Thursday, June 3, 2010

Day 18 – Radium Hot Springs, BC


Today is a camp day. We are catching up on chores and preparing to continue our trip. Tomorrow’s trip leg  is Radium Hot Spring's, BC to Calgary, Alberta.

Well now I need to update today’s activities. I finished up cleaning the windows and getting things in order for tomorrow’s departure and was just about to relax when Raija announced that we should “partake of the waters”. Translation from European for lets go to the hot springs. No cameras this time by orders from on high.

The water was indeed hot but it is one large pool now, actually two pools and a hot tub, so here is the scoop.

Sir George Simpson, the governor of Hudson’s Bay Company, made the first recorded visit to the springs in 1841. First recorded means that the Indians knew and use the hot springs before Sir George. He bathed in a one-person sized pool dug out of gravel.

James Sinclair followed the same route on his way to Oregon with a group of Red River settlers several weeks later.

The first legally registered owner was Roland Stuart, an Englishman, who purchased the springs in 1890 for $160 and owned them until 1922.

Now the government figured that all the people should share it, sound familiar, so they expropriated it for inclusion within the Kootenay National Park in 1922. Now one not only has to pay to enter the park, but pay some more to use the pool plus pay for a locker to put your clothes in while you are in the pool. Don’t worry if you do not have a towel, you can pay some more money for a towel. Not satisfied with that the government charges you to use the highway that goes through the park unless you do not have to stop and pee along the way. That is, if you can make it through non stop, then you do not need to pay a park fee. Obama surely must be taking lessons from our Canadian friends.

Back to Radium Springs: The water travels deep into the earth and returns to the surface with more than 700 milligrams of minerals per litre at a rate of 800 liters/minute. The water is 44C (114F) at the source. It is chlorinated and enters the hot pool at 39C (103F). The “cool” pool temperature is 29C (84F).

Another update for today. I was returning from taking Mik for his evening walk when I spotted several Big Horn Sheep in the ravine behind the motor home. By the time I retrieved my camera they had bedded down on the road leading into the RV Park. This group must be regulars as vehicles driving into the park did not bother the group of sheep.

IMG_0007 IMG_0001 IMG_0002 IMG_0003 IMG_0004 IMG_0005 IMG_0006

No comments: