The highlight of the holiday Monday is The Arrival of the Fur Brigades
, when re-enactors paddle down the Fraser River and arrive at Marina Park to the boom of ancient muskets.
Most of the outgoing fur brigades
launched from the docks at Lachine, right across the river from Kahnawake, so Mohawk men could easily seek employment for a season or longer if inclined.
From the beginning of the Hudson's Bay Company's history on the Columbia River, the HBC fur brigades
travelled up and down the river in wood bateaux, not canoes.
in 1962, for instance, is to see it in much the same way David Thompson and his men did when they spent the winter of 1810 building watercraft to take them down the Columbia; it's to imagine the joy and relief of the men from Fort Vancouver and Jasper House, and perhaps to hear their voices raised in song when their fur brigades
It was one of the main supports of the first line of transportation, the fur brigades
, since replaced by the transcontinental line of the Canadian national railways, which follows the same route up the valley.