This article was translated by John R. Bopp

In February 2013, we discovered, we found, on an old map of the western part of Canada, a geographica reference to a region called “Basque”.  As we said at the time, our curiosity was piqued:

Why would there be a place with this name 300km (200mi) from Vancouver)?  Our curiosity was further increased when we learned that the full name was Basque Indian Reserve 18.

So, we dug around, and wrote this article (that has been one of those that we really enjoyed writing) about what we’d found about that story regarding this “Indian reservation” in western Canada and its relationship with the Land of the Basques.

Today, we’ve found that at that place again, on that same point of the Thompson River, is a property that’s for sale, called Basque Vineyard, BC.  It’s 12.23 acres big (50,000m2) and is shown as the perfect place to create a vineyard for grapes that have come from the Basque area between France and Spain.  This property is situated on exactly the same point as “Basque Indian Reserve 18”, but on the other side, opposite the river.

Discovering this information only served to pique our curiosity more.  After all, someone in the Basque Country can only be amazed to read:

The Basque Vineyard BC is a stunning 12.23-acre property located on the beautiful sloping hillsides of the Basque region part of the South Cariboo overlooking the majestic Thompson River.

So, with these new clues, we started doing some research, and we found the history and photos of The Basque Ranch, as discussed in the book “Golden Nuggets: Roadhouse Portraits Along the Cariboo’s Gold Rush Trail”, written by Branwen Christine Patenaude.

The Basque Ranch in British Columbia (photo from “Golden Nuggets: Roadhouse Portraits along the Cariboo’s Gold Rush Trail” by Branwen Christine Patenaude)
The Basque Ranch in British Columbia (photo from “Golden Nuggets: Roadhouse Portraits along the Cariboo’s Gold Rush Trail” by Branwen Christine Patenaude)

In this book, we’re told how a group of Basques (most likely from north of the Pyrenees) came up from Oregon in 1861 and founded the ranch, which since then has been known by the nationality of its first owners and which ended up giving its name to the whole area.

Follow this link to visit the website created for selling the Basque Vineyard BC.  We imagine that once it’s sold, the website will disappear, so we’ve made a .pdf of it so that this story will be preserved; it will be posted shortly.

Basque Vineyard BC – 2015 –  Canadá

Basque Vineyard BC, Inc.

Basque vineyard BC is a stunning 12.23 acre property located on the beautiful sloping hillsides of the Basque region part of the South Caribou overlooking the majestic Thompson river. With its southern exposure, sunny arid climate and down gently slopping hills makes it a more fertile environment for Grape cultivation than the wine country in Spain and France. The potential of this area is limitless.

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Vistas sobre el Rio Thompson de el Basque vineyard en plena British Columbia

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