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Tag Archives: campfire cooking

We got away with our camper for a week or so at the end of May. Last summer there was no time for camping between work and wildfires so we just decided to block out some time early and do it. With a little luck, maybe we can go again later in the summer.

The Lost Lake Campground was created by the CCC. Signs indicated the work was done in 1940 and ’41. There is a cabin and shops and also some buildings at the adjacent Kiwanis camp all built by the CCC workers. The cabin is badly in need of repair. I do hope the US Forest Service can find the resources to preserve this historic building.

Western larch is the predominant tree around the campground. These are tall stately conifers with needles that turn golden yellow in the fall before dropping. In the spring they grow vibrant green foliage. Apparently the area was logged in 1963, taking many of the big old trees. There are at least two remaining and a nature walk will guide you to them. The area was thinned/logged again around fifteen years ago, I think. This thinning has produced a healthy and attractive stand that is also more fire resistant than it was prior to that.

We were joined by Ken’s brother and the two of them enjoyed fishing for brook trout from the short kayaks. We had two good meals of fresh fish cooked over the fire. I enjoyed birding from my kayak. Ken and Carl saw a moose swim across the lake while they were fishing. Of course, I missed it! We all enjoyed listening to the loons calling to each other.

It was nice to get away from home and the ever-present electronic world.

Here is our bird list from Lost Lake.

Canada Goose

Wood Duck


Green-winged Teal

Ring-necked Duck

Common Loon

Turkey Vulture

Bald Eagle

Red-tailed Hawk

Virginia Rail


American Coot

Spotted Sandpiper

Great Horned Owl

Barred Owl

Common Poorwill

hummingbird sp.

Williamson’s Sapsucker

Downy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Pileated Woodpecker

Olive-sided Flycatcher

Hammond’s Flycatcher

Empidonax sp.

Gray Jay

Steller’s Jay

Common Raven

Tree Swallow

Violet-green Swallow

Black-capped Chickadee

Mountain Chickadee

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Marsh Wren

Golden-crowned Kinglet

Ruby-crowned Kinglet

Western Bluebird

Townsend’s Solitaire

Swainson’s Thrush

American Robin

Orange-crowned Warbler

Yellow Warbler

Yellow-rumped Warbler

Chipping Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco

Song Sparrow

Red-winged Blackbird

Red Crossbill

Pine Siskin

Evening Grosbeak


Summit Lake has a small provincial park with a campground. When we arrived it appeared to be full and we were considering going on up the road towards Nakusp, unsure if we’d find anything better and available. We enquired with the park host who said the young folks putting up the toadlet fence were leaving that afternoon and we ought to check with them. Sure enough, they’d mostly finished with the fence and had most of their gear packed so we moved in before they were all the way moved out. It was a double spot and we shared it with some nice folks from Castlegar. We also met some other nice folks from Kamloops and an unplanned party went well into the evening one night! We really liked their dog and they were pretty nice too. By this time we must have been missing our dog, back home at Rover’s Ranch.

Summit Lake is a lovely lake for paddling and fishing. I saw numerous canoes and kayaks – more than I’ve seen in one place in a long time. Common Loons must have nested there this year. I saw an adult with an almost grown youngster. Ken enjoyed the fishing – catching some very large rainbow trout that we enjoyed, cooked over the fire.

The toadlet fence is designed to keep the toads out of the campground and also to funnel them to a highway crossing. They are born in the lake and spend their life there as tadpoles til they metamorphose into western toads and then they need to go to the mountains. In order to get there they have to cross the highway and it’s a dangerous gamble for the tiny creatures. We were told that in the past, so many toads were squished on the highway that it needed to be sanded. That’s a lot of tiny toads. Unfortunately all the toadlets don’t understand that they are supposed to come out of the water on the other side of the fence. We saw numerous ones on the road to the boat launch who did find the fence and some were able to squeeze through the tiny holes. Western toads, like many amphibians, are having a hard time these days. Summit Lake is considered a stronghold for them.

That’s it. The last post from the vacation. It was a fun road trip and we will probably re-visit that area again someday.

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