Simon Fraser- Journal Entry 1

June 1, 1808

Today we set out at 4 am, the mornings have been long and cold. River stretches have become evermore dangerous, but the crew continues to follow with courage.

After encountering strong rapids, we drifted with a long stretch with a strong current behind us. As we drift I have time to think about my past, along with what is to come. I reminisce of my family and times of training. Just 18 short years ago I began my apprenticeship with the North West Company. Now I am exploring an unknown river with my own crew of men. Many of the men in my crew are freed slaves looking for work in the fur trade after the abolishment of slavery one year ago.

Today a crew member I sent back to Fort George with rumours of conflict between us and the Americans.  There are words of war being exchanged throughout the colonies. For now though it is too soon to tell what is to come, and myself and the crew must focus on the task at hand. Tomorrow we will be passing a very dangerous set of rapids. I have employed a few guides from a nearby native tribe.

I will write again soon.

Simon Fraser







The Six Hats- In-depth Post 6

So Garry is getting ready for the hunting and fishing trade show this weekend, but he was able to find some time to meet before I leave for Hawaii on Sunday. We met Wednesday for more of a “discussion” meeting, which was good because I got all kinds of good stuff to transcribe.

We talked about a whole bunch of stuff; what have I done so far, some of the things I’ve learned, and where I want to go next. Although we didn’t tie anything, I still thought it was a really good meeting, a kind of review really.

Here’s a snippet of one of the conversations between Garry and I:

Basically what’s happening here is I’m walking around the shop looking at a bunch of stuff (tools, flies, magazines) and just going over what I’ve learned and what’s next.

Me: So I’ve learned to work rabbit and marabou so far. I know that you have to start with a foundation of thread, and the best way to tie materials in is with the 1,2,3,4 forward and back method. I’ve practiced whip finishing. And dubbing is when you spin stuff around the thread to finish right.

Garry: Yeah, that’s exactly right, you take the fur or whatever you have and spin it one way around the thread. There’s also a dubbing twister tool that you can use to make your life easier.                                                                                           Me: (looking at the fly shelf) These are flesh flies right? Made with rabbit and their supposed to look like a big ball of dead meat floating down the river.

Garry: Pretty much, like dead chum, and dolly’s (a type of fish) love those. Do you remember what kind of rabbit is used for these?

Me: There’s zonker and cross-cut rabbit.

Garry: Yup

Me: And in this case you’d be wrapping it around. So it would be, cross-cut.

Garry: Yes! And why cross and not zonkers?

Me: well… zonker material isn’t made for wrapping because of the way it’s cut, so you use cross-cut and palmer it as you go.

Garry: Yes! Exactly, ’cause otherwise you’d end up with this big fur ball mo-hawk, and that’s the last thing you want.

This section is shows an example of the white hat. We talk about what I know and need to practice. The real hard facts.

Me: I have an idea of what I want to do next too.

Garry: Yeah what’s that.

Me: Well I’m into trout so I figured we could do some nymphs maybe.

Garry: Yeah of course, that’s a good place to move on to. Something like a doc spratley would be an easy transition into nymphs… yeah you need to tie one of those; they call it BC’s number one wet fly.

Me: Awesome, so we can get into that next time we meet. And for like techniques and stuff it’s not really that much different or…?

Garry: Yeah a lot of the stuff is the same, different materials of course, stuff like pheasant hair and deer. But overall their close, just a bit smaller though.

Me: Nice nice, sound good I think I’m ready to move on, ’cause I feel confident with jigs and stuff so…

Garry: Yeah for sure, I think you’re ready too.

This section is more of the black and red hats as we discuss if I’m ready to move on, as well as my emotions (what I want). I didn’t really use the green and yellow hat’s I think though, so that’s something I can work on.

Anyways next time I post it should be about something like the flies below.

Wet flies

two different Doc Spratelys & a Tom Thumb


Finally Free: A Good Source

I really had a hard time picking a specific source to talk about, but I eventually came up with an article about the Abolition of Enslavement in Canada provided by Vanessa G.

Although brief, the article is very informative, and I was actually able to learn a lot from what I read. It explained the many different fronts that this battle for freedom was fought. The article also talked about the realization of many slave owners and other people that African people are no different from the rest of the community.

“Enslaved Africans fought against being taken and held captive in Africa, fought against enslavement while in slave ships and during their confinement before sale and once they were sold. It was through these acts of resistance that some slave owners had to reconsider the slave system, the independence of Africans and why they would not accept this status. Their resistance brought into question the ways in which people thought about Africans—they were bright and capable and not content with slavery.”


It was cool to read about the many “important” people that were involved in the fight against and abolition of slavery. I found it intriguing that many of the supporters were former slave owners, who had come to realization of how cruel slavery was. This was definitely a pivotal time in the fight for abolition as stated in the text;

“Former slave owners and those having strong religious convictions also began to fight against the enslavement of Africans. Known as abolitionists, they attempted to use their positions in society to affect laws that had allowed slavery to develop. The movement toward abolition was evident in Britain, and in Canada, a British colony with its own enslaved population, the movement grew quickly.”


For sure this article relates to the PLO sheet as it falls under some of the sections such as B1 or B4. The article speaks about the importance of the movement to end slavery had during the makings of Canada and how it has shaped us into the country we are today.