Summer is coming to an end… or at least it feels like it. It was good while it lasted, but I feel that it only lasted two weeks (of course this is coming from the Brazilian inside me who constantly feels sun deprived in Canada).
For the past two weeks we’ve had several rainy days and temperatures four to five degrees below normal (not cool Northern B.C., not cool…).
The great thing about my job is that I was able to call an Environment Canada meteorologist and ask him if summer was already over (good thing he couldn’t see my sad puppy face as I asked that question).
Luckily he assured me that the weather we’ve seen over the past two weeks was only temporary, and that we were likely to see summer-like temperatures after Sept. 10 (yes, he really said “summer-like” temperatures; that wasn’t just wishful thinking).
In fact, meteorologists are expecting near-normal temperatures during the first half of fall, and above-normal temperatures in the second half.
But while I selfishly complained about the rain and the below normal temperatures, the weather was effective in reducing the region’s fire danger rating. The Northwest Fire Centre says the region is unlikely to see any hazardous conditions in the near future. Some of the firefighters in the Northwest Fire Centre have already finished for the summer and the majority finish their contracts at the end of September.
This week I was also busy trying to find out the origin of the name “Burns Lake.”
I first realized that people had different opinions on this subject while speaking with Decker Lake resident Bob Saul. Saul has heard stories about the Collins Overland Telegraph line since he was a little kid and knew that Burns Lake was named after Michael Byrnes, a surveyor for the telegraph line. However, Saul told me that many people in Burns Lake believed the town was named after a fire that had killed off and blackened most of the local forest in the 1800s – hence ‘Burnt Lake,’ which over the years could have become ‘Burns Lake.’
After speaking with Saul, Lakes District News spoke with other locals, but there didn’t seem to be much of a controversy regarding the village’s name, so we dropped the story.
Then during a recent council meeting where Burns Lake’s official community plan (OCP) was being reviewed, councillor Chris Beach brought to the attention of council that the origin of Burns Lake’s name in the OCP plan was incorrect (so it turns out that there was a controversy after all).
According to Burns Lake’s OCP draft, the origin of the name ‘Burns Lake’ comes from Robert Borland’s expedition, who traveled through Burns Lake in 1869 and noticed that a fire had blackened most of the local forest, calling it ‘Burnt Lake.’
After doing some more research, Lakes District News found websites such as www.hellobc.com that support the theory that the village was first named Burnt Lake.
I hope you enjoy reading our story on page 10 and that it finally answers that question.