A retired Langley school principal who organized a historical tour of the Fraser Valley for Porsche owners is planning to do it again.
On May 1, Cloverdale resident Gary Walker led 39 other Porsches on a route retracing the historic Old Yale Trail gold rush route of the 1880’s through New Westminster, Surrey, Langley, Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Rosedale, Cheam First Nation, Popkum, Flood and Hope before finishing at the Yale Historical Society, and a quiz.
“I just thought it would be cool to do something where you learn something,” Walker told the Langley Advance Times.
The educational ride for the Porsche Club Of America – Canada West region was sold out, with a waiting list.
“A lot of people were saying how much they enjoy it,” he related.
Walker is thinking about doing another one later in the year, possibly heading to Barkerville.
To mark the occasion, Walker swapped the wheel rims on his Porsche for ones with gold trim, a reference to the gold rush days of the original roads.
Walker’s route didn’t follow the original trail precisely.
Sometime it sent the cars along nearby paved roads because the original trail would be tough to traverse and Porsches ride close to the ground,.
“When you’re in a Porsche sitting this low, you want to avoid tracks and ruts,” Walker remarked.
He also learned not to trust electronic maps to follow a historical route.
“Google always wants to take you back to the fastest route, so I just scrubbed the maps,” Walker said.
Walker, a history and geography major, worked at Noel Booth, Coghlan, Glenwood, Murrayville and Lochiel schools in Langley before leaving to launch No. 1 collision, which specialises in high-end cars.
An additional participant was Graham MacDonell, a history buff from Abbotsford, who drives a Toyota, and took photos of the day, as well as assembling a selection of historical maps showing the original route.
MacDonell gave Walker a thumbs-up for organizing the ride.
“We both have an interest in teaching about the history of the region,” MacDonell remarked.
“Any time we can promote learning about the Fraser Valley, I’m there.”
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