Ken Mather’s fifth book, Trail North (Heritage House) is available now. (Photo submitted)

North Okanagan author launches new book on Okanagan Trail

Ken Mather’s Trail North available now

Local author and Vernon Morning Star columnist Ken Mather announced the publication of his fifth book, Trail North — The Okanagan Trail of 1858-68 and Its Origins in British Columbia and Washington.

The new book tells the story of the trail through the Okanagan Valley and its use by indigenous peoples and three different fur trading companies before focusing on its use during the B.C. gold rush years of 1858 to 1868.

As usual, Mather’s extensive research and abilities as a storyteller, make the book a compelling read for those interested in B.C.’s colourful history.

“I first decided to write this book when travelling through the Grand Coulee in Washington, where a large sign tells the traveller about the Cariboo Trail, as it is referred to south of the border. It seemed to me that readers in Washington, as well as B.C., would be interested in the little-known story of the trail,” Mather explained.

It took three years and a lot of revision for the book to be published.

Mather originally wrote the book for Washington State University Press, where it went through two peer reviews before being turned down by the editorial board. Undeterred, Mather approached Heritage House, who had published three of his previous books, Buckaroos and Mud Pups, Bronc Busters and Hay Sloops and Frontier Cowboys and the Great Divide, and it was enthusiastically accepted.

Trail North is well footnoted and has an extensive bibliography and Mather believes that it is a thorough study of the story of this important but little-known trail in the Pacific Northwest.

Cowboy entertainer Rob Dinwoodie who, along with Mather, presents the Cowboy Dinner Show every Friday in July and August, will be there to provide entertainment.


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