January 14, 1938

c/o C. M. & S. Co. Ltd.

Yellowknife, N. W. T.

January 14th /38

Dear Mother:

Last weekend we had surprisingly warm weather—around twenty above—and it was just right for skiing.  I skiied overtown twice and found the lake much better than inland where I had been before as the snow is not nearly so deep and seems to be packed.  The first occasion was on Saturday night when Eric and I went over for supper.  Unfortunately we found the restaurant closed as the warm weather had caused the roof to leak and the place was completely flooded out.  However we managed to get a good meal at the hotel and then played pool the rest of the evening.  This entertainment was partly spoiled by the manager of the place as he insisted on playing and as he was quite good we spent more than the time [sic] watching him play.  However it cost us nothing as he has not received his license yet.

On the Sunday afternoon I skied up to the mill to see what progress has been made.  Late I met Tudor, also on skiis, and we hiked over to town for tea and toast—I completely forgetting the unwelcome condition of the restaurant.  So once again we resorted to the hotel.

We played poker for a while last night which proved fairly successful for me.  I was up about $2.25 at the end.  I have played about four times up here and am practically where I started as far as finances go.  Probably down some 50¢ due to an unfortunate five minutes of Blackjack when I had the deal and lost almost $3.00.  This happened the first time I played so I have never dealt a round of this since.

The laying off process still continues as the mills [sic] nears completion.  They are now laying the cement floor in the mill and I think all the various tanks are at last finished.  This cement laying is quite a job in the cold weather as there is no steam heat in the mill yet.  There are probably about fifteen wood burning heaters scattered thru the mill to keep the cement warm enough to dry.  The air lines for the hoist and drill also seem to freeze up quite often.  I am not sure how this happens but I suppose a spot of moisture must freeze in one of the various valves.  So far none of the insulated water mains have frozen.

Page happened to leave here last week without passengers or freight (the first time his plane has been empty for a long time methinks) and he put on a good show of stunting and crazy-flying for our benefit.  We were all out with our cameras trying to snap him as he dived on the staff house.  It was really surprising how close he did come too.  It is a wonder he didn’t get entangled in one of the six aerials.  Next he dived on the bull-cook who was standing on the ice having previously boasted to Page that he wouldn’t move.  He has looked sheepish ever since.

Bill Jewitt of Goldfields flew his plane from Edmonton to Trail last week in the amazingly short time of only 3½ hours.  He had a 50. m.p.h. tail wind most of the way.

As far as I know the postage rates have not gone up—certainly the ordinary letter rate is the same as always.

It was a surprise to me that the toaster took three slices at once.  It did not look like that in the “Post”.

Uncle Tom seems to have his trip all figured out to the last detail.  I don’t suppose I am likely to see him as his visit would be the busy season for us.

Doug showed me some crushed ore from our Gordon Lake claims which he was assaying and it was full of fine gold.  I wonder if we will start development work there next year.

The mail plane only got as far as Smith today for reasons unknown as flying conditions were good here.  That is as far as Page got also but he had an excuse.  He broke his tail-ski when he landed.

With love from


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