From California to North 52 Degrees

Cariboo Experiences

By Todd Lee & Eldon Lee

Categories: BC History
Imprint: Caitlin Press
Paperback : 9780920576540, January 1994


In the manner of a good fireside chat with a favourite aunt or uncle, Life in the Cariboo chronicles the Lees' life in one of BC's most rugged areas. We hear about swamp ranches, education by mail, life before universal TV. Best of all, there are tales of some of the Cariboo's legendary - almost mythical - characters, such as Annie Basil and the killer the police couldn't catch.

Todd and Eldon Lee are as intriguing as the Cariboo characters they write about. They were born in northern California in the 1920s, and in the early days of the Depression, the Lees' mother and grandparents loaded up two vehicles with their belongings and their boys and headed north. Todd and Eldon grew up on an isolated Cariboo ranch, dealing with rustic facilities and playing practical jokes that were sometimes funny and sometimes not. Eldon joined the Royal Canadian Air Force and served in bomber command during World War Two, while Todd worked the ranch, cared for their aging grandfather, and wished he were overseas with his brother. Eldon then trained as a doctor and Todd as a minister, although he later became a parole officer. Today both men are married and living in Prince George. Eldon had six children and Todd had nine - a family often called a miniature United Nations because it includes children of all hues. Eldon has recently retired after delivering some 5200 babies, and plans to continue his studies in ancient Greek. In 1990, Todd learned thathe had cancer, and decided to do everything he had been putting off. He got his pilot's licence, started writing books (this is his fifth in three years), canoed the Yukon River, hiked and biked and drove around the Cariboo and the BC coast, and is still making plans. Both brothers have published stories in a variety of periodicals, and Todd is the author of He Saw With Other Eyes, A Horse of His Own, Friends from the Sea and The Snoring Log Mystery.