PINK MOUNTAIN, B.C. – The historical Buckinghorse River Lodge, owned by the Shannon family since 1999, is closing down and going up for auction.
After depleting their resources while trying to keep the lodge open, the Shannon family says they couldn’t do it anymore, especially with the current cost of fuel.
After running the business for 23 years, the family has been forced to sell.
“Everything comes to an end at some point,” said Howard Shannon. “Unfortunately, this didn’t end the way we wanted it to. We were hoping we could sell it to somebody who would keep it going. We don’t know whether that’s going to happen now or not.”
The lodge officially closes on September 17th, 2022, with the online and live auction happening on September 24th at the lodge.
“For six years, we’ve been struggling, trying to keep this place going, and we just got to the point now where we just are not gonna survive the winter,” said Shannon.
He says that fuel prices are a significant reason they have to sell.
“For us to go back to town and back is 120 bucks, just for gas,” Shannon said.
“Our fuel costs for our generator and stuff like that is just astronomical now, and that’s probably the biggest reason why we wouldn’t make the winter is because of the fuel costs.”
Originally, Buckinghorse was a river crossing along the trail from Fort St. John to Fort Nelson in the 1800s to the 1900s.
The origin behind the name is rumoured to come after horses and mules got spooked on a freighter while crossing the river, bucking all their packs off and scattering the goods being hauled.
According to Shannon, Wes Brown and his family settled the area in about 1935 with a few buildings near the river. Brown was first a surveyor working on radar sites in the Northwest Territories before he opened and ran a hunting operation.
“Somebody might dispute that, but that’s the information I have,” Shannon said.
The area was also reportedly used as a gas station, rest stop, and a United States Army Camp while the Alaska Highway was being built in 1942.
“[Brown] sold it in 1965, and I think there were three owners between him and us, but it was the hunting lodge until 1999,” he said.
The south end of the restaurant in the lodge is one of the original army barrack buildings, according to the Shannons.
The parking area was originally an airstrip built to fly hunters and outfitters to Neves Creek and Keely Creek on the Besa River.
Now, it is run as a family-owned truck stop that boasts a family-run restaurant, seven motel units, log cabins, a 15-site campground and an AFD-provided gas station.
The Shannon family wants to thank the public for the business and friendships they’ve made with people from around the world over the years.
“We’ve had people from all walks of life, all over the world, that stopped here because their friend told them that we got the best food on the highway,” he explained.
“We’re going to miss all those people … We’re going to miss the place big time. It’s a huge part of our life,” Shannon said.
For more information on the sale, visit Rhythm Auctions’ website.