PEACE RIVER HOMESTEADS—How much land is there subject to homestead in the Peace River Country? What of the climate and other conditions?
According to the Government estimate, there are sixty million acres in the, Peace River district; about two million acres are surveyed and are now open to entry. The, land varies in the different localities; parts are timbered with spruce, tamarack, poplar, etc.; parts are brushy, and there are also large tracts of open prairie. Climate conditions are practically the same as other parts of Western Canada, the distance north being counteracted by the low altitude, together with the Chinook winds in winter; while the long sun-shiny days in summer furnish ideal conditions for prospectors. The rainfall is ample and practically all fall during the months when it is best utilized by crops. The soil is a rich black loam with a clay subsoil, Water and fuel are plentiful and easily obtained. All classes of grains and vegetables have been successfully grown for a number of years at Hudson Bay Posts, and by a few settlers.
The land suitable for agriculture is distributed along the Peace River and also for many miles away from it. One of the choice sections is the Grand Prairie; there is an enormous amount of land there yet vacant, but there are about 3000 people already settled there. But it is a trying trip to get into this country; a great many people are going in at present but mud and muskegs make it a hard trip. But once over the hard trail, a beautiful country greets the eye, and one who gets a homestead in the Grand Prairie will be amply rewarded in the future. This section raises the finest wheat and barley I ever saw. One man who raised several hundred bushels of potatoes this year states that they will average 21,4 lbs. apiece. The winters are not very long as spring comes early. Wild grass and vetches are abundant, and it should make an excellent stock country. I, myself, being an old trapper and prospector, drifted over the line with the idea of taking a homestead and trapping and dealing in fur, but being a little old to stand the hardships thought I would go to work at carpentering here until towards spring when the Grand being frozen I will hike into the Grand Prairie. I can’t say much from personal experience but I have talked with some reliable parties who know, and there seems to be considerable fur in certain districts contiguous to the Peace River. A good deal of mink and muskrat and considerable moose and bear in the timbered places.
Harding, A.R.. 3001 Questions and Answers. Columbus, Oh: A.R. Harding, 1913.
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