The legend of Sandon: A link to the past

This weekend was different.

This weekend was different.

There was a point where it looked like it was going to be the exact same as every other weekend for me. I take Friday off, maybe I have to go to a photo shoot, then there’s plenty of events that I have to go and cover and write about before our deadline hits on Monday.

But something happened.

It started off the same. I awoke a bit later Friday morning, got up, made breakfast and proceeded to sit in front of my television and flicked on my Playstation.

The lovely Stefania Seccia came over and joined me, and I thought we would have a laugh and enjoy each other’s company.

This is when things changed.

She quickly grew bored and restless. And before I knew it, she just curiously asked, “Do you want to go visit a ghost town today?”

As soon as those words came out, I knew I would be in for some kind of adventure out and about the countryside.

I remembered what I had been told about Sandon, an abandoned mining village out past New Denver. I relayed that information on to miss Seccia, and before I knew it, we were out the door and in the car.

I had never been to Sandon before this. I had always gone out to New Denver and had heard stories of how you could visit there and there were still folks who maintained the museum. I had always put it in my memory bank for the right time, but for whatever reason, it never came out – until now.

Luckily Friday was a rather gorgeous day.

The sun was shining and the awful snow had been melting for a few days already, so the roads weren’t bad at all.

We whipped up past New Denver and started heading down Sandon Road which led to, you guessed it, Sandon.

The road wasn’t nearly as well maintained as the highway, for obvious reasons, but a plow had recently gone over it and we were confident we could make the trip.

Slowly, we drove through the snowy road with the thick brush around us and the cold air ventilating all throughout the car.

We packed a camera to take some snapshots of the place when we got there, because we didn’t know what to expect. But nothing prepared me for what hit.

When we arrived, the place felt like Silent Hill (game reference, I apologize for losing some of you).

There was nothing there, save for old, rusted trams and buses, and some abandoned houses and the museum. And this was exactly what we had expected.

Well, minus the snow.

You see, when you visit Sandon in the winter, there’s no entry into the actual buildings or the museum.

Snow piled high, even reaching the second floor of some buildings.

We weren’t disappointed in this. Not in the least. We were actually excited to see such a place and get a glimpse at what life almost felt like years and years ago.

We’ll just have to remember to come back in the summer.

Sam Smith is the reporter/photographer for the Arrow Lakes News based out of Nakusp, B.C.


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