I fully expect that this will end up in front of the Supreme Court of Canada in due course. In any event, there is a movement afoot to abrogate the 19th century common-law rules and legislation relating to not only access to water bodies, but the right to traverse private land to get access to public areas (parks, lakes, etc.). There is overwhelming support in the party currently in power in BC and it now has a majority government. Few people in BC are beholden to Mr. Kroenke (the owner of the ranch), particularly most of the people who live in the area. In a sparsely populated place like the Fraser Plateau, that is probably not the best situation for him.
In any event, the changes to the law are long overdue. People on Vancouver Island, for example, are quite frustrated at logging companies who own a strip of land adjacent to the eastern coast gating roads that provide access to parts of eastern Strathcona Park.
One of the lakes we fished on the Douglass Lake Cattle Co. is shallow enough it has an planted fish population for a reason. It was subject to fish kill every so many years. It was frozen long enough the it ran out of oxygen. Rotting vegetation on the lake bottom? A number of those shallow, slightly alkaline lake in that region are subject to same. The Province actually ran aerators in a few of them ca 1970. The Kamloops strain of Rainbow does notoriously well in them otherwise.
I am out of date as to whether this still happens. The ice lasting weeks less each winter now may be enough that this might no longer occur.
Hard to imagine an attorney, and a 2021 British Columbian court effectively denying that the Nicola or other local bands had not accessed the lakes.
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