It felt like it had been a long time since I went for a drive. Actually, it hadn’t. I’d driven to Vernon on errands but didn’t have the time or energy to visit any of the places on my list – all which involve walking. I’d been out for a cruise on West Side Road, but there was traffic, and I just wasn’t feeling it. So by the time I had the right circumstances – a day off, lots of sleep – I was pretty anxious to get started.
Santana was a last-minute addition to my plans, though not an unwelcome one. I was planning to visit a place I found on the map – Postill Lake. I’d never heard of it before, although apparently, I should have, as it was in the news just a couple of weeks ago.
“Central Okanagan Search and Rescue said three people and their dog were found after searchers, driving through the new-growth forest on ATVs, heard them “screaming” for help. Another wave of rescuers had missed them minutes earlier, unable to hear them shouting through the dense brush.”
Rhianna Schmunk · CBC News
After their truck went off the road, landing them in a ditch, the three were trying to get unstuck when the dog jumped out of an open window and took off into the forest, chasing a deer. Chasing after the dog, the three got turned around in the deep forest, and couldn’t find their way back to the road. Twenty-five hours later, they were found. Thankfully, all were unharmed.
Of course, I didn’t know any of this. I found the lake on the map and wanted to go. I didn’t Google it until I got home.
That’s just how I roll.
The sky was overcast but there was not supposed to be any rain. I would have thought, given the proximity to the airport, that the forecast would be accurate, but rain had already fallen – the gravel road was damp and droplets of water glistened on the leaves. The grey skies had the effect of deepening the green of the forest and I could feel myself sinking into the calm that comes whenever I start to breathe the forest air. The drive was lovely and would have been picturesque if it weren’t for the illegal dumping marring the landscape. I understand 3500 tonnes of trash was removed from the area, just last fall. Shameful.
Still, if you can overlook the old couches and partially burnt mattresses, there is plenty else to see.
I had Siri on because there are multiple ways to start out for the lake. When she told me to make a right-hand turn, I came to a dead stop. What??? She wanted me to go where???
The “road” Siri wanted me to take was next to impassible. It was a steep, uneven climb that did not look like a road at all. I’m not overly shy about taking rough roads, but this didn’t look right at all. I checked the map. If I didn’t turn off, I would still end up at the lake, but it looked like this was a shortcut.
Santana offered to go scout the road to see if it improved any. That sounded good to me. While he was gone, I grabbed my camera and had a little look around. There was a deep, tree-filled crevice on the other side of the road. Perched in a tree were a pair of Turkey Vultures.
Santana came back and said, “Let’s go.” His voice sounded hurried. What he found when he ventured up the road, was a partially built structure that looked as though someone might be living in it. He described what he found and said that the whole thing made him feel very uncomfortable – like there was something sketchy going on. I made some joke – shades of “Deliverance” – but of course, he’s too young to get the reference.
We made our way to the lake, stopping on occasion so I could indulge my photo bug. There were fields and fields of Fireweed. There was a wildfire in the area last year, but it was fairly small and quickly contained.
Soon we arrived at the Postill Lake Lodge. This is a very cool trout fishing, family-oriented resort that has cabins, cottages, and camping sites available, along with boat rentals. I completely fell in love with the site. The rates are very reasonable, compared to other places I’ve seen, and I fully intend to make a return trip. I’ve even chosen my accommodation already. I asked about winter stays, but unfortunately, the resort is only open until mid-October.
The lake looked moody under the overcast skies, but I like that. Not every day can be sunshine and laughter.
We headed for home.
Strangely, when we reached the place we had stopped earlier in the day, I spotted the Turkey Vultures again and stopped. But there was more… There were six Turkey Vultures and two Bald Eagles, all in the same location – across the road from the shortcut. It was weird and a little unnerving. I couldn’t help but wonder what lay at the bottom of the crevice that had their attention. I peered over the side but could see nothing.
We made our way back down the road, and I thought about the discussion my Poetry Circle had earlier in the week. We were discussing Robert Frost’s poem “Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening”, and what it might have meant – especially the final stanza.
“The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.”
Some of the group agreed with the analysis that suggested Robert Frost was considering abandoning civilization, perhaps even contemplating suicide, but I disagree.
I think he was talking about heaven.