This week my job took me to Tumbler Ridge. It was a beautiful spring day in the Peace Country and I was excited to see a new part of the region I had not encountered yet. The Peace Region is known for its’ diversified list of energies (wind, hydro, solar, geothermal, and natural gas across Canada and the World. Today, I was to see wind farms for the first time in my life…up close!
It is hard to miss all of the wind farms along the Heritage Highway (Highway 59) driving to Tumbler Ridge. The first sight of a one of the wind farms is an eery one, you are driving up a hill, you turn the corner and BAM! There they are. Right in front of you, and so close at points you can turn off the highway and walk right up to one…I wouldn’t recommend this. Driving along the highway with the wind farms on both sides of the road is impressive. The sheer size at 135 metres (from base to hub) and with a rotorplus-blade diameter of up to 126 metres makes you feel really small…even in a large truck. To put that into context the Stature of Liberty is only 93 metres tall! You really feel small near them and it also makes you wonder how they were constructed?! I can’t imagine what sort of machinery props the propellers on…let alone helps to assemble the towers.
The Peace Region is a great place for wind farms, due to the steady wind and vast lands. I learned there are a couple of areas in the region which are the ideal location for wind farms, but at this time they are a little too far off the grid to make it feasible to construction. Last year (2015) the region received several new wind farm enquiries and proposals. It is exciting to see new technologies advancing.
So, get out, take a drive down to Tumbler Ridge and see these amazing structures and while you are there, stay the weekend. Tumbler Ridge has great hiking trails, lots of beautiful waterfalls, and camping spots, plus they are home to one of UNESCO’s sites the Tumbler Ridge Global Geopark (one of only 2 geoparks in North America!) and the Tumbler Ridge Dinosaur Museum.