Tag Archives: Strahcona Park Lodge

Flash Back Fridays

KAREN SCHWALM 1981

Education has always been very important to me and it seems that you never stop learning. My educational background includes having obtained a B.Sc. in Chemistry from Michigan Technological University, followed by work on a M.Sc. in Chemistry at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, Alaska.

This kindled my love of the Arctic and polar climates.  After moving to BC I completed the Simon Fraser University PDP teacher education program in 1973, and taught Secondary School in Prince Rupert, BC. That’s when I first heard of the Apprenticeship in Wilderness Leadership at Strathcona. Determined to be a scientist, I worked as a Chemist doing geochemistry assay and heavy metal analysis. I obtained a chemist position for Arctic Laboratories in Inuvik, Northwest Territories. The north was fascinating; I wanted to get out in the field to collect the samples I was analyzing. Alas, I wasn’t allowed on any expeditions into the field, where polar bear monitors with guns watched as the samples were collected, because I didn’t have enough Outdoor Skills. My then boyfriend, Nils Vikander, the Cross Country Ski Coach for the NWT, suggested that we go to Strathcona Park Lodge Outdoor Education Centre to attend the Apprenticeship in Wilderness Leadership program to get the outdoor skills, which included

Karen (centre), with Patty Van Humbeck and her friend Diane Sanderson in the bog

Karen (centre), with Patty Van Humbeck and her friend Diane Sanderson in the bog

Survival Skills, that would enable me to work in the field. He had the summer off and wished to expand his outdoor set of skills and we could do it together. Perfect, the outdoors and science were coming together. Read more

Flash Back Fridays

BUNNY SHANNON AND CLARK MUNRO

jaques and bunny

jaques and bunny

Bunny and Clark met at the Lodge and have been together ever since. They live in Fanny Bay on Vancouver Island. Clark has an oyster lease and Bunny just retired after many years as a trustee with the Courtenay school board. When she was at the Lodge, Bunny was known for her inspired cooking. In Bunny’s own words: “One of my favourite memories as kitchen staff took place as soon as the school groups left the dining room and kitchen and headed off for the afternoon’s activities. We would turn on the music, usually Pied Piper or Peter Gabriel, and dance on the tables before we would begin the final clean-up.” Bunny was a caring, creative and talented character who spent a great deal of time and energy preparing food that was appetizing, appealing, nourishing, and even entertaining for the rest of the community. Along with her co-worker, Lucy Alderson, they collected some favourite recipes, many of which we still use.

Cream of Broccoli Soup the Way Bunny Makes It

  • 4 T butter
  • 2 cups chopped onion 2 stalk chopped celery 4 cloves garlic
  • Sauté together.
  • Add 1⁄2 cup flour, brown lightly.
  • Add 6 cups of milk gradually. Stirring constantly,
  • add:
  • 1 bay leaf
  • pinch of all spice
  • black pepper
  • tamari
  • Worcestershire sauce, to taste basil
  • Add 5 cups chopped, cooked broccoli. Simmer briefly and serve. Nourishes six.

Read more

Flash Back Fridays

SUE HELLARD AND DOUG PATERSON 1977

Jim Boulding—My Mentor

When I think of Jim Boulding I remember someone who believed in me. His gruff voice saying “You can do it” made me take a big gulp and then just go do it. He was right, I could do it! My confidence started to soar. I found myself running white- water rivers with joy, and leading groups to the west coast on my own. I was filled with an exuberance for life as I did these things! The skills to make this possible were learned at the Lodge so I was confident in the knowledge that I could take on these challenges safely and responsibly.

There were of course memorable moments….Escalante was and is heaven for me, with the beauty and the power of the west coast. I treasure the skills and learning I received from all the resource people who came out on the trips.

Thanks to Hilary Stewart for sharing love and respect for plants and how to use them, cedar especially. I still love to weave baskets every year when we are at Escalante.

Thanks to Ray Williams at Nootka for stories of the trickster of the west coast as we sat in a sweat Lodge. Read more

Flash Back Fridays

LIVING ON THE EDGE

By Doug Paterson and Susan Hellard

Living on the edge was a phrase we first heard at Strathcona in 1979. Nothing defined that phrase more for us than the times we spent at Escalante. Jim Boulding first introduced it to us when we were apart of a flotilla of small motor boats lead by the Fair Isle that ventured down Muchalat inlet to the wild and untamed West Coast of the Island. We still visit this incredible part of Vancouver Island annually with dear friends and other former employees of the Lodge, Clark Munroe and Bunny Shannon. Our spirits fly in such a place.

On the edge not only defined where the mighty Pacific Ocean meets North America, but also our feelings and experiences of being surrounded by Read more

2013 Staff

We present to you the 2013 staff of Strathcona Park Lodge!

We present to you the 2013 staff of Strathcona Park Lodge!

Flash Back Fridays

Going to the coast with Jim By Michael Robinson

Reva Robinson(left)with fellow adventurers roaring down Muchalat Inlet in a Zodiak

Reva Robinson(left)with fellow adventurers roaring down Muchalat Inlet in a Zodiak

As the remaining crews begin turning over their motors and winding in their lines a cedar plank launch with rakish white lines rounds Anderson Point. Behind it surfs a large zodiac rubber boat loaded down with nine people, all dressed in bright wet weather gear and strapped into vest-type life jackets. The cedar clinker built and the zodiac are riding up and over the approaching swells with graceful ease. The big boat is churning through the sea and leaving a flat bubbly wake for the zodiac to fly along.

In the cabin of the lead boat a big man is smoking his corncob pipe and squinting through his aviator glasses. A tall grey Texas Stetson rides on top of his head. He has one hand on the wheel and one on the throttle in preparation for the big swells up ahead. As the bow of his boat climbs each wave he throttles up to momentarily sink the stern a little deeper. The boat is performing like an extension of its operator. Read more

Picture This! (SPL)

The stars over Elk Mountain.  An amazing sight to see with no city lights around.

The stars over Elk Mountain. An amazing sight to see with no city lights around.

Picture This! (SPL)

Alpine hiking

Alpine hiking

Slipstream visits Strathcona Park Lodge

Picture This! (WYLD)

Beautiful view on top of the mountain.

Beautiful view on top of the mountain.