Letters to the Editor

Cliff Jones; South Country water crisis; Cranbrook Transit

Cliff Jones

I am sure many of your readers, when coming upon the grounds of the Kootenay Trout Hatchery, have remarked, “Look at those lawns — aren’t they gorgeous!” or “This place is so well kept” or “Whoever takes care of this place sure does a good job.”

Well, I can tell you who has taken care of the Kootenay Trout Hatchery for the last 25 years. His name is Cliff Jones … and he passed away last Saturday (August 15).

Cliff took great pride in keeping the hatchery immaculate. I had the pleasure of working with Cliff for many years and I consider him a friend. Cliff had very little family but had many friends.

There probably won’t be a service — there may not even be an obituary that hits the paper. If that is the case, let this be a tribute to a man who cared about doing a job well … and to a man who gave so much pleasure to so many.

Here’s to you, Cliff … thanks for all your hard work and thanks for caring. May you rest in peace, friend.

Laird Siemens, Cranbrook

Loss of water in South Country

In the Aug. 11 article entitled “Officials raise alarm over water, environmental ‘crisis’ in Baynes Lake area” the report stated that BC Hydro pointed to two separate studies from the crown corporation and the Ministry of Environment that didn’t find any relationship between the headpond levels at the Elko Dam and Baynes Lake water levels.

This statement is misleading.

The 1985 and 2009 studies were inconclusive. They did not prove or disprove a relationship because, in their own words “The resources and time needed to confirm this relationship go far beyond the financial resources allocated for this study, although such a study may be useful” (2009 study) and “the relationship ….is …unknown and would require investigation” and work would be required to “confirm geological conditions” (1985 Study).

Further investigations and confirmation of geological work called for in these studies has recently been completed. John Hodgins, a geologist with 43 years of geological experience has proven not only that there is a geological explanation for how the Elk River water gets to Baynes Lake and Kikomun Creek Provincial Park areas, but also that beyond a doubt it is Elk River water. A summary of John’s geological assessment was included in the presentation to the RDEK board of Directors and is available to all via a request to, director.doehle@rdek.bc.ca

It is important that all parties including BC Hydro and the BC Ministries listen to the recent research that has been done. Losing community water for basic living needs, losing beautiful lakes including Provincial Park lakes and losing wetland habitat for wildlife including the Western Painted Turtle, listed as a species of Special Concern in Canada, is indeed a crisis. But this crisis can be solved with action based on facts.

Stan Doehle, Area B Director R.D.E.K

Cranbrook Transit

We are fortunate to have in Cranbrook a public transit system that is well-organized and efficient. Drivers are courteous and proficient, the fair is affordable, and the ride comfortable. The trips are safe, which is more than I can say about my experiences as a pedestrian, but that is another story.

Michael Plul, Military Social Work Officer (ret’d), Cranbrook

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