Posted by: Dave Neads | January 9, 2010

A Few Precipice Memories 2009

Discovering that the phone was dead and taking three days to get caught up around here before I could make a town trip and report it to the phone company.

Finding my printer was jammed with cat niblets, carried by mice from the kitchen upstairs down to the office on the first floor and stuffed with great care into the far end of the paper tray.

Rounding up my neighbour’s cattle with horses as well as ATVs, then driving them a thousand feet up the Precipice to their spring range on the plateau.

Working in the garden wearing a black screened bug hat, floppy green jacket and gloves with gauntlets to ward off the clouds of black flies.

Running into my neighbour who had just sunk his ancient blue Universal tractor up to the seat on the edge of the muskrat swamp at the end of far meadow. He was on his way to get the battered old yellow D6 to pull it out.

Teaching an Italian WWOOFer to operate a chainsaw and seeing the thrill light up his face when he felled his first tree.

Having several friends came to visit who pitched their multicoloured tents and stayed for a while, bringing so much food, including a huge spring salmon, that we were fed for days.

Enjoying evenings around the fire pit roasting chicken and having long conversations deep into the night while staring into the bowels of the fire.

Listening to a beautiful song about our Precipice Valley, written and played for us by a talented musician from Switzerland who stayed in our guest cabin this summer.

Clearing and breaking trail through heavy early snows in mid November, twice, so we could ride a snowmachine for an hour to get to our vehicle.

Removing the snow from the two satellite dishes mounted alongside the FM antenna to keep communication channels open

Riding our skidoo to a New Year’s Eve party at friend’s log cabin, lit with kerosene lamps, their warm glow mingling with the orange yellow light coming from the huge bonfire outside.

Standing on the front porch during a clear December midnight, looking up at a sparkling Milky Way while listening to the ancient, scalp-tingling sound of the wolves’ mournful howl.

Understanding flooding my mind when I stand at our living room window, looking into wilderness as far as the eye can see, realizing how privileged I am to be here in this time and place, living in the western ARK.

“Ille preater omnes orbae terrarum mihi angulus ridet”



  1. Hi Dave,

    Memories are made of this.

    I searched Google for the quote so I could find out what it meant. Yours is the only site listed that has it. Maybe it has a typo?

    We went to the dog sled races yesterday and were very impressed. Click on the link to see a few photos.

    Hope the thaw is proving manageable.

    – J

  2. nice reflections friend.

  3. Ille terrarum mihi praeter omnes angulus ridet (Horace; “This corner of the earth smiles for me more than any other”).
    This sets the theme for the Chilcotin Ark book!

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