Life on Old Glory captured in couples’ memoirs

The memoirs of a couple who spent summers on top of Old Glory Mountain were published this summer.

Life on Old Glory captured in couples’ memoirs

The memoirs of a couple who spent many summers on top of Old Glory Mountain were published this summer in a book called Up the Mountain and Back Again: A Packer’s Tale.

Wilfred and Ruth Gibbard were married on May 7, 1938, and arrived in Rossland days later on May 11. Shortly after their arrival, Wilf got a job as the forestry lookout man on Old Glory and thus began the couple’s many summers in the lookout.

In 1948 Wilf got the contract to pack supplies up to the weather station and Ruth took over as the lookout that summer with the couple’s two daughters in tow. Wilf had the packing contract until 1968 when the weather station burned down. While Wilf was packing, Ruth and the kids stayed at the O’Brien Camp on Hannah Creek.

Elaine Todd, their second daughter, remembers spending summers at the camp and occasionally riding up with her dad.

“We didn’t go up very often … because he had seven horses but six of them were loaded going up with everything,” she said.

Asked why her family decided to print her parents’ memoirs, Todd explained that it was her father’s intention to have them published all along.

“Initially Dad just wanted it done to share with his friends and family,” she said. “It was never meant to be out there for everyone and hence we’re not selling it.”

The family printed off 60 or so copies and sent them around to the Gibbard’s family and friends, but anyone interested in a copy can purchase one from lulu.com/shop/wilfred-gibbard-and-ruth-gibbard/up-the-mountain-and-back-again/paperback/product-23287632.html.

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