Paddlewheel Steamboats

The Cariboo Wagon Road

Cable Cars and the Ferry

The Railway

The Cariboo Wagon Road
Pictures of Mule Teams at Yale
Hudson's Bay Company Mule Team
(B.C.Archives, E-09944)

As the search for coarser gold pushed miners further up the Fraser and into the Cariboo, it was obvious that an improvement of the existing wagon trail was necessary. Road tolls were charged for travel on the new Cariboo Wagon Road to offset the expenses for construction. Traffic on the new rough Cariboo Wagon Road was diverse and included mule trains, stage coaches, lumbering freighters and even camels. Freight to the Cariboo and other points was packed by mules and loaded into freight wagons with a return trip taking up to 3 months (Coutant, Frank R., Yankee Steamboats on the Fraser River British Columbia. P.22).

The Alexandra Bridge

More images of the Alexandra Bridge
The Alexandra Bridge
(BC Archives: PDP-00168)

The first crossing of the Fraser river by the Cariboo Wagon Road was made at Spuzzum by the Alexandra Suspension Bridge.

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The British Columbia Express Company

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Barnard's Express leaving Yale for William's Creek
Francis James Barnard was the first person to operate horse stages carrying mail, people, gold and supplies on the new rough Wagon Road. The transportation line that he founded, the British Columbia Express Company, was successful for half a Century on the Cariboo Wagon Road. His name became synonymous with the growth of B.C.
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Cataline's Pack Train

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Jean 'Cataline' Caux
(BC Archives: B-01506)
Jean (Cataline) Caux came to B.C. around 1858 and set up a mule train between Yale and Barkerville (approximately 400 miles). There were about 30 mules to a train, each mule carrying about 240 pounds. A trip from Yale to Quesnel, travelling about 10 miles a day, took one month. His last trip was in 1913 ending his career of 52 years. He died in 1922 (Barkerville Library).

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Last updated 31 August 1998.
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