Recapitulation, Denouement and Departure: Part 14


In the Land of the Black Bear:

Au Pays de L’Ours Noir


In The Land of the Black Bear!

Kermode Bear: A Well Disguised Black Bear


This is the fourteenth and last post from The Land of the Black Bear, the story of the project of house building and property development between 1972 and 1992 south of Prince George, B.C.

For a more detailed account of the stage by stage evolution of a 40 acre bush over twenty years,  go to the Categories section of the Home page screen, click on the “Select Category” button and from the drop-down menu choose the category “In the Land of the Black Bear.” There are 14 posts. Start with Part 1 for the beginning of the project.

Click on images to magnify

Lodgepole Pine Forest at the Back of Property: Deanne, Allison Anita and Mango.

Lodgepole Pine Forest In the Land of the Black Bear: Deanne, Allison Anita and Mango, 1974

Lodgepole Pine Forest at Back of Property

Lodgepole Pine Forest in the Land of the Black Bear, 1974



At the beginning of the decade of the 1990s on a rural road south of Prince George, B.C. an unattractive façade  of stunted aspens, scrubby willow and alder camouflaged an eclectic collection of features which had been developed between 1972 and 1992  on a rural property.

The gallery of photos below reveals pictorially, the progressive development of one half of the forty acre undeveloped bush purchased in 1972 when Allison, Anita, Deanne and Garry Girvan lived in the Prince George area of British Columbia.

Deanne’s photos are the evidence that these people and this place did exist, unless of course all of this is simply a shared hallucination or photo shopping run amok.


(Click on an image to start the slideshow of the elements of the evolution of the bush over 2 decades.)

Pictorial Recapitulation



The Bushman at fifty years old came to the realization that after nearly 20 years it was time to leave the Land of the Black Bear. His physical decline at mid-life was beginning to show, as was his growing intolerance of the long winters in the Central Interior of British Columbia. Old age and physical debility were intolerable prospects, given the constant and increasing demands of maintenance of buildings and of antiquated machinery.  It was time to abandon the project or risk an early death on a lonely hill in The Land of the Black Bear.

The Bushman’s wife, although a willing and enthusiastic participant in the project had nurtured an independent and successful career in secondary schools in Prince George as a valued high school teacher and counselor and did not share the Bushman’s bleak outlook. Hers was the choice either to stay in the Land of the Black Bear and retain the respect that she had earned from her more than 20 years of service to young people in the schools in Prince George, or leave the nest, by now emptied of two children pursuing their own dreams, to follow the new incarnation of the late lamented Bushman, now a refugee from the Land of the Black Bear.



Beyond the southwest horizon from a plateau on the eastern bank of the Fraser River south of Prince George, in the Land of the Black Bear, there frequently seemed to be a clearing in the sky, just beyond the reach of the Bushman. That clear patch of sky stayed tantalizingly constant in the Bushman’s field of vision. Somewhere out there to the southwest the skies were less heavy with that new load of snow destined to be dumped on the Land of the Black Bear. Find that place!

The murky Fraser River over the millenia had worn a deepening groove through the vast plateau between the Rockies and the Coastal Mountains leading from the Central Interior of British Columbia to the Pacific coast. Highway #97 followed the southwesterly bearing of the Fraser. This Highway would be the route to the many possibilities in the regions to the south and southwest for people from central and northern parts of British Columbia who contemplated growing old in gentler climes. Vancouver Island was calling. The Bushman answered the call. The Bushman’s wife followed.


In The Land of the Black Bear!

In The Land of the Black Bear
Au Pays de l”Ours Noir 


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