A Watched Pot Never Boils

The flu is no fun, believe me.

Back at it.

One thing that happens when you stop looking at your inbox is things start to happen in your absence. There are some new things to report.

I’ve tried my hand at book reviewing. B.C. photographer Chris Harris makes me look like a novice when it comes to exploring historic British Columbia. His book British Columbia’s Cariboo Chilcotin Coast: a photographer’s journey was a privilege to review. Thanks to Alan Twigg, publisher of BC BookWorld and Richard Mackie, editor of The Ormsby Report, for sending me his book to review.

Here’s a look at the review:


Thanks to Motorcycle Mojo for publishing “The Coast to Kootenay Connection” in their March 2017 issue. The photo above is the one I took in Midway to start work on gathering material and notes for the article. Here’s the link to the online version…


Also, I’ve just heard some exciting news about where I can develop Riding Across Historic British Columbia. I’ll let you know as that develops. Of course, I’ll be returning to Horizons Unlimited CanWest in Nakusp to give a presentation with some updates from the past year, some of which have yet to come. I’ll be riding up to the Likely and Quesnel Lake area in July with the Greater Vancouver Motorcycle Club to see what so many have recommended to me. Barkerville is one of those historic places in B.C. that is long overdue for me to experience. I can’t wait to see it.

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Reliving childhood adventures along Highway 19a

When I was a kid, I would look forward to camping up island all year.  My favourite campground was Miracle Beach near Courtenay. And I would get there on Vancouver Island’s  wonderful Highway 19a.

Now that highway has a super-speedy counterpart, Highway 19, where travellers can blast along at 120 kph, but I prefer taking it slowly, riding along the coast past oyster farms, quiet bays and beautiful scenery.

Here is a visual record of riding this exceptional road from Oyster Bay south of Campbell River to Qualicum Beach.  I hope you enjoy it…

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When is a story not a story?


I had asked a veteran of the Vancouver motorcycle scene for an interview. So far, so good.

The experienced gentleman got back to me and was willing to do the interview and be part of the story. I got approval to do the story from the magazine I’d pitched it to. Yes! But the motorcycle manufacturer that this gentleman has worked for asked for something unprecedented in the time I’ve been writing freelance stories for motorcycling magazines. They wanted approval of the final product, control over the story I was going to write, final say on whether it was published or not. So far, so bad.

So, let me get this straight. I would have to go and do an interview, one I was very much looking forward to as I would hear this gentleman’s stories relating to me the history of motorcycling in British Columbia, but I might be wasting my time as the motorcycle manufacturer he has worked for could turn it down after I’d written it. If that were to happen the story, indeed the interview that coined it, would never have happened. Oh yes, I almost forgot…and I wouldn’t get paid.

So I had to turn the respected expert down for the interview. Neither he nor I had been trusted. It was very disappointing.

When I was at CBC Radio occasionally I would have to turn interviews down for the same reason, from people who wanted the publicity, but didn’t seem to give me the benefit of the doubt and wanted control over what I was going to write. To those people I respectfully must say: I am not a division of your corporate communications department.

I’m a freelance writer trying to get a story accepted by a magazine. The magazines I’m pitching stories to generally don’t go for the former employer of an interview subject getting editorial control. Just sayin’.

So it’s back to the drawing board on Monday.

If any freelance writers out there have experienced this, let me know in comments. I’d be curious as to how you fared.

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Pemberton: a step back in time

A few summers ago, friends Gabe Khouth, Matt Sell and I rode up the Sea-to-Sky and had a nice brunch in Pemberton. We decided to ride through the historic centre of town and pulled over by the Pemberton Museum. Stopping in I learned about how hard it was to live in Pemberton before the railroad and highway made it to town.  Today, people come for the active outdoor lifestyle and music festival. Back then, getting the necessities of life was difficult.  The Pemberton Museum & Archives Society is another one of the hardworking community groups I’ve met in my travels around the province that prioritize preserving how life was for early settlers to British Columbia…


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