Enclosed you will find Mr. Carry's and Mr. Moberly's and Mr. Hislop's reports.
Plans, profiles and survey books have been handed to Mr. Gore.
I have, etc.,
(Signed)        E. Dewdney, in charge of Survey. 806
Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey.
Summary op Cost of Routes Nos. 1, 2 and 3.
Route No. 1.—Railroad Pass.
Hope to summit of Railroad Pass—Carry's line    38.63
Summit of Railroad Pass to end of line—Moberly's line . .   39.75
Per Mile.
Route No. 2.—Nicolum, Skagit and Cedar Flat Route.
Miles. Per Mile.
Hope to Allison Pass—Carry's line       51 $33,039
Allison's Pass to junction with end of Railroad Pass—Hislop's line       50 33,000
Route No. 3.—Coquhalla and Coldwater Route.
Miles. Per Mile.
Hope to Tulameen—Carry's line    67 . 63        $32,849
Tulameen City to end of No. 1 line—Moberly's    19 .50
Victoria, B. C, 21st Dec. 1901.
To the Hon.  Edgar Dewdney:
Sir,—I beg to submit the following report on the results of the past season's survey and
reconnaisance of various railway routes through the Cascade Range eastward from Hope,
towards the confluence of the Tulameen and Similkameen Rivers.
Railway Pass Line.
My first care was to start the survey—with compass, chain and level—from the divide
between Coquhalla and Tulameen waters, at that point locally known as " Railway Pass.'
After a considerable amount of strenuous exertion with axe, pick and shovel we succeeded in
forming a trail—perilous at best, over which we could pack some light supplies to within
working distance of the Pass.
Elevation and Gradients.
As the elevation of the Pass approximated 4,160 feet above sea level, and the distance
being about 18| miles in an air line to Hope, at which point it was desirable to descend to an
elevation of 160 feet, I adopted as a maximum gradient 132 feet per mile, equal to 2- per
cent. Of this, and slightly under, there eventually proved to be 21^ miles, of a 2 per cent,
(and slightly under) 4 miles, and of 1.2 per cent, (and under) about 13| miles, making a total
of 38| miles from the Pass to Hope.
The Line and Character of Ground run over.
Referring to Plan " C," it will be seen that our line, starting at the Pass as zero, follows
the right bank of Unknown Creek, a tributary of Coquhalla River, for five miles, thence,
turning into the valley of the Coquhalla, follows the left bank of that river to mile 10-, at
which point the grade line has reached such an elevation as permits a crossing without excessive
work. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 807
Section No.   1—0 to 11 Mile.
With the exception of the first couple of miles of this section the ground run over is
composed almost entirely of rock slides and rock in situ, the latter largely predominating, and
the general slopes of the mountains, which run from 35° to 70°, averaging about 45°, are formed
by a succession of bluffs, varying from 5 feet to 100 feet in height.
The whole mountain side is scored by deep, narrow gorges, each of which represents a
snow-slide of most energetic character.
The entire slopes of the mountain for some thousands of feet (in vertical distance) is of this
type, so that any continuous grade line used would not materially change the character of the
difficulties to be encountered, although by using a much steeper gradient in places and breaking-
it up, much might be accomplished.
Photograph " A," annexed hereto, shews valley of Unknown Creek from the bank of the
Coquhalla, opposite its mouth, and photograph "B," taken from the same spot, is a view up
the Coquhalla River.
In providing against snow-slides steel bridges, completely spanning the ravines at grade
line, have been estimated for. After very careful location survey many of them might be supplanted, in construction, by retaining walls and strong sheds, but in any case the cost would
be great.
It is beyond doubt that innumerable snow-slides would be developed by the vibration of
passing trains—these, of course, have not been provided against in estimate of cost.
It might be remarked here that the greater portion of the line has to be in " cutting," as
the slopes are, as a rule, greater than the angles of repose for even rock. This steepness of
slopes is the cause of greatly increasing the quantities in cuttings which, on the profile, look
quite insignificant.
The estimated cost (exclusive of track, etc.), is $90,475 per mile for 11 miles = $995,250
for the whole section.
Section 2—11 to 32 Mile.
Section No. 2 covers the ground between the upper crossing of the Coquhalla River and
a point beyond which there is a choice of location. The length is 21 miles, and the line
follows the right bank of the Coquhalla, with the exception of a short distance on the upper
reaches, where two crossings of the river are taken to avoid a bad snow-slide and otherwise
benefit the line.
This section includes some heavy work along very steep, rocky ground in the vicinity of
Unknown Creek, and also the expensive work incident to the crossing of Boston Bar and
Ladner Creeks. With further and more careful survey this might be lightened, but this is
altogether problematical. It includes, also, about eight miles of light work along the river
flats which tends very materially to reduce the average cost per mile.
The estimated cost is $28,066 per mile for 21 miles, making a total of $587,380 for the
section.    It will be observed that this is less than one-third the cost per mile of Section No. 1.
Section No. 3—21 to 38.63 Mile.
Mile 21 is the point of divergence of an alternative location to Hope. This may be seen
by referring to the full red line on Plan A. The one route for which estimate of cost is made
is the one which presents the best gradients.
The principal feature would be a tunnel about 2,900 feet in length, this being an item
that causes the average per mile to amount up to a large sum.
The necessary crossing of the Coquhalla could be made with a 200-foot span with low
abutments. 808 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
Estimated cost is $51,765 for 6.63 miles, equal to total of $343,200.
Alternative Location.
The location adopted over the latter section might be varied on debouching from the
tunnel, by taking a crossing of the Coquhalla River some 165 feet high by about 1,000 feet
long at grade line, and thus shorten line by seven-eighths (-J) of a mile.
Or by diverging at mile 32 and crossing summit of ridge opposite M. 341 fair ground
could be followed along northern slopes of spur and a high crossing of the Coquhalla, similar
to that above described, taken. The ending point of the survey would be reached at a cost
of increased length over the tunnel route of 1^ mile, besides an extra summit of 100 feet to
surmount.    This adverse gradient could be kept below one per cent (1%).
Total Cost.
The total cost, railway pass to Hope (exclusive of track, &c.) would amount to $1,927,791,
or an average of $49,904 per mile for the distance of 38.63 miles; and with track, stations,
tanks and sidings (which are estimated at $8,000 per mile) at $57,904 per mile, or a total of
Standard of Road.
The above estimate of cost is arrived at by taking out the quantities of excavation, timber,
masonry and bridges for a first class railway, standard gauge, as closely as can be done with the
information gained from running a preliminary line over such very rough country.
Although a great portion of the line was run thorugh burnt timber, there could be found
some green timber suitable for trestles in the upper part of Unknown Creek, and the flats of
Coquhalla River are thickly timbered with large cedar and fir.
The prices at which the various items of construction were figured are such as obtained
on similar works recently executed in British Columbia, and in view of the vast proportion of
excavated material that would necessarily be "wasted," it is thought that they would suffice
to the cost of all tote roads and other contingencies in connection with the work.
Explored Routes.
Besides the line chained, two routes were explored with pocket compass and aneroid
barometer, and in plotting them on plan "C" they were found to tie in very well.
Coldwater Route.
The mileage started at Mile 11 of projected location, or at a point on the Coquhalla a
little over 27 miles from Hope, that length being common to this and last described route.
Section No. 1.
From zero, at an elevation of 2,770, to the lake at the head of Coquhalla River, elevation
3,515, the distance is about 7 miles, and as the rise is 745 feet it necessitates a continuous
gradient of at least 2 per cent to overcome it.
The mountain sides are of similar character to those described above on Section No. 1 of
surveyed line, except that there would be few or no occasions for steel bridges, trestles being
sufficient, and it would probably be found that the most feasible way of surmounting the
difficulties to be encountered would be to increase the gradients considerably and thus get only
a very short section of extremely bad work, getting down nearer the toe of the slopes where
better material is to be found as a rule.
This section I would put down at a cost of $60,000 per mile (exclusive of track, &c.) or a
total of $420,000 for the 7 miles. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 809
Section No. 2.
Immediately on passing the divide the whole appearance of the country changes. The
hills are rounded and covered with considerable soil, rocky slopes and bluffs being the exception instead of the rule.
Section No 2 extends from Coquhalla Lake to the main Otter Creek Valley at M. 23, and
is, therefore, 16 miles in length.
The route followed was down the Coldwater route about 8 or 9 miles, then up a very
small tributary a couple of miles to the watershed between Coldwater River and WTest Otter
Creek, which attains an elevation of about 3,200. Although this is some 300 feet higher than
the point at which Coldwater River is left, a good line can be got at that height above the
river flats, the hillsides having very even slopes and favourable material.
The gradients would not exceed 0.75 per cent, and would all be falling towards Otter
From this watershed down west Otter Creek, about 4 miles, a line would be practically
in the bottom of the small valley, and the gradients would be 2 per cent, and under to the
main Otter Creek, at an elevation of 2,810.
Cost is estimated at $12,000 per mile, equal to a total of $192,000 for the 16 miles.
Section No. 3.
This is from M. 23 to M, 40, which equals mile 20J on Moberly's line at Tulameen City,
the elevation of which is 2,240.
The gradients over this stretch would be under 0.75 per cent, and as the line could follow
the creek flats to a great extent, cost of construction would average fairly light, and is placed
at $8,000 per mile, equal to $136,000 for the 17 miles.
Total Cost.
Not including track, etc., the total cost, therefore, between Hope and Tulameen City
would be as follows:—
Sections 2 and 3, along Coquhalla, 27.63 miles ,       $932,537
1 up to lake, 7 ,        420,000
ii       2, along Coldwater, 16 „              192,000
3, Otter to Tulameen 17 .,       136,000
Total     $1,680,537
Equal to $24,849 per mile for 67.63 miles.
Nicolum-Skagit Route.
Allison Pass.
As early as 1874 Mr. H. J. Cambie reported on this pass, and not entirely favourably for
the purposes required.
The pass itself is all that could be desired for railway construction—being wide and
sandy—but is rather out of the way of a direct route between the two objective points.
Going eastwards it leads directly into what appears to be the main tributary of the south
branch of the Similkameen River. This tributary—hitherto apparently unnamed—I have
named Cambie River, after the pioneer engineer. Down this river, five miles to its confluence
with Roche River, was the limit of my exploration in that direction. On this portion I saw
no engineering difficulties. The material to be encountered would be mostly sand and gravel,
and the gradients would not be greater than 2 per cent.
Upper Skagit—Section No. 1—0 to 18| Miles.
Starting in the pass at an elevation of 4,460 feet, and going westward on a continuous
2 per cent, gradient in order to descend to Cedar Flat, at the confluence of the Upper Skagit
and Skaist Rivers—at an elevation of 2,267 feet—the air line distance of nine miles has to 810 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
be doubled in some way. This can be accomplished by turning northwards up the Skaist and,
after making a right-about turn at the mouth of 33-Mile Creek, following the same (or left)
bank down to the point mentioned.
As it is important to avoid the right bank of the Skaist—it being scored by half a dozen
bad snow-slides—a steeper gradient (in order to save distance) could hardly be used, as there
appears to be no other place in the valley where a turn could be favourably made.
On this section there would be only about three miles of bad rock-work, the balance
being in good material; but as the slopes are all partly steep, quantities would mount up. All
(or nearly all) snow-slides would be escaped and bridging would be light.
The cost per mile is estimated at $15,000, or a total of $277,500 for 181 miles.
Section No. 2—18|- to 33.J Mile—and Sumallow.
This section extends from Cedar Flat to 33J miles at the Sumallow (Nicolum summit),
a distance of ] 5 miles, and includes some heavy work over a considerable proportion of that
distance—notably at 24, 25, 26, 27, and 29 miles. A continuous 2 per cent, gradient from
18o| miles would reach Sumallow River flats, which would give light work, at about 25J miles,
and thence to the Sumallow-Nicolum Summit, at 33|- miles, there would be a rise of only a
couple of hundred feet; but the ground down to the Skagit will scarcely permit this on
account of cut banks and narrow rocky canyons. The grade line would have to be kept up
opposite junction of the Skagit and Sumallow, and this would give a continuous, slightly
falling gradient westward.
Several snow-slides would have to be provided against, and in all probability others would
be developed.
The estimated cost over this section is on an average $20,000 per mile, or for the 15 miles
a total of $300,000.
Section No. 3—33Jr to 51 Mile—Nicolum River Section.
Starting at the watershed between Sumallow and Nicolum Rivers, at 33- miles, at an
elevation of 2,230, the valley followed by the old waggon road (now merely a trail) gives a
distance to Hope of some 9 miles.
To reach good ground on the lower slopes of the mountains at Hope—beyond which point
I did not extend my explorations—it would be advisable to descend to an elevation of about
200.    In using a gradient of 2.5 per cent  that distance would require to be doubled.
Although there was not time at my disposal in which to properly examine the possibilities
of this important and difficult section, it appears to me that a line as laid down on Plan C,
encircling Nicolum Butte, would be practicable. Possibly a tunnel of 2,000 feet (or more)
might be found necessary in passing into the valley of Anderson Creek; and under any circumstances the work on this section would be heavy, although the last 5 miles would be comparatively light.
The cost is roughly estimated at $40,000 per mile, or a total of $700,000 for the 17J miles.
Total Length and Cost.
The total length by this route—from Allison's Pass to Hope—would be 51 miles, at an
average estimated cost of $25,000 per mile, or a total of $1,277,500.
Muddy Creek Pass.
From the confluence of Cambie and Roche Rivers, S. 65° W., about 4 miles up a small
tributary of the latter river, is a summit leading into Muddy Creek, a tributary of Skagit
River. This summit has about the same elevation as Allison Pass—higher if anything,—and
as the Skagit attains a very low elevation at mouth of Muddy Creek, and is reported to flow
between very rugged mountain slopes, I concluded that this route was hardly worthy of consideration, although it is quite possible that the distance between the confluence of Cambie
and Roche Rivers and Cedar Flats might not be greater than by the route described. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 811
In estimating cost of track, 80-lb. steel is provided for. In the item of " Track, &c,"
appearing below, are included a few small, inexpensive station-houses, a few tanks, and a
minimum of siding, track-laying, telegraph and turntables; amounting in all to $8,000 per mile.
The cost of the various routes may be summarized as follows :—
Railway Pass Route.
Railway Pass to Hope :
Miles. Per Mile.           Total.
Up to subgrade 38.63 at $46,904 = $1,927,791
For track, &c       „ 8,000 =      309,040
Grand total $2,236,831
Or         57,904 per mile.
Coldwater Route.
Hope to Tulameen City :
Miles. Per Mile. Total.
Up to subgrade 67.63 at $24,849 = $1,680,537
For track, &c     „ 8,000 =      541,040
Grand total $2,221,577
Or           32,849 per mile.
Nicolum-Skagit Route.
Allison's Pass to Hope :
Miles. Per Mile. Total.
Up to subgrade      51 at $25,039 = $1,277,500
For track, &c     „ 8,000=      408,000
Grand total $1,685,500
Or         33,039 per mile.
I have, <fec,
(Signed)        H. Carry,
Engineer in Charge.
Railroad Pass to Similkameen.
Victoria, Nov. 26th, 1901.
The Honourable Edgar Dewdney, &c, dec,
Sir,—In accordance with instructions received from you, to make a preliminary survey
for a railway line from the summit of the Hope Mountains to a junction with the Canadian
Pacific Railway survey on the Similkameen, I commenced work on the 14th of August last at
the summit of Railway Pass, a pass that was discovered a few years ago by a prospector
named John Amberty. I then carried on the work continuously until October 2nd, when I
connected with the Canadian Pacific Railway survey at Graveyard Creek, between Princeton
and Allison, having run a distance of 39.65 miles, and fallen in elevation 2,381 feet, or an
average of 60 feet per mile. The weather was particularly favourable for carrying on the
work, and we only lost three or four hours on account of rain. We left Princeton on 3rd
October and reached Hope on the 8th, where the party was disbanded.
From my starting point I followed a small creek named Railroad Creek, which heads in
the pass and empties into the Tulameen River, for a distance of 3| miles, then keeping round 812 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
the hillside I ran up the valley of Kelly Creek to gain distance, then crossing this creek we
followed its valley down until the Tulameen was.reached. The north bank of this river was
followed until the end of the survey, except at two points where we crossed and re-crossed the
river to avoid tunnelling through mountain spurs.
I assumed an elevation of 4,400 feet for the summit, and at 1.J- miles from that point,
where the creek began to fall rapidly, I started a 2.5 per cent, grade, which was carried on to
the 10th mile, where the line runs down to the Tulameen River, and from this the grades vary
from level to 2.2 per cent., except from stations 760 to 820, where it reaches the 2.5 per cent,
point again. The grades below this are the natural grades of the river. By starting on a 2
per cent, grade, and keeping higher on the hillside and utilising a little more of Kelly Creek
Valley, and possibly of Siwash Creek, it would not be necessary to exceed that grade nor the
work made heavier.
Generally speaking, there is a good depth of soil all along the line, composed of a sandy
loam mixed with gravel, and broken here and there by rocky crags or bluffs jutting out, and,
occasionally, long spurs run out from mountain sides, causing great bends in the river and
usually forming canyons.
Although I kept my line on the left bank of the river, I think it would be well to locate
part of the line below Tulameen City on the right bank, which could be done without increasing the number of crossings, and would lighten the work.
The rock met with varied, there being granite, schist, diorite conglomerate and sandstone.
Timber of a useful size was scarce, as the country has been generally burnt over, but
some spruce of a fair size is still to be had on the right side of Railroad Creek, and also on the
right side of the Tulameen, but the ground is unfavourable for lumbering purposes. There is
no cedar and very little tie timber along the line, and below Bear Creek the character of the
timber changes and it is principally yellow or bull pine with scatteriug firs; nearly the whole
line, however, is through a dense growth of willow and alder brush with patches of second
growth spruce, pine and fir, and dead timber.
In laying down my projected location I have used several 15° curves (Radius 383'), but
on a final location, especially if part of the line is located on either bank of the river, a 12°
curve would be the maximum.
There are three tunnels shown on profile, 1,250 feet in all. These are through good rock,
and would not need timbering.
Part of this tunnelling may be cut out on final location; the longest tunnel is 500 feet.
All bridges estimated are for permanent structure of steel trusses and masonry
abutments; the longest span is 200 feet.
The rails estimated are an 80-lb. rail, which is probably the lightest rail advisable to use
with the grades and curves we contemplate; the fastenings are also of a heavy pattern.
The buildings estimated are of a temporary class, and the cost is based on the usual run
of such a class of building.
The estimate provides for 8 miles of sidings, which probably is in excess of the requirements for a time. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 813
All along the line are evidences of a rich mineral country, and although no mines are
actually at work, a great deal of prospecting and assessment work has been done at Summit
City, Kelly Creek, Bear Creek, Rabbit Mountain, Boulder Creek, Granite Creek, Collins
Creek (Coal), Copper Mountain, and Kennedy Mountain Camps, beside the development of
the Similkameen Coal -beds at Princeton and at numerous other small camps, all of which
would be tributary to this line.
Hydraulic mining has been carried on at several points on the Tulameen, principally at
Eagle, Slate and Granite Creeks, but I understand the operations have not been successful,
although the benches along river look favourable for that style of work.
Placer mining is still carried on to a small extent by Chinamen at different points from
Eagle Creek to Allison, and, as they are working some of the ground over for the fifth time, it
must have been very rich, or it must be renewed from some near-by source.
Agricultural Lands.
There is. very little agricultural land immediately along my line ; from Slate River down
there are occasional flats on the river bank, but until the neighbourhood of Princeton is reached
no success seems to have met the small efforts made in the farming line, due to a great extent
to summer frosts, drought and want of water for irrigation.
Bunch Grass.
Bunch grass country begins about five miles above Princeton, and seems to extend from
there north, south and east.
My line touched three townsites, Tulameen City, Princeton and Allison, all of which are
beautifully situated.
Wolf Creek.
I examined WTolf Creek "cut off" across the bend of the Similkameen River, from the
mouth of Wolf Creek to the mouth of Whipsaw Creek, and found that route practicable and
would shorten the line 10 or 12 miles if the Similkameen route were adopted, but it would not
serve the country so well as a line round the main valley ; the cost of construction and maintenance would also be great, as for half the distance the line would be over steep rock slides.
Estimates, etc.
Attached hereto you will find a detailed estimate of quantities and cost of the different
classes of work necessary to complete the road; also estimate of cost per mile, and a list of
plans, profiles and note-books returned herewith.
I have, etc.,
(Signed)        Frank Moberly,
Engineer in Charge. 814 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
Approximate Estimate of Cost per Mile.
1—Right of way $     125 00
2— Clearing  232 90
3—Grading  14,389 00
4—Bridging  5,685 00
5—Culverts  100 00
6—Ballast  1,000 00
7—Ties  660 00
8—Rails, 80 fts. )
9—Fastenings, $1.25 per joint -  5,019 00
10—Spikes )
11—Track-laying  200 00
12—Telegraph  300 00
$27,710 90
13—Stations (4) $ 5,000 00
14—Round-house, 6 .stalls      6,000 00
15—Tanks (4)      4,000 00
16—Turntable      1,000 00
17 —Sidings, 8 miles    72,436 00,   per mile      2,210 00
Total cost per mile $29,920 00
Total cost 39.65 miles = $1,186,328.00.
Earth excavation,  1,026,992 cubic yards  $256,748 00
Rock          ,,              157,108          „           196,385 00
Tunnels     n                  14,500          „            94,250 00
Loose rock,                   62,665                        28,199 00
$575,582 00
Cost per mile for grading = $14,389.
Estimate of Bridging.
Kelly Creek—Span 100 feet.
Masonry in abutments:
233.4 cubic yards—1st class  $3,501 00
116             „              2nd „       932 80
Superstructure,  142,500 lbs  8,555 00
flooring  300 00
$13,288 80
Siwash Creek—Span 100 feet.
Masonry in abutments :
83.44 cubic yards—1st class  $1,252 00
Superstructure, 142,500 fts  8,555 00
ii              flooring  300 00
$10,107 00
Eagle Creek—Span 200 feet.
Masonry in abutments :
332.86 cubic yards—1st class  $4,992 00
332.86          ii            2nd   „     2,662 88
Superstructure, 428,780 fts  25,726 80
ii              flooring      600 00
$33,982 00 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Sttrvey. 815
Bear Creek—Span 200 feet.
Masonry in abutments :
385.7 cubic yards—1st class  $5,785 50
303            i,             2nd i,      2,431 20
Superstructure, 428,780 lbs  25,726 80
flooring  600 00
$34,543 50
Otter Creek—Span 100 feet.
Masony in abutments :
83.44 cubic yards—1st class  $1,252 00
Superstructure, 142,500 fts  8,555 00
n            flooring  300 00
$10,107 00
Tulameen River—Span 200 feet.
Masonry in abutments :
83.44 cubic yards—1st class  $1,252 00
Superstructure, 428,780 fts  25,726 00
flooring  600 00
$27,578 00
Tulameen River, 2nd Crossing—Span 200 feet      27,578 00
Tulameen River, 3rd Crossing—Span 200 feet  27,578 00
Tulameen River, 4th Crossing—Span 200 feet  27,578 00
Graveyard Creek—Span 100 feet.
Masonry in abutments:
327 cubic yards—1st class  $4,905 00
163.5      „              2nd   ,i      1,308 00
Superstructure, 142,500 fts  8,555 00
flooring  300 00
$15,068 00
Railroad Pass to Similkameen.
Clearing 465.85 acres $ 9,317 00
Cost per mile, $232.90.
Culverts, 30  4,000 00
Cost per mile, $100.
Ties,  104,676  26,169 00
Cost per mile, $660.
Right of way (say 50 acres to purchase)     5,000 00
Cost per mile, $125.
Bridges, Steel.—Masonry Abutments.
Kelly Creek,     100 feet $ 13,288 80
Siwash Creek,  100    „      10,107 00
Eagle Creek,    200    „      33,982 00
Bear Creek,      200    „      34.543 00
Otter Creek,     100    „      10,107 00
Tulameen River, 1st Crossing, 200 feet  27,575 00
2nd        „         200    „      27,575 00
3rd        „        200    H      27,575 00
4th        „        200    ,i      27,575 00
Graveyard Creek,                           100     „       15,068 00
$227,408 00
Cost per mile, $5,685. 816 Coast-Kootknay Railway Survey. 1902
Tulameen Line.
List of Plans.
One General Plan ; scale, 200 feet = 1 inch.
One Tracing Plan; scale, 200 feet = 1 inch.
One Profile.
One Traverse Table Book.
One Cross-section Book.
Two Transit Note-books.
Three Level Note-books.
One Cross-section Book.
Prices on which Estimate of Cost is Based.
Right of way, per acre $100 00
Clearing,                „           20 00
Earth excavation, per cubic yard  25
Rock            „                     „  1  25
ii               ii                     ii             in tunnels  6 50
Loose rock,                        n               45
Masonry, 1st class  15 00
2nd    „      8 00
3rd    „      3 00
Concrete    10 00
Ballast  50
Ties, each  25
Rails, per ton  35 00
Fastenings, per joint  1 25
Spikes, per mile  180 00
Telegraph line, per mile  300 00
Timber, per M  17 00
Piles, driven, per lineal foot  25
Iron for trestles, per ft  10
Steel in bridges erected, per ft  06
Flooring for bridges, per foot  3  00
Switches, complete  125 00 2 Ed. 7
Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey.
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Oi 818 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 1902
Princeton, Oct. 5th, 1902.
Hon. Edgar Dewdney, Esq.,
Victoria, B. C.
Dear Sir,—Enclosed you will find a sketch map showing the principal data collected by
me during my recent trip to Roche River, under your instructions. I also submit the following general description of the country travelled over :—
Summit to 7-Mile Pt.—There is a dry gravel flat at the summit 400 feet wide. The
valley below is of varying width up to one-half mile, and consists of low benches and bottom
lands, swampy in places (about one mile in all), and timbered with black pine, spruce and
balsam. Several short stretches of cut bank occur—1,500 feet in all—requiring riprap, crib
or change of channel. At six and one-half miles from the summit there is a narrow box
canyon requiring 400 feet of tunnel, partly in gravel and partly in rock, or two bridges. The
channel of the creek in this stretch will average about 100 feet wide, though at present the
stream is less than 25 feet wide.
7 to 10-Mile Pts.—Here there is a continuous stretch of very smooth, dry bench, 40 feet
above a rather swampy bottom. Bench timbered with black pine, small at upper end, but
large enough for ties at lower end of bench. Bottom more heavily timbered with spruce,
balsam and black pine.
10 to 12-Mile Pts.—One-half mile of side-hill work.    Balance, light cut and fill.
12 to 22-Mile Pts.—The valley is from one-quarter to three-quarter mile wide, with the
river meandering from side to side, and frequently washing the foot of the mountains (for about
one-half mile in all). At such places the material varies from earth cut bank to solid rock,
perpendicular for 50 feet, but is largely loose rock (granite), suitable for riprapping. In this
stretch there is about two miles in all of low bottom lands, subject to overflow at extreme high
water, and flanked for the most part by rocky side-hill. The remainder consists of dry bottom
bench lands at slight differences in elevation.
Timber :  Spruce, black pine and fir, in places heavy, but mostly rather light.
22 to 40-Mile Pts.—At the junction of Roche and Pasayton Rivers the canyon begins,
and extends ali the way to Whipsaw Creek. As far as Sunday Creek there are numerous
short stretches of narrow bench lands (shown on map) at varying heights up to 120 feet above
high-water mark. Between these benches, and extending in many places to greater heights,
there is what may be termed a precipitous belt, consisting of crags approaching the perpendicular
from the river up, and interspersed with steep, solid rock, slide rock or earth side-hill. Immediately above the precipitous belt there is a region of flatter slopes, cut into ridges in many
places by side gulches. Above this again the gulches extend away back into the mountains,
and most of the intervening ridges end in bold, rocky promontories. This precipitous belt
continually increases in depth as we proceed down the river, until in the vicinity of the Red
Buch mineral claim (38miles) the crags reach a height of 600 feet above the river. Below
29-mile Pt. there are no more crags along the river, but the canyon of Whipsaw Creek is
precipitous for 300 feet above its bed. In this stretch also there are several box canyons
(notably one at 23 miles), where the river describes zigzags in a narrow channel between perpendicular rock walls. Most of the way the rock appears to be very much disintegrated,
indicating that tunnels would have to be timbered.
40 to 47-Mile Pts.—Below Whipsaw Creek there is a bench 400 feet above the river,
and a succession of drops from one bench to another takes to Princeton. Toward the river,
however, these benches are much broken up by ravines and basins, and for a short stretch
near Mr. Waterman's house by landslides.
Timber : Scattered bull pine and a few firs. Prom the summit to the junction of Roche
and Pasayton Rivers the work would average very light for a mountain country, but from
there to Whipsaw Creek it would be extremely heavy.
As I found the basin at the foot of Nicomen ridge to be at 6,060 feet elevation, I deemed
it unnecessary to investigate that route any farther. 2 Ed. 7 Coast-Kootenay Railway Survey. 819
It may be well to add that the accuracy of the elevations obtained is no doubt much
impaired by the bad weather I encountered. It rained every day 1 had to do the work in
except the last, and though the elevations as given are corrected by the best data obtainable
(aneroid readings furnished me by Mr. Moberly, and taken at Princeton and at camp), that
data is altogether insufficient, Mr. Moberly having no records taken on the days I needed them
I have, &c,
(Signed)        Jas. Hislop, P. L. S.
Printed by Richard Wolfenden, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.


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