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And so it begins...

And so it begins; our moderate descent into winter.


Fort Nelson never seems to get much of the two transition

seasons of spring or fall, everyone in Fort Nelson plays hard during our short

hot summers. River boating, camping, swimming and many other summer activities.

Although winter brings a chill and a slight sigh for everyone who endures a

long 7+ months of it, we still find way to pass the time and steer clear of

cabin fever. How do we do this you ask? Well one of my personal favorites as a

kid was family snowmobiling trips, you may be freezing but the activity does

get you sweating enough to start warming up. Soon enough the kids are riding in

the sled behind the snowmobile and the campfires are lit. The familiar smells

of exhaust, fire roasted hot dogs and marshmallows engulfs your senses and

winter doesn’t seem so bad after all!


Living in Fort Nelson my entire life, I was used to -40

degrees, gearing up in layers upon layers of long johns and socks. Thinking

back now I would not be so comfortable now walking to school in that! My life

long friend and I would get ready for school, meet at our half way point and

begin our 20 minute walk to school; it didn’t seem like much back then. The

worst we walked in was a near-blizzard -42 the school buses weren’t even able

to start up anymore! It would take a miracle to get me out walking in that

weather now. My grand kid’s best not think I’m lying when I give them the age

old lecture about “when I was your age…”


A few other events that brighten up the winters here are:


The Canadian Open Sled Dog Races, The Snowmobile Races and

the Community Christmas Eve Dinner. The sled dog races are something everyone

should see at least once in there lifetime, people crowded around the starting

line watching the mushers gear up the dogs, people buzzing with excitement as

the signal to begin the race finally is blown. The teams take off as if someone

held a match under their behinds!


My FAVORITE event is the Snowmobile Races, almost everyone

in town heads out to the airport on a Saturday morning; the races are held in a

field just a hop, skip and a jump away from the airport. The races are divided

into classes of age and type of machine. One of my fondest and proudest moments

of my mom was when she raced back in 1994, she was on a white Polaris machine

and she took off so fast that the front of her sled lifted! She did over half

the race cat walking the sled! She won

second place and the next year she won first (without having to ride half the

race in the air!)


So, even as I sigh and complain that winter is creeping its

way back into Fort Nelson, I just have to remember…


It’s Fort Nelson!

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Taken on March 26, 2004