Article contributed by Jean Miller So many people ask if it is true that winters used to be much colder up here. The answer is yes. We could generally figure on one to two weeks of nights between minus 30 degrees to minus 50. This usually occurred between the middle of November and the third week of January. (Please note that we also didn¹t have pine beetle infestations during those years.) We Fraser Valley folk depended on weather reports kept by Ronald and Edna Tucker, who for many years faithfully read thermometers day and night. It was through their efforts that Fraser came to be known as the “Icebox of the Nation”. These were the years when it was guaranteed that the power would go out, usually on the coldest nights when you had a crowd in the house, for the REA had not existed very long and they suffered from many glitches and equipment failures. Occasionally somebody would set his house afire, trying to thaw pipes entering from the outside. The incident I am going to relate was in mid-November 1951, and I had just delivered Dwight to the airport, to leave for his required two weeks Naval Reserve active duty in San Diego. I took advantage of the break to stay with my family in Denver for the night. I was an innocent city girl, and at that time I didn’t realize the connection between being overcast for a week (which we had been) and what happens when the sky clears (which it did). I got home to Hideaway Park in the late afternoon, just after dark. It was so cold! I checked the house and put more coal in the stoker. All was in order. Next I went over to the Inn (Millers Idlewild). As I opened the front door, I heard water running, as in a waterfall. The noise came from the kitchen. When I went to check, I saw a spray of water shooting from the sink all the way across the room, drenching the stove. The floor was an ice skating rink. I couldn’t believe my eyes. As far as I could tell, it was as cold inside as out. I tried to shut off the water at the sink, but the pipe was split. I ran to the laundry room and searched for valves, but everything I tried did nothing at all. At last I drove back to the highway to Ray Hildebrand’s house. He and his wife Mabel had a small grocery store and Hideaway Park’s first post office. Ray, one of the few people I knew in town, kindly came to my rescue. He found the main valve hiding behind other pipes, and the geyser in the kitchen fell silent. Then I built a fire in the furnace. Now I was a poor ignorant city girl. For years my family had had natural gas; when it got cold, we turned up the thermostat. What did I know about stokers, sheared pins, and augers, tuyeres and clinkers? A lot of nothing. That was a rough two weeks. The night temperature was never warmer than 35 below. I mopped up the mess in the kitchen, once the place warmed up a bit and the water thawed, but I just left the split pipe situation for Dwight to deal with. I struggled the whole time to keep the Inn above freezing. I was afraid that if I gave up, every pipe in the place would burst and I was embarrassed to call on Ray Hildebrand again. Dwight’s weeks were finally over and I picked him up once more. I was so glad to see him! Indeed, I hoped he wouldn’t leave again for a very long time. He was a dear boy and I did miss him. Besides, he knew all about pipes and pumps and furnaces.