Lytton Strong

Well, once again the tiny community of Lytton is taking a full frontal assault from nature.

Remember in the summer when the Lytton Creek Wildfire destroyed virtually all of the Village of Lytton? And then continued to burn thousands of acres of land around the village?

Now it is the opposite of the Heat Dome and fire that is causing grief and trouble for the community. It is the “atmospheric river” that is causing torment to the Lytton area.

Something that many people from Metro Vancouver or the provincial capital don’t seem to realize is that although the Village of Lytton – the centre where many of the services were located – services such as grocery stores, craft store, post office, cafes, banking, police, medical services including ambulance and a doctors clinic, and other community organizations have all been destroyed – there are many hundreds of people who live outside of the village centre who previously relied on those services. And they no longer have access to any of them. Unless they travel to neighbouring communities.

So that’s what the Lytton area residents did – Lyttonites began to rely on neighbouring communities like Boston Bar to the south. Lillooet to the north-west. Ashcroft and Spences Bridge to the north.

Because Canada Post can’t figure out – more than 4 months after the fire destroyed the village – how to get a post office working in town again Lytton residents redirected their mail to nearby communities.

Lytton residents are forced to travel to get groceries. Some go south to Hope or Chilliwack. Others go to Ashcroft or Merritt. Some to Kamloops.

Except that as I started out saying, Lytton has now been hammered by the torrential rainfall from the most recent “atmospheric river. All roads leaving Lytton are currently closed due to significant damage done by the flowing water.

So there is no driving up to get groceries. There is no going to pick up your mail at the post office. There is no ambulance in the area now. If there is a medical emergency a helicopter would be required to medivac the person.

Want to head north towards Spences Bridge or Ashcroft? Nope. Can’t do. The Trans Canada highway is closed – actually it is missing just north of Lytton near the community of Nicomen.

Want to go south to go to Boston Bar? Nope. Where the Trans Canada highway goes over Jackass Mtn it has been destroyed. Washed away.

Yesterday the highway to Lillooet reopened after two significant debris flows were removed from the surface of Hwy 12.

That’s a good thing. However, the highway from Lillooet through to Pemberton and then on to Whistler and Metro Vancouver is still closed due to massive debris flows that cover that road.

Lytton. The town that “was” according to Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The reality is that the community of Lytton still is and will continue to be strong. Even after fire and floods. Lytton Strong.