This week we take the podcast on the road for the first time and get a tour from the owners of Three Valley Gap in beautiful British Columbia. The passion project of the late Gordon Bell, the family run Three Valley Gap is now under the helm of his spirited, dedicated and down-to-earth children, George and Mel. Sit back and enjoy the trip as Mel and George take us on a private tour sharing their family history, some incredible stories and a behind the scenes look of one of Canada’s biggest private historical collections.
Located on the Trans Canada Highway just 12 miles (19km) west of Revelstoke, Three Valley Lake Chateau Ltd. and Three Valley Gap Heritage Ghost Town are in the spectacular Eagle Pass. The Gap is surrounded by the mighty Monashee Mountains and the sparkling waters of the Lake of Three Valleys lap the beach of the resort. Three Valley Gap Heritage Ghost Town, is a unique attraction adjacent to Three Valley Lake Chateau. A visit to the Ghost Town will bring you back to the pioneer days of a typical 1800’s British Columbia western town. During your visit, you will tour more than 25 rescued and restored historic buildings, an Antique Auto Museum featuring automobiles dating from 1902, and our Railway Roundhouse, complete with turntable, locomotives and rail cars.
Toast: Park Distilleries - Park Maple Rye
In September of 1863, an man, unknown to any of the locals in the small village of Digby Neck, Nova Scotia, was found washed ashore on the beach of Sandy Cove. The man was found with no legs, a little bit of food and an inability or unwillingness to communicate with the locals in English, French or Italian. He would quickly come to be known as “Jerome”, named after the only sound he was able to produce when questioned on his past and where he came from. Just where did this man come from? While his past has remained a mystery, there are no shortage of stories and legends around Jerome of Sandy Cove.
Toast: Dillon’s Small Batch Gin - Unfiltered 22
In 1921, 6 brave souls - 5 men and 1 woman embarked on an incredible journey that ultimately saw 3 teams attempt to make their way across this vast, beautiful country on foot. What started out as a leisurely walk by two unemployed friends from Halifax to Vancouver, turned into a race between 3 teams that would eventually captivate an entire country. A feat equal in size and enormity to Rod’s recent 20 km hike with his wife (of which he will constantly reference….), for Sid Carr, Charles Burkman, Jack Behan, Clifford Behan and Jennie and Frank Dill, the 5900 km journey on foot in the face of sleet, snow, rain, heat, cold, mosquitoes, and wolves would be a herculean feet. An incredible journey in theory, but could it possibly be completed in practice?
Toast: Fernie Brewing Company - Project 9 Pilsner
Sources and Extra Reading:
This week we are back with Rod’s favourite topic: Canadian Cults. He promises that it will be a trilogy topic …. with maybe a few extra episodes. After a brief, forced apology from Rod for missing our release last week (we really are sorry for all those fans out there) and a rough start as we shake off some vacation dust and try wake Brandon up, Rod introduces us to Roch Thériault.
The Ant Hill Kids as they’d become known were a small religious cult led by Roch Thériault from 1977 - 1989. Thériault is considered one of most notorious criminals alongside Paul Bernardo and Clifford Olson, a statement we are sure you’ll find hard to disagree with. Thériault garnered a following of nearly 40 individuals and maintained a harem of 9 women who bore him 26 children. He feared the end of the world and on a daily basis made damn sure his subjects feared him.
Toast: Mt. Logan 15 Year Old
In this episode we dig into the real issues - Rod’s love for cold brew and hate for how much companies charge for it as well as Brandon and Rod’s secret, but not so secret, man crush on Peter Mansbridge. All that in the first 5 minutes! After we clear up those mysteries, Rod get’s into the story behind the First Contact of explorers with Canada. In the early 1000s, a group of Vikings made contact with what would become our beloved Canada. Rod walks through the events leading up to the Viking voyage to what is now Newfoundland, the journey, a brief insight into the Viking’s short stay in Canada as well as what it commonly seen as the First Contact with the original inhabitants of Canada.
Toast: Canadian Rockies 21 Year Whiskey
In todays episode, after a call for a new theme song, we discuss our Explicit Rating and what that means. After a drink of cold beer and some rambling due to the extreme heatwave, we discuss two smaller topics. First, we discuss the true inventor of the California Roll, and posit the inherant weakness of Wikipedia. In the early 1970s, Hidekazu Tojo was struggling to keep his Sushi restaurant open, until he tried to change things up with the order of ingredients in tradional nori wraps, and subsequently changed the world.
Next, we talk about the Canadian tie to the ink that American currency is printed on. This story begins in the mid 1800's, with a quirky chemist/inventor, with an even quirkier name acocrding to Brandon. From there we are introduced to a man who may be the first patent troll, or maybe just a businessman smart enough to recognize an amazing business opportunity.
Toast: Granville Island Brewing Company Dopelbach
In this episode, after an impromptu movie review from Rod, Brandon sheds light on a little known Leper colony on D’Arcy Island off the Coast of British Columbia, that would become home to Chinese Lepers from British Columbia and the rest of Canada. With an influx of Chinese immigration into Canada and a growing list of legislation that can only been seen as rampant discrimination against Chinese immigrants that would last for decades. The result would see a large number of Chinese immigrants, some with, some without Leprosy sent to fend for themselves on D’Arcy Island, visited a mere 4 times a year to drop off basic supplies. In this tragic story, we learn what life was like on for the Lepers of D’Arcy Island and the hardships experienced for many new Chinese immigrants to Canada.
Toast: Long Table Cucumber Gin
“If you want to speak about history, you have to acknowledge the spirits”
In part two of our discussion with Calgarian artist Terrance Houle, Terrance digs deeper into his Kainai past, traditions and cultural influence including a how his mom and grandma tricked him into becoming anglican, his own personal spiritual beliefs, how his culture influences his art, his current Ghost Days project and reconciliation through the spirits and the land. After a short diversion about music growing up and a quick lesson on dirty ojibway words, we also get into his views on colonialism, the past, opening Indigenous culture to the non-indigenous, and much much more. Once again we start this episode with the sounds of the Kainai and end with the sounds of Terrance.
Toast: Steam Works - Pale Ale
Resources and references:
In this episode we sit down with internationally recognized artist Terrance Houle. Terrance was born in Calgary and raised on the Great Plains of North America, a proud member of the Kainai Nation (Blood Tribe). In this casual but open conversation, Terrance opens up about being the first one in his family in over a century to be raised by his parents, not taken away and imprisoned by government policy or otherwise. Terrance graciously shares some of his Kainani cultural traditions, how his relationship with his parents difficult past has influenced his current works as an artist, his views on celebrating Canada 150, how he was tricked into being baptised and much more. This week’s episode will also start with a Blackfoot Grass Dance suggested by Terrance and end with Terrance playing the theremin! Sit back and enjoy Part One of our interview with Terrance.
*We apologize for the sound issues, we had a microphone failure and had to switch to the back-up recording. Please power through as this interview is incredible!*
Toast: Crown Royal Special Edition
More on Terrance:
In 1845, explorer Sir John Franklin set sail from England with two ships, HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, in search of a Northwest Passage. The ships and crews vanished. Their remains found eventually scattered across the Canadian North. In this podcast, we explore the harrowing journey these brave souls volunteered for in the hopes of fame and glory. In particular, we focus in on the often ignored HMS Terror and its more seasoned Captain Crozier.
The Toast: Ironworks Bluenose Rum, Nova Scotia