One of the world’s biggest silver mining booms occurred in the Selkirk Mountains of British Columbia in the late nineteenth century. In September 1891, prospectors Eli Carpenter and J.L. “Jack” Seaton discovered a silver-lead ore deposit near the source of Slocan Creek, approximately 25 miles (40 kilometres) from the present-day community of Kaslo. The following year, mining boom towns sprung up in the Kokanee Mountain Range, as hopeful prospectors flooded into the area.
Communities such as Kaslo and New Denver managed to survive the end of the mining boom, but others were simply deserted. (In fact, Retallack itself is named after a long- abandoned mining town that used to stand on the site where our lodge is now situated). For this reason, the land between Kaslo and New Denver has been named The Valley of the Ghosts. You can still find traces of these former bustling communities, such as old housing foundations and abandoned mineshafts, as you travel between the two towns.