The letter this week is K
and K stands for the Kootenays
Kootenay, which is the name used for the south east corner of British Columbia, comes from the Kootenay First Nation, a group of linguistically distinct Native people who occupied the eastern part of the Kootenays, and whose territory extends into northern Washington, Idaho and Montana.
The western portion of the Kootenay district was also occupied by Interior Salishan Natives, related to the Coastal people, or by Thompson River-Shuswap Natives.
About 100 years ago prospectors came to the West Kootenays, attracted by its rich ore deposits, and mining and ghost towns haunt the area, silent relics of past treasures.
Ghost town of Slocan Mines
Geographically the Kootenays are spectacular. Four parallel mountain ranges march successively across the southeastern B.C. landscape, - the Monashees, followed by the rugged Selkirks, and further east the Purcells, and then the Rockies.
Kootenay Lake , which is 65 miles long, runs in a north south direction, and the Kootenay river joins with the Columbia near Castlegar.
The part of the Crowsnest Highway east of Grand Forks is called the Skyway, and it is the highest elevation paved highway in Canada. The stretch between Salmo and Creston, where avalanches are a fact of life, is infamous for dangerous driving conditions in the winter.
The Salmo Creston Pass
The Kootenays are a marvelous part of British Columbia.
There is skiing and hot springs, wildlife and parks. wonderful backroads
to travel and all those mysterious ghost towns
Here is a pictures of the caves at the Ainsworth Hot Springs
and below it a picture of the famous Cody Caves, which heat the springs at Ainsworth.
The Kootenays are a super place to spend some time if you are celebrating the letter K
and for more interesting K's visit here at ABC Wednesday.