On the tracks of "Cowboy Joe"

by Marisa Geissler (Germany)

The last thing I expected Canada


It is Oct. 2017 and I’m in BC Canada in the middle of nowhere, 2 driving hours away from the next small town. Few weeks ago on my ride to the Chilcotin Mountains I was overwhelmed from the country I saw and the honour I got, to discover this unique world. The place where the tribe of the Tsilhqot'in aboriginal people have their roots. This landscape brought me back into the time of the wild west, the time when North America was undiscovered. The gravel road, the knowledge that here are cougars and the fact that a grizzly mom with her 3 cubs was walking along my road - in those minutes in my head popped up the big question: “What I’m going to do here? Alone, in my cute, little car and without any cell service for the next 90 minutes?” The last sunbeams over the ranch are already gone when my boss asked me for a talk. He is about to offer me a horse backpack hunting trip! It is early morning and we have to start to pack 2 horses with equipment and food supplies, enough to survive for the next days. Our goal is to reach out a ordinary cabin in the Shulap Mountains which is in the rough back country. My trusty companion is “Tippie” armed with high boots, warm clothes and what else - my cowboy hat the journey can begin. After a long ride up to our cabin without running water and heat, I’m joyful I managed the ride with Tippie on a small path with leading a packhorse in addition. The way up to our place was very steep, we went through a lot of trees on the wayside and through creeks. Shortly as we arrived we were surrounded from pine trees and we got into snow and there on a small hill there was, our beautiful, cute wood cabin. We made a cozy fire and fetched water from the creek so we could warm up by a cup of tea. Fulfilled of excitement how our 8 hour trip will go I fall into a deep sleep. It’s early morning and still dark outside. I start to make breakfast for us, eggs, bacon and a ordinary but delicious cowboy coffee. The nature here makes us speechless and we enjoying the view over the mountains and riding through the creeks. It is a hard ride on small paths and sometimes it goes very deeply down beside the paths, but our horses are trustworthy. Now we make a stop and fix the bridle on big stones. For us opened a fascinating view, over rough brown, red coloured mountains. We can see the valley with his incredible milky turquoise lakes. Our stop for a break is here and we watching some sheep before we decamp to our cabin luckily with the sunset forward us.