Workaway in Lac la Hache, Canada.
A quick sidenote: a workaway is a homestay where you get lodging and food in exchange for some household or farm tasks.
There are only a handful of places that really impacted my life and Lac la Hache is one of them.
In 2015, we lived in Vancouver for a few months. We did however also wanted to travel through British Columbia. The cheapest way being a workaway. After searching the Workaway website for some time we stumbled upon a 160 acre Ranch in Lac la Hache, British Columbia. It stated they had horses, dogs and chickens that needed taking care of and doing some gardening work.
They asked for at least a 4-week stay which we thought was more than perfect to get to know the people and surroundings. A few days and emails later we stepped off the Greyhound bus in Lac la Hache at 4:30 in the morning and were picked up by Doug in his pickup truck and drove off to the ranch.
It turned out Pat and Doug were the most generous, open and fun people we'd met on our entire trip in Canada. We stayed in a cabin on their property and had an ATV as means of transport (so much FUN!) We worked from 8 until 3 doing chores like watering the plants, feeding the little chicks and cutting wood. After that, our workday was over and we could ride the horses, go canoeing, ride the ATV or just lounge in the grass. In the weekend, we would sometimes visit the town of 100 Mile House for groceries or go to a rodeo.
My favorite part of our days was going horseback riding. Besides my passion for travel and photography, I've always had a huge love for horses. Being able to take care of them and ride them for almost every day was like a dream come true. Both Florian and I got a horse to take care of for those 6 weeks. (Ah yes we added another 2 weeks to our stay because we didn't want to leave!)
Mine was called Cinder because of her beautiful black color. She was very sweet but didn't like to be caught so you had to kind of lure her with snacks and hide the halter behind your back so she wouldn't see it. If she was on to you, she kept running away and it was really difficult to get her. Very frustrating!
Because we arrived right in the middle of Spring, Pat let us plant the vegetable garden. We planted radishes, peas, potatoes and other vegetables, something we had never done before. I took it upon myself to water the garden every morning and get the weeds out of the beds.
This workaway was one of the most memorable experiences of my life and I'm glad we got the chance to experience ranch life. Perhaps someday, when I'm older, I can make my dream (besides being an outdoor photographer) come true and start my own ranch in Canada..