From Schoolteacher to Cariboo Rancher
As a schoolteacher in Redding, California, in the late 1940s, Doris Lee (née Pope) had a satisfying career, creature comforts, and a fashionable wardrobe. Then she fell in love with John Lee, a kind-hearted rancher who grew up on horseback and hunted for food.
Doris and John were married in 1949, and two years later migrated from the world they knew in California to an isolated ranch near Big Lake in British Columbia's Cariboo. Here, as a young bride, Doris battled loneliness, feelings of inadequacy, and the gruelling daily hardships of rudimentary backwoods living. But with sheer tenacity and determination Doris transformed herself into a highly skilled hunter, guide, trapper and shepherdess.
In this compelling memoir, Doris Lee leads us through stunning mountain passes on horseback, comes eye to eye with grizzlies and cougars, and provides deep insight into rearing and protecting two young boys in the remote wilderness. She becomes captivated by the magic of evenings spent around the comfort of a campfire and finds spiritual connection in the mysterious beauty of the aurora borealis. The brutal winters of the Cariboo and the never-ending demands of raising livestock shape her soul and challenge her to become stronger than she ever thought she could.