Monday, October 16, 2017

Rail Travel Tours journey to York Factory

 This summer, our own Felix Lesiuk led the Rail Travel Tours trip to historic York factory. 

By Felix Lesiuk

After the 3 hour jet boat ride we got to York Factory. It was absolutely the nicest fall day you can imagine. After climbing up from the dock we met Claude Daudet, our host and guide from Parks Canada. The first concern for everyone one was, “Where are your bathrooms?”  Once that task was taken care of, we had a tour on the boardwalk of the cemetery, powder house ruins and where the ships were pulled up for the winter. We also got to look at what was left of a replica York boat that was used for the TV series “Quest for the Bay". 

We got a tour of the grounds and the main building as well as being able to climb up into the rooftop cupola.   If you need to know anything about the North American fur trade, this place is ground zero! While we were there, a group of American goose hunters dropped in by helicopter for a visit.  They looked like they just walked out of the pages of a Cabelas catalogue! After a delicious BBQ on the shore we headed back.  Along the way, we had a look at the failed Port Nelson site and even saw a polar bear and some seals on our return trip.  We had dinner in Gillam and went to bed for an early wake up the next morning. We had to be at the station for 5 am as VIA was scheduled to depart at 5:30.  This meant a 4 am wake up call. Thankfully we got to catch some sleep when we got onto the train before breakfast. I took full advantage and was the last for breakfast!

We left on time and arrived in Thompson later in the morning. We had time to walk around and enjoy the beautiful fall day. I walked around and checked out the yard and some of the Hudson's Bay Railway equipment. 

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